Jones Soda Company

Table of Content

The Jones Soda Company has effectively partnered with different companies, such as Barnes & Noble, Panera Bread, and Starbucks, in the last two years to gain wider market visibility. These alliances offer a valuable avenue for promoting their brand since Jones does not invest in expensive advertising campaigns. By making their diverse range of beverages available in stores and restaurants, Jones has significantly increased consumer sales beyond what they could achieve independently.

To ensure continued success, the current suggestion is to form a strategic alliance with Applebee’s. Although the New Age beverage industry is competitive, it is experiencing significant growth. Analysis of the EFE Matrix shows that Jones is in a favorable position to succeed in providing energy drinks, premium juice, and premium soda. This success can be attributed to their numerous strengths, as outlined in the IFE Matrix.

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Jones can enhance their culture and continue to stimulate consumer interest and demand for their products. After conducting a SWOT analysis of the IFE and EFE, two strategies were identified as beneficial for Jones. One option is to establish a strategic alliance with Applebee’s, while the other involves building strong relationships with distributors. A thorough evaluation using a QSPM Matrix determined that forming additional strategic alliances would be the most effective action to take. By pursuing this strategy, Jones will not only gain a greater competitive edge over other industry players but also expand their market share.

Applebee’s offers a family dining experience that is different from Panera Bread or Starbucks, making it appealing to a diverse range of consumers. Given Jones’s expertise in forming strategic alliances, they have the ability to collaborate effectively with Applebee’s. I. Background In 1987, Peter van Stolk founded Urban Juice and Soda Company Ltd., which was initially established as a distributor of distinctive alternative beverages. These beverages included Fresh Arizona Iced Tea, Pik’t Juice, and Thomas Kemper Soda.

Jones started out as a popular beverage distributor in 1994. Building on their experience, Jones decided to create and sell their own products. Their first creation was WAZU Natural Spring Water in 1995. The following year, they introduced the first six flavors of Jones Premium Soda. In 2000, Jones launched their first energy drink named WhoopAss, and in 2001, they released the initial lineup of Jones Juice. What sets Jones apart is their distinctive packaging, which has won numerous awards. All of their beverages are packaged in clear glass bottles with black and white labels that showcase ever-changing pictures submitted by devoted customers.

To distribute their products to the public, Jones started with an “alternative distribution strategy” by placing their Jones coolers in distinct locations like fashion outlets, piercing and tattoo parlors, skate parks, and surf shops. Their marketing approach depended on word of mouth and the endorsement of the Jones Pro Riders Team, a sponsored group of extreme athletes who promote the brand. Recently, Jones has formed successful partnerships with different stores and restaurants to further distribute their products.

Refer to appendix 1 for a detailed timeline of events in Jones history. II. Goal and Mission Jones mission statement, which is shown in appendix 2, is printed on the back label of every bottle they produce. And while it does not seem like something you normally hear from a company, they mean every word. Their approach is to be simple, fun, and honest. Everything in Jones reflects these ideas. One of their company mottos, “Run with the little guy… Create some change” illustrates this point. They want to be seen as the everyman who just happens to make good sodas.

Jones’ goal extends beyond selling quality beverages; they aim to create a memorable experience for consumers through witty quotes, unique pictures, and ever-changing flavors. Their mission statement explicitly mentions the desire to make money, and they plan to achieve this by standing out in the industry with their unconventional advertising methods. III. Industry Analysis

Despite the dominance of major players such as Coca Cola, PepsiCo, and Cadbury Schweppes, the beverage industry has faced a period of stagnation. These large companies, as well as several others, have inundated the market, making it challenging to secure shelf space. However, amidst this situation, the New Age beverage sector has thrived. While the overall industry has experienced little growth, private label soft drinks have seen a remarkable 37 percent increase in sales over the past two years, while energy drinks have witnessed a significant 31 percent boost.

Jones and other New Age beverage companies are not direct competitors of Coca Cola or PepsiCo. These newer products are considered to be a premium category of beverages and can command higher prices. IV. EFE Matrix in Jones’ appendix 3 illustrates that their external environment supports steady growth and also showcases their successful exploitation of this opportunity. Sales of flavored juices, energy drinks, and private label soft drinks have witnessed a consistent growth of at least 30 percent in each segment over the past two years with no indication of decline.

Casual dining restaurants have experienced growth in business, and Jones would benefit from this trend through the Applebee’s strategic alliance. Moreover, Jones successfully addresses the challenges in their industry. Instead of being affected by market saturation and limited shelf space, they have expanded their product offerings in unconventional places such as Barnes & Noble, Panera Bread, and Starbucks stores. These partnerships have significantly boosted Jones’ sales beyond their individual capabilities.

