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Introduction to Bling H20
Bling H20 is a brand of mineral water bottled in Dandridge, Tennessee and the design was inspired by Kevin Boyd, a writer and producer. After spending a lot of time in the studio with celebrities, he observed that the water bottle type could be used to identify one’s class. This brand of mineral water is packaged in snowy bottles decorated with Swarovski crystals and to further add class, it is purified in a nine-step course that comprises Ozone, UV treatment and micro-filtration (Bling H20, N. d., para. 1). Its price ranges from $25 to $75, depending on volume.
The aim of the paper is to explore how the product would perform in an Australian Market and its likely buyers.
Australia’s population as at September 2010 was roughly 22.4 million, almost a quarter of these (4.5 million) live in Sidney, 4 million in Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide follow with 2 million, 1.6 million and 1.2 million respectively. With a total area of 7.687 square Kilometers, the population density of Australia is two persons per square Kilometer, this would be one of the lowest figures in the world, however, most of the continent is either desert or semi desert (40%) and little agricultural activity is practiced. As a result, Australia is one of the most urbanized countries with 90% of the population living in urban areas. The age structure is fairly balanced with more than two-thirds of the total population being between the ages of 15 and 64.
If Bling H20 was to be introduced in Australia, the highest sales would be recorded in Sydney, besides being the most populous city in the continent, it has the highest population density and the highest urban population. Besides, it has a median age of 35 and is the economic hub of Australia, for example, out of the 54 banks operating in the continent, 44 have their headquarters in Sydney.
Melbourne would follow closely due to its population but this is not the case, it is not as economically active as Sydney’s. Melbourne is Australia’s centre for arts, education and cultural and entertainment and is often referred to as the cultural capital of the continent. Melbourne’s woes are further worsened by the weather; the city experiences low rainfall and high temperatures and this has created a water shortage which forced the government to enforce water restriction among the residents. The city also has housing problems resulting from its low-density housing. These factors, coupled with the high housing rates and a high population growth rate, reduce the resident’s ability to be high-spenders and Bling H20 would not perform well in the city.
Bottled Water in Australia
Australians spend more than half a billion dollars on bottled annually and it is no surprise that the sale of bottled water rises by 10% in the same period. There have been environmental concerns regarding use of bottled water with experts suggesting that a lot of oil is used in producing bottled water, moreover, just 36% of the bottles are recycled (Do Something, 2009, para. 1). The continent’s use of bottled water leads to the production of more than 60,000 tonnes of Greenhouse discharge yearly- equivalent to what 13,000 cars would emit over the same duration. More than 1000 bottled water brands are sold in Australia, examples of companies producing mineral water are Coca Cola, Amatil and Schweppes, even companies manufacturing beer have joined in this business.
The extent to which bottled water affects the environment in Australia was seen recently when residents of Bundanoon voted to ban its sale, saying that the high amounts of energy used to package the water deplete the environment. The waste bottles also pollute the soil (BBC News, 2009, para. 1).
Ethical Concerns on H20
The first ethical concern that people have on Bling H20 is its ridiculous high price, an average water bottle costs about $3.00 but Bling H20 costs as much as $75.00, at this price, it is the most expensive mineral water in the world, Bling H20 has been made expensive for no apparent reason. Obviously, the owners are ripping the public of their money in the name of ‘the best tasting water’. The second concern is on the environment. If the treatment procedure is truly a nine-step process as said by the company, then this means that a lot of Greenhouse gases are emitted into the atmosphere, worsening the already bad environmental situation. The third ethical concern is the influence that this company might have on others. Other companies may learn from the success of Bling H20 and increase their prices in the hope of persuading people that ‘if it is expensive, then it is quality’. This kind of mentality may make other companies to hike their prices beyond the reach of an average citizen.
If I was the brand manager, my message would mainly dwell on the need to produce a unique brand for the affluent members of the society, which, of course, should come at a price. I would inform the board that this product is not meant for everybody, rather for the celebrities who are willing to pay any sum of money to maintain their status quo.
BBC News. (2009). Australian town bans bottled water.
Bling H20. (N. d.). Our Story.
Do Something. (2009). Did you know. Web.