Diverse drinking

In Sweden, as in the U.S., people are bombarded by advertisements – in public transportation, on television, on billboards on the side of the street. There are ads for a variety of products in many industries and the general aesthetic is generally similar. We have found that advertisements tend to have very clean lines and simple designs with an emphasis on things being good, natural, and functional.

Sometimes, there are more noticeable differences when Swedish companies are competing in the same market but different market segments. One example is in bottled water. There are many ads for the two major players: Loka and Ramlösa. This time, we chose to evaluate television advertisements.



When watching commercials for the two companies, it is striking that Ramlösa uses the same theme song in every commercial with their bottles in front of the same blue sky background. Loka has a variety of ads. The ads generally target women, many include forest images or cite the brand’s sponsorship of the television show Desperate Housewives, which ended in 2010. Loka had also previously sponsored the show Friends.

Ramlösa was the first to market, the source of the water being discovered by Johan Jacob Döbelius in 1707. Ramlösa Brunnspark quickly became the site of a spa. Today, Ramlösa sells worldwide and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Carlsberg.

Loka was first a source of spring water in 1761 when it was used to support the health of King Adolf Fredrik. The water comes from Loka Brunn, which has been owned by Spendrups Brewery AB since 2006.

Both waters are sourced in Sweden. Loka is owned by a Swedish company and Ramlösa by a Danish company. Yet, their advertising strategy is quite different. Loka appears to work for a younger and more female crowd, while Ramlösa’s ads appear to be more typically Swedish. We have certainly seen both brands in a variety of locations, suggesting that they are probably both at least moderately successful.

Take a look at the ads and see what you think. Ramlösa = traditional Sweden? Loka = exciting water of the present and future?