Advertising that Works!
The original Pepsi Sip Challenge took place in 1975 and was conducted at malls, shopping centers, and other public locations. Pepsi’s purpose of the sip challenge was to see if consumers preferred the taste of Pepsi or Coca-Cola. Also, consumers do not know which is Pepsi or which is Coke. At the end of the challenge and after the consumer picks their preferred soda, the representative reveals the two bottles so they can see which one they picked.
How was Pepsi a success in this strategy? Later studies in neuro-marketing research, gathered from a three year study by Martin Lindstrom, reveal through fMRI’s that when the consumer did not know which they were tasting more than half preferred Pepsi. The unconscious part of the brain that was stimulated was the part that relates to taste.
Yet, when consumers did know which one was Pepsi and which one was Coca-Cola prior to tasting, 75% claimed they liked Coke better. There was a more positive association with the Coca-Cola brand than with Pepsi. Such associations can be history, logo, color, design, novelty, and nostalgia from childhood memories of drinking Coke. Emotions are part of the way in which our brain develops values and engages us with a brand.
Both companies used different strategies for their marketing. Which do you think worked best? Coca-Cola or Pepsi? Take our poll below and let us know which has the Advertising that Works!
View one of the early Pepsi Sip Challenges from 1977 below.
View one of the most early successful commercials from Coca-Cola in 1971, “Buy the World a Coke.”