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Dasani Taps TLC Singer Chilli

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Chilli once advised “don’t go chasing waterfalls” as part of the Grammy award-winning group TLC. Today she is singing the praises of Coca-Cola’s Dasani and Dasani Essence water brands.

This month, the star will stress the fact that the "simple moments are most refreshing" in radio, print, digital and in-store ads. The campaign targets African American moms “in an effort to increase household penetration and frequency,” said Yolanda White, assistant vice president of African American marketing. Lambesis is the brand's agency.

Dasani’s sales volume in 2008 was up about 3 percent in the retail channel, per Beverage Digest. The category, overall, was down 0.4 percent in that channel.

White said African American women are heavy purchasers of packaged waters and that the new effort is about “invigorating women in a that allows her to escape her daily challenges.”

Chilli was selected because she’s a 38-year-old single mom who embodies the struggles and the balance “we see in our target audience,” said White. “She gives reassurance to moms that you can still be a great mom, take care of yourself and look beautiful.”

Radio ads will air on African American targeted stations. Print and online will appear in targeted publications and Web sites.

The effort will tout the core brand as well as the launch of Dasani Essence unsweetened, flavored waters which debuted in February. Coke spent $2 million on U.S. media behind the brand in 2008 (not including online), per Nielsen.