Pepsi Refresh Project



Case Code : CLMC058
Publication date : 2013
Subject : Marketing Communications
Industry : Beverages
Length : 06 Pages
Price : Rs. 100

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Key words:

McDonald’s, advertisements, happy price menu, indianized menu


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In January 2010, PepsiCo Americas Beverages (PAB), a division of the US-based multinational food and beverage company, PepsiCo Inc., started a social marketing campaign - Pepsi Refresh Project - in the United States. PAB had aired its advertisements during the Superbowl every year for 23 years, but in 2010, it decided to use the money for Pepsi Refresh Project to fund initiatives put forth by users to refresh their communities. The case details the campaign and discusses if it was able to achieve the desired results.


  » What a cause campaign is
  » The role of the social media in non-traditional campaigns
  » Traditional advertising Vs. Social media advertising


Every year, PepsiCo Americas Beverages (PAB), a division of the US-based multinational food and beverage company, PepsiCo Inc. (PepsiCo), spent millions of dollars on airing advertisements during the SuperBowl . However, in 2010, the company decided to spend the money instead on a social marketing campaign - the Pepsi Refresh Project - through which it funded ideas that made a positive impact on citizens and the community. This was the first time that a major advertiser had transferred massive resources from traditional advertising to the social media.

In 2008, Pepsi conducted a survey among Americans aged above 18 years regarding their views on optimism. The project was called the Pepsi Optimism Project. The findings of the study showed that 94% of the people were of the view that optimism was essential to bring forth new ideas, and 66% opined that the best ideas came from people and communities and not from celebrities. PAB intended to engage users with itself, develop customer loyalty, and position itself as a company that strove to bring about positive changes in the communities where it was present, and be empathetic about the issues and ideas of those communities. Keeping this in view, PAB launched a new tagline, ‘Every generation refreshes the world’ in 2008 and also came out with a website The website aimed at delivering value to users and at helping them accomplish their goals. This led to the beginning of the online social media initiative, the Pepsi Refresh Project.... ...

Questions for Discussion:

1. What are the factors that have made companies look for non-traditional media for campaigns? Discuss.

2. Though the Pepsi Refresh Campaign was highly popular on the social media, it could not impact sales. Examine how a company can translate social media popularity into sales.

3. Would you advice Pepsi to go in for a similar campaign in other countries? Why/ Why not?

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