Super Bowl Ad Impact Should Last More Than 30 to 60 Seconds

Claiming PepsiCo was everywhere during Super Bowl 58 would wildly understate matters.

The company went to the Super Bowl host site in Las Vegas, turned the Luxor’s pyramid into a giant Doritos ad, let fans get married in a Cheetos chapel at its Frito-Lay “Chip Strip” activation and unleashed actors/brand characters Dina and Mita on the town to promote Doritos Dinamita. That’s all before it pours a drop of the beverages it promoted with multiple Big Game ads.

In a Commerceweek conversation with ADWEEK senior editor Robert Klara in New York, PepsiCo Beverages North America svp of marketing Stacy Taffet noted that more than half of households in the United States have a PepsiCo product in them on Super Bowl Sunday. On that day, the company looks to “amplify brands that could use mass awareness” and use the Super Bowl’s more than 124 million viewers to push a brand through the rest of the year.

“We use the Super Bowl not only to advertise our brands … but also to drive sales,” Taffet said. “If you’ve been in a Walmart or a grocery store before the Super Bowl, you’re gonna see giant PepsiCo displays of our products and lots of value, and we’re encouraging people to enjoy the Super Bowl with PepsiCo products.”

PepsiCo launched its lemon-lime Starry brand just after the 2023 Super Bowl during last year’s NBA All-Star Weekend. This year, after racking up half a billion dollars in sales and making its way into 10% of U.S. households, Starry and old-school cell-shaded animated mascots Lem and Lime got their first Super Bowl ad with Ice Spice to reach the 60% of U.S. consumers who’d never heard of the brand.

Considering PepsiCo had burned through several lemon-lime brands throughout the decades—including Teem, Slice and Sierra Mist—hitting its target audience with a familiar face and a breakup kit featuring fuzzy slippers and Starry-flavored ice cream provided some needed relevance.

“Getting really laser focused on Gen Z is critical not just in terms of what the product tasted like and how we formulated it, but also how we built the brand … which is very much rooted in Gen Z culture,” Taffet said. “Ice Spice is a darling for that generation, and even the idea of ‘it’s time to see other sodas’ is relationship culture, breakup culture, celebrity relationships—that is a really hot topic right now amongst that generation.”

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