Will MiO Change the Way We See Water?

For some reason we just can’t leave water alone. Most restaurants offer a choice of tap water or sparkling water–and then there’s the endless debate about environmentally-unfriendly bottled water.

Here to change the game entirely is MiO, the “liquid water enhancer” currently blowing up the Millennial demographic. Adding flavors to water is nothing new, of course, but the packaging and marketing of Mio has significantly affected the way consumers of every age view water consumption.

Sure, you’ve got lemonade mix and chocolate powder and flavored waters of every variety and combination, but Mio—olds in small, transportable packages—won’t be confined to your kitchen counter or glass pitchers mixed with wooden spoons. The product is a concentrated liquid ready to be squirted into your water source, making it ideal for teens looking to establish a cool factor at cafeteria tables and school sidewalks. The market campaign features animated animals called “Millen-imals” that are just as self-absorbed and obnoxious as real teenagers can be (come on, you know you were too).

Adults are next. In the wake of Mio’s success, mega-brands like Coca-Cola decided to delve into the liquid water enhancer market, and they’re currently exploring every potential niche in this nascent category. Mio, owned by Kraft, discovered marketing nirvana by creating an untapped behavior pattern that can appeal to anyone from kindergarteners looking to spruce up their lunches to time-strapped adults seeking a convenient way to add flavor to their glass of water (without adding any additional calories).

What are PR and marketing experts to make of this new liquid water enhancer trend? We are excited, because Mio’s runaway success represents something new in our field as well as a fresh-faced take on the public’s relationship with the most basic element on earth. We can learn from it in the same way scientists learn something new about our planet every time they discover an unknown species of jungle insect.

How will the general public respond? We’re not quite sure–and we can’t wait to find out.