Pepsi Max in teen taste test

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A blind taste test aided Pepsi Max’s reputation
A blind taste test aided Pepsi Max’s reputation

The Offer: PepsiCo wanted to reintroduce reluctant teens in Belgium to its diet cola brand, Pepsi Max. It distributed thousands of cans of Pepsi Max, disguised as a new mystery cola called Black Can, in busy hubs like train stations and malls. Consumers were invited to try the new drink in a taste test and voted by SMS or online and earned the chance to win €10,000 for participating.

The Data: Research indicated that many had never tried Pepsi Max, but when asked, said they preferred Diet Coke. The taste test results, revealed 10 days after the start of the initial campaign, boasted that 73% of those who participated had enjoyed the taste of the concealed Pepsi Max soda. 

The Creative: Proximity BBDO Belgium worked on the campaign, which aimed for an interactive, energetic feel, from the taste tests through the website and text message coupons.

The Channel: Other channels engaged for the campaign promotion included radio, TV and online. It also created a social media buzz, capturing the interest of Belgian newspapers and blogs.

The Verdict: How about Pepsi with a fresh take on the classic taste test? The barrier they had to overcome was that people didn't like the idea of Pepsi Max, so they weren't trying it. By creating intrigue and mystery around the “black can experience,” they got people to listen to the one thing they can trust — their taste buds.

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