Pepsi, the cola for the ‘NOW’ generation, is my brand for today’s #AtoZChallenge, for the theme ‘Brands that people identify with’.
You might be a tad surprised to know that the Pepsi brand, targeted at the youth market, is no less than a hundred years old. The Pepsi-Cola syrup was formulated in the late 1890s, by a pharmacist named Caleb Bradham living in New Bern, North California.
The rising popularity and demand for the Pepsi-Cola Syrup, led to the formation of Pepsi-Cola Company in 1902, which merged with Frito-Lay in 1965 to form PepsiCo, Inc.
Breaking out of the confine of the cola drinks, Pepsico diversified into restaurant business after acquiring Pizza Hut and Taco Bell in the late 1970s, and Kentucky Fried Chicken in 1986. But after all these acquisitions Pepsi began losing ground to Coca Cola in the soft drinks, and so the company decided to spin off its under-performing restaurants.
PepsiCo, has since expanded to a broader range of food and beverage brands, including sports drinks and bottled tea.
The Pepsi vs Coca Cola rivalry has been one of the most intense rivalries in the soft drink industry.
If Coca Cola is a timeless brand, Pepsi is for the NOW generation.
Capitalizing on the fact that Coca-Cola’s consumers now have a median age of 56, Pepsi continues to woo the youth market. While the Coca-Cola campaigns focus on enjoyable family moments, Pepsi differentiates itself with a distinct focus on millennials.
In response to Coca-Cola’s machine, Freestyle, Pepsi launched a self-serve soda dispenser Spire that allows Pepsi consumers to explore new taste combinations by adding different flavor shots to a base brand (say Diet Pepsi) via a digital touch screen.
The digital platform to drive engagement creates an image that appeals to the youth. The brand’s global campaign, “Live For Now,” made extensive use of social media channels like Twitter to bring live concerts to music fans.
Much like its rival CocaCola, the company spend millions every year on major sports events. Pepsi’s FIFA World Cup advertising campaign, “Now Is What You Make It,” helped to spread the brand’s message.
In India, the Mountain Dew campaign ‘Dew or Die’, invigorates the passion and nail biting excitement of the Pepsi IPL matches.
Recognized as one of the top 100 Global Brands by Interbrand, Pepsi continues to pursue the generation Now, with its young, trendy and rugged appeal.
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