sip on this

From True to Life, the Cola Wars Continue

Posted by Dale Buss on October 3, 2014 10:37 AM

In the latest stage of the ongoing cola wars, the kings of carbonated beverages are going green—on the outside—and lean, on the inside. PepsiCo just introduced a new mid-calorie variety called Pepsi True that uses a combination of stevia and sugar to provide a reduced calorie count, just like Coca-Cola Life. It comes in a green can, just like Coca-Cola Life.

And just like Coca-Cola Life that initially was only offered in Argentina, PepsiCo has put a twist on how it will first make Pepsi True available: exclusively on Amazon (where Coca-Cola is also exclusively reviving its Surge brand) before it hits US stores. Of course, the two brands also could end up sharing the same basic plight: mid-cal soft drinks haven't attained much of a following anywhere yet.

For PepsiCo, the big bet is that Pepsi True will do a better job in the so-called mid-calorie space—not "low calorie" like diet sodas, but not full-calorie either, like the traditional flagships Pepsi and Coke—than the company's previous offering, Pepsi Next.Continue reading...

sip on this

Critics Make a Dent in Coke's Can as Brand Steps Up Health Marketing

Posted by Dale Buss on July 31, 2014 04:04 PM

Things aren't going well for Coca-Cola these days. While the company still returned $47 billion in profits last year, that amount was down by more than $1 billion from 2012.

That may not seem like much of a problem, but as newly chronicled in places ranging from the cover of the new issue of Bloomberg Businessweek to a prominent story in this morning’s Wall Street Journal, minting profits—and sales—for Coca-Cola no longer is as simple as filling another bottle or can. The company and, especially, the brand are being hit with unprecedented resistance these days that is so stiff, some worry it ultimately could be existential for Coca-Cola.

Consumption of soda globally fell in the first quarter for the first time since 1999, though they rebounded in the second quarter; and the consumption slide continues in the US as the brand remains under assault from anti-obesity activists and politicians for its sugar and calorie content, while Diet Coke increasingly is suffering attrition as well because of concerns about aspartame. Meanwhile, new beverage startups in the flavored water and tea categories in which Coke has invested aren’t growing quickly enough to offset the continued losses in soda consumption.Continue reading...

Coke Promotes India-Pakistan Peace, Higher Market Share

Posted by Abe Sauer on May 21, 2013 11:43 AM

Avoiding nuclear armageddon is great but avoiding nuclear armageddon with an icy cold Coca-Cola is better. As the saying goes, "Things go better with Coke."

The latest entry into the historical record of branding campaigns is Coca-Cola's new endeavor "to break down barriers and create a simple moment of connection between two nations—India and Pakistan."

On the sincere surface, it's a genuinely heartfelt message that creates an emotional bond with the brand. A more cynical reading is that it's a genuinely heartfelt message that creates an emotional bond with the brand in two markets in which Coca-Cola's market percentage lags.Continue reading...

celebrity brandmatch

Diet Coke Releases New Taylor Swift 'Music That Moves' Spot

Posted by Alicia Ciccone on April 11, 2013 08:12 PM

Pepsi isn't the only cola brand that has a songstress on its payroll. Diet Coke has been busy collaborating with golden-girl Taylor Swift for the next installment of its "Stay Extraordinary" campaign. 

Debuting during the American Idol broadcast on FOX Thursday night, Swift's new spot, "Music That Moves," highlight's the Grammy-winner's unique approach to song writing. Created by Droga5, the spot captures Swift in her natural element, penning lyrics whenever inspiration strikes—with a Diet Coke in hand, of course.Continue reading...

celebrity brandmatch

PepsiCo Releases Beyonce Dance-Off TV Commercial for Pepsi and Pepsi Max

Posted by Shirley Brady on April 4, 2013 11:05 AM

Beyonce's new TV commercial for Pepsi was released today after being teased on Wednesday.

Reinforcing Pepsi's "Live for Now" global tagline, the "Mirrors" spot features a Bey dance-off with her many personas including alter-ego Sasha Fierce — watch it below.Continue reading...

celebrity designers

Diet Pepsi Teams Up with Vern Yip for Limited Edition Designer Mini Cans

Posted by Dale Buss on March 29, 2013 03:16 PM

Converging with a major trend in branding, Diet Pepsi asked HGTV star designer Vern Yip to come up with a new limited-edition mini-can that will invite consumers to "Sip in Style" this spring. The soon-to-hit shelves can continues the brands' multi-platform "Love Every Sip" campaign that has starred Sofia Vergara in TV ads.

While arguably Yip comprises only a "light" instance of the phenomenon, Diet Pepsi's collaboration with him also adds to the growing number of partnerships between celebrities and brands to fill or originate "creative director" spots, including Alicia Keys and BlackBerry, Swizz Beatz and Reebok, Marc Jacobs and Diet Coke, Polaroid and Lady Gaga, Bud Light Platinum and Justin Timberlake and Intel and Will.i.am.Continue reading...

corporate citizenship

Cola Wars Go Soft with Do Good Campaigns

Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 29, 2013 10:33 AM

Plenty of people in developing nations can get their hands on Coca-Colas, but they can’t seem to always get themselves the right medicine to keep one in nine children from dying before the age of five. Something wasn’t quite right with that equation and nonprofit ColaLife found a way to right the imbalance: ship the medical products with the Coke. The first test of this will take place in Zambia, Africa.

“Utilizing a new packaging technique, ColaLife aims to distribute ‘social products,’ such as oral rehydration salts and zinc supplements, to help sick children in need of medication,” Fox News reports. “The medication will be packaged in newly developed AidPods, which are wedge-shaped to fit in-between the necks of the Coke bottles in a crate of Coca-Cola.” Not only do the AidPods carry micronutrients and supplies to fight dehydration, but they also become water-sterilization containers when emptied out.

Certainly it behooves Coke to get involved in such a project since cola companies in general take a beating about marketing their sugary products to children. Coke has been immersed in an anti-obesity campaign that promotes exercise and healthy eating and, of course, drinking Coke.Continue reading...

package design

The Shape of Things to Come: Pepsi's New Bottle Design Reinvigorates Brand

Posted by Sheila Shayon on March 24, 2013 09:03 PM

Pepsi is redesigning its 16 and 20-ounce bottles for the first time since 1977 — one in a series of recent moves (see: the recent Super Bowl halftime show sponsorship and related landmark partnership with superstar Beyonce) as PepsiCo attempts to revitalize its flagship brand after a few mis-steps that led to the brand losing market share to rival Coca-Cola's Diet Coke brand in 2011.

The new design features a swirled grip on the bottom portion of the bottle, a shorter label edged in a "cola-colored" border and an enlarged version of its current globe logo and applies to Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi Max and Pepsi Next. 

"This new bottle is the next milestone in Pepsi's Live For Now marketing campaign," stated Angelique Krembs, VP of marketing for the Pepsi trademark. "Our single serve bottle is the most visible and tangible connection point we have with our consumers, and we love how the new bottle expresses our brand DNA."

"We started with single serve, because it is the package you're seen drinking and holding," Krembs told Ad Age. "The longer-term view is this new design system would eventually hit all touch points beyond packaging, to be honest, but certainly all other package types, as it applies."

According to PepsiCo's press release, "The new bottle's bold swirl and elevated profile reflect the brand's attributes and youthful spirit, capturing the excitement of now for Pepsi consumers. The etched, grip-able bottom allows consumers to have a more stimulating, tactile interaction with the bottle itself."Continue reading...

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