The IFE Matrix for Jones indicates that they have performed adequately. They have effectively utilized their strengths but have not made significant progress in addressing their weaknesses. As previously mentioned, Jones excels in capturing and retaining customer interest. Their direct-to-retail distribution approach, facilitated by strategic alliances, has generated substantial revenue. Additionally, involving customers in the design and production decisions contributes to consumer loyalty and expansion.

Jones’ primary internal issue is the distribution of their product, as they heavily depend on independent distributors. Consequently, they lack strong, long-term relationships with these distributors. Consequently, Jones incurs considerable variable costs and encounters challenges in marketing and expansion. Appendix 4 provides additional details on the IFE Matrix. Utilizing the SWOT Analysis in appendix 5, the external factors were compared to the internal factors, resulting in the development of five possible strategies to enhance Jones’ situation.

The most feasible strategies include expanding the product lines of Jones Juice and WhoopAss, forging long-term relationships with distributors, and acquiring a strategic alliance with Applebee’s. Currently, there is an increasing demand for energy drinks and private label juice. Introducing more products to meet this demand could be profitable but risky. Jones should consider looking into forging long-term relationships with distributors, although it may not be possible due to limited funds. Strategic alliances have been successful in the past and can generate additional revenue.

The addition of Applebee’s to Jones’ growing list of partnerships would open the doors for other casual dining restaurants to sell Jones products. This strategic alliance, along with the establishment of long-term relationships with distributors, was analyzed using the QSPM Matrix (see appendix 6). Three factors played a significant role in the decision to proceed with this alliance. The first factor was the increasing business in casual dining establishments, which would result in higher sales through Applebee’s restaurants.

Second, due to limited shelf space in supermarkets and convenience stores, Jones needs to find other places to sell their products. The easiest way is to continue selling at successful locations such as Barnes & Noble, Panera Bread, Starbucks restaurants, and eventually Applebee’s. VIII. Culture Jones’ key advantage lies in their strong corporate culture, which sets them apart from other companies and attracts a steadily growing base of loyal consumers.

By involving their customers in almost every step of the process, they can better forecast product demand beforehand. Jones emphasizes the values of change, fun, honesty, and simplicity, which permeate their entire business. Through initiatives such as the Jones Pro Riders and Jones Emerging Riders extreme athlete teams, and their appearances on shows like Monster Garage, they have established themselves as more than just a beverage company. Jones has cultivated a counter culture following due to their extensive customer engagement.

Their website contains user-generated content such as homemade commercials, essays, and message boards. Implementing the new strategy should be straightforward for Jones, as they have previous experience with entering into strategic alliances with food chains. In the next year, Jones plans to introduce six Jones Premium Sodas and four Jones Juices to Applebee’s restaurants nationwide. The rollout will begin with a few chains in each region, with expansion based on sales performance.

Flavors will be selected based on consumer opinions from each region as submitted to the Jones website. To maintain interest in the brand, new flavors will be periodically introduced to the menu. Similar to Panera Bread eateries, all bottles sold at Applebee’s will have customized labels provided by Applebee’s employees. Additionally, to incentivize the purchase of Jones products and solidify the brand as high-quality private label beverages, a selection of alcoholic drinks made with Jones products will be featured and illustrated on tabletop menu highlights.

These drinks will be similar to popular concoctions like “rum and coke” or “red bull and vodka”. It is possible that by introducing these new mixed drinks, Jones could increase sales to individuals who want to make these drinks at home. X. Control The success of the Applebee’s endeavor will be measured in a similar way as other partnerships. Jones employees will make surprise visits to different restaurant locations to check inventory levels and sales. If a specific flavor is not selling well, Jones may decide to replace it with a different flavor.

New beverages will be introduced periodically to maintain consumer interest. Moreover, Jones employees will ensure that the table top menu highlights are prominently presented on every table. As most of the production and distribution processes are outsourced, Jones has limited control over these areas. XI. Competitive Analysis Despite starting later than other companies in the industry, Jones is quickly gaining ground and has the potential to surpass the competition.

Jones has successfully utilized the distinctiveness of their product to stand out from their competitors, which include Arizona Iced Tea, Snapple, Sobe, and Henson’s Natural Beverages. However, Jones falls short in comparison to these companies when it comes to establishing lasting relationships with distributors. This deficiency results in flawed production predictions and inventory challenges, issues that their competitors manage to circumvent. Additionally, Jones faces a capital disparity, as their limited funds restrict their choices in contrast to Snapple or Sobe.

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Jones Soda Company. (2018, Feb 06). Retrieved from

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