Most of you have probably caught wind at this point that Pepsi is going through a three-year $1.2 billion re-branding phase. Apparently, the focus will zone in on merchandising, marketing and new consumer connections without any changes to the actual product. Good news for us Pepsi lovers.
To that end, Steve Rubel announced on his blog and on Twitter last week that he’d be helping Edelman client Pepsi gather consumer feedback with the launch of The Pepsi Cooler – a room on FriendFeed intended to gather real-time feedback about Pepsi’s new brand. The room currently has 264 members with the discussion being moderated by Steve and Pepsi’s social media team.
Pepsi is also using Flickr and YouTube to post content around the new brand. In addition, the Pepsi team was smart in sending out new sample cans to a select group of 25 digital influencers, asking them to also join the FriendFeed room and provide feedback. Check out the reactions from a few of these influencers such as Peter Shankman and Chris Brogan.
It’s an interesting approach to dive in on FriendFeed as the central mode of communication. Some of the feedback being posted is that there is not enough opportunity to guide the interaction due to moderators being the only ones allowed to start new thread topics. From a PR standpoint, I can completely understand the importance of establishing some degree of control, especially when trying out a new forum such as this. I do wonder if they’ll eventually get a presence on Twitter as that seems to be a logical location to prompt real-time interaction and feedback.
Though my opinion wasn’t asked, I must say I echo the feedback of some out there in noting that my immediate thought about the new logo is…Obama! Not a bad brand to model after.
New Pepsi Logo
But hey, now it’s official, we are the voice of a new generation.