All the new products investigated by ACNielsen showed strong levels of initial trial, and distribution was also high. Even more impressive, however, was the proportion of consumers trying the newcomers who bought a second time.
Diet Coke with Lemon, launched in June 2002, topped the roll of distribution, reaching 97% of potential outlets by the end of the year, according to ACNielsen. Its Coca-Cola stablemate Fanta Fruit Twist was only just behind with 96%.
Winnie the Poo Roo Juice rolled out to just over three-quarters of soft drinks outlets, while Danone Activ Fruit's Blackcurrant and Tropical Orange flavours hit a peak of 64%. Pepsi Twist, launched in July as a rival to the Diet Coke lemon variant, was distributed to only 48% of possible outlets, but UK distributor Britvic stressed that its launch was a "multiples-only" trial.
Diet Coke with Lemon also had the strongest initial appeal. Some 12% of ACNielsen's consumer panel tried it, with Fanta Twist hitting 7.7%.
However, Fanta Fruit Twist scored slightly higher on the repeat rate ­ 43.6% of those who tried it bought again, compared to 41.3% for Diet Coke with Lemon. Pepsi Twist's score was 27.4%.
Initial trial rate was lower for Danone Activ Fruit at 1.3% and Roo Juice at just under 2%, but all the products did well on repeat purchase rate, with 20% the lowest score.