Pepsi’s Cringeworthy Marketing Moment

You know your marketing is bad when you take attention away from politics for a moment. Even our president couldn’t top Pepsi’s latest bomb of an ad that was received so badly, it had to be pulled almost immediately. Check it out.

Pepsi tried so hard to be hip and of-the-moment with their ad depicting a a protest/march that they totally missed the mark on their message, actually suggesting that peace could be achieved by offering a soft drink. This suggestion offended a lot of people. Twitter exploded in the aftermath.

But for me, the biggest question this raises, is how did this commercial get off the drawing board? How did it go through rounds of pitches and approvals without someone stepping up and saying, “Wait a minute…”?

Late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel pretty much nailed it: “The fact that this somehow made it through, I can’t imagine how many meetings, and edits, and pitches, and then got the thumbs-up from who knows how many people is absolutely mind-boggling.”

The major problem may have been that the ad was created by Pepsi’s in house team. Pepsi may have had their own blinders on and not been able to see the content from an outsider’s perspective. This is precisely when outsourcing your marketing comes in handy. Plus, out outside agency would have had the resources to test the concept with a larger group of consumers.

The lesson here? An outside opinion is always valuable!

 

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