The “Buzz” Around Monster Energy Drinks
The popularity of energy drinks continues to gain a massive following. Targeting specific demographics, brands like Red Bull and Monster are dominating the industry, but others still hold their own weight, like the 5 Hour Energy “shots”, Amp drinks, Full Throttle, and more. Some, like Sparks, even contains alcohol. In a previous post we examined the fact that long term health problems could occur, prompting the question: are energy drinks bad for you? The one thing we do know is that these beverages are entrenched as a viable alternative to coffee and soda, and particularly marketed to men in the 18-34 demographic range.
Monster Energy Drinks
The correlation between addiction and recovery and energy drinks may at first seem dissimilar, but on closer look it is shocking to see some of the ways they are marketed. These marketing techniques, while effective, can be detrimental to those people in recovery, striving to stay away from alcohol or drug related products. Monster energy drinks, for example, have a massive product line that is geared to appeal to a wide range of people. The “Assault” drink may be intriguing to political aficionados with the tag line “viva la revolution” stamped around a red camouflage can. Other products, like “Energy Juice” and “Dub Edition” seems to be marketed to athletes and “true ballers” respectively. Monster also markets to those people who like to enjoy other types of libations and this is where discernment in recovery is a must.
Monster Marketing Towards Addicts
The Ubermonster drink comes in a green bottle that bears a striking resemblance to a beer bottle, complete with gothic lettering with the words “energy brew” printed on the label. The product description on the website includes the phrases “fermented malted barley”, “energy brew has clean, crisp taste”, “evil energy brewski”, “chugger-friendly cap”, and “cheers, this energy brew’s for you.” Is this a German lager beer or an energy drink? The Ubermonster is alcohol free (prompting the question: “Do energy drinks have alcohol?”), and if that deters anyone, there are alcoholic energy drinks available, buyer beware. Oh, and if the Ubermonster is too blatant for you, Monster offers the “Import Light” energy drink for those “gym rats [and] calorie counters.” Other products tout the descriptions “double shot, killer brew, buzz”, and “smooth flavor you can really pound down.”
The most provocative product line Monster sells may be the “Rehab” energy drinks. “Rehab” also stands for rehabilitation, as in recovering or rehabilitating from a night of hard partying. Monster had a “Rehab Pool Party Sweepstakes” in Las Vegas earlier this year. Another subliminal message was the RX symbol interposed in the word “Rehab” on the advertisement. The use or abuse prescription pain and other medications seems to be invoked here. People recovering from substance abuse addictions need to be wary of these ad campaigns that may beguile or trick those early in sobriety. An alcoholic in recovery may not abstain from caffeine, but drinking from a wide mouth “chugger-friendly” bottle may not be the best fix.