Rauch Black never in the black

Promising new product becomes a flop

Wow! Almost two thirds of those who tried this new drink clearly said: I would buy it! There had never been such good market research results. These results, the innovative product and the major launch campaign also convinced retail partners: Rauch Black, the strong, masculine, carbonated iced tea in the eye-catching black bottle was to be the innovation of 2011 in 14 different countries. But it became the biggest flop in the history of Rauch.

One possible reason was the design: the black bottle caught the eye, but consumers remained unclear: is this an iced tea? Or an energy drink? Or some kind of new lemonade? But more serious was the other thing: most consumers didn't like Black! How could that be? The test results were sensational, weren't they?

An investigation provided the best explanation: in the test, the test subjects knew before the first sip that they were about to drink sparkling iced tea. But the actual consumers obviously did not know that. Although the word "sparkling" appeared on the bottle several times, this important reference to the unusual aspect was not noticeable enough. And when iced tea is not smooth on the tongue as expected, but tickles it with a fizzing sensation, most people's reaction is one of irritation.

This realisation came too late to make any changes in advertising and design. Rauch took Black off the market a few months after its launch. But you learn from your mistakes and Rauch has learned a lot from this project. Some colleagues still mourn this unique drink to this day.

Rauch Black was meant to be the biggest innovation on the iced tea market and became Rauch's biggest flop: the sparkling iced tea in the striking black bottle was too unusual for consumers.