Throughout the writing of my book, in all my interviews with Gatorade people, they always stressed one thing -- stay on point. Gatorade might be used for hangovers and to rehydrate sick youngsters, but the one rule was never stray from the message of hydration for athletic occasions.
That's why I'm baffled by the positioning of this Gatorade A.M. product. Gatorade A.M. was first reported on this blog on March 23, 2006. That's because Gatorade filed for its trademark and we were left speculating exactly what they would do. In November, a reader wrote he had tasted it, but it was only until yesterday when I first spotted it in the stores.
So let's tell you what it is. It's actually your same old Gatorade, but it comes in morning flavors -- like orange-strawberry and tropical mango and cranberry-raspberry is apparently coming. That makes sense to me. Good idea. I sometimes can't take some of these flavors while working out at 5 a.m.
What doesn't make any sense to me is that the copy on the back of the Gatorade A.M. It just doesn't do an adequate job of explaining exactly what this thing is. You judge for yourself.
This straight from the back of the bottle: "Gatorade A.M. helps you put back the fluids and energy you lose during a full night's sleep."
What? What type of energy am I losing while lying on my back for seven hours? I thought that's what sleeping was for!
This is the second time Gatorade is trying to rationalize the brand for breakfast. Let's take you back to 1994, when Gatorade introduced a drink called Sunbolt. It was high in carbs and high in caffeine and the 12-ounce drink had 210 calories. It lasted six months.
"It filled a niche for some people, but from an equity standpoint it was a dangerous direction to go in. It wasn't for the athlete, and it probably should have been managed under a separate name."
This isn't a separate product and I think it could work. But it will fail if the copy on the back of the bottle isn't amended. People will pick up on the shelves and put it right back down. The product is not yet on the official Gatorade Web site.