There was an interesting article in AdAge recently, about Pepsi resurrecting the “Pepsi challenge”
When I first glanced at it, I thought this was just a rehash of the consumer taste test challenge from the 70’s, but then I saw that it was part of a broader initiative which is described as its biggest “socially-led, content-driven initiative ever.”
Essentially, it combines celebrity, social-good challenges and consumers in a marketing effort which puts corporate social responsibility at the heart of Pepsi’s marketing strategy.
Each month, a celebrity will present a global or local challenge via social media and the programme will “lean heavily on social media, use celebrity ambassadors to drive awareness, urge consumer action and have a broader goal of doing good.”
The campaign will include digital content, point of sale, events and TV at a local and global level.
This is a prime example of a company which has recognised the concerns of consumers about social, economic and environmental issues on the one hand, and that addressing these issues as a central plank of their business strategy can give them competitive advantage and reinforce their brand.
But it’s also about good strategic marketing thinking – identifying consumer concerns, seeing a source of competitive advantage, developing a product/initiative to help solve the problem, and then an integrated communications strategy to engage consumers.
And it’s the reason why Pepsi will remain a major global brand.