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Pepsi anchors Oscars promotion with SMS

Pepsi continues to rely on mobile to activate its paper products with a new SMS-triggered sweepstakes that gives fans a chance to win a trip to celebrate the upcoming 86th Academy Awards show.

Pepsi has partnered with Regal Entertainment Group on the ?Sip Like a Star? campaign that plasters SMS keywords on the soda giant?s cups sold in movie theaters. The campaign runs through Feb. 14.

?We?ve found that consumers are more willing to engage in a promotion via SMS than other methods of entry because it?s quick, convenient and now an extremely commonplace form of communication,? said Gina Anderson, director of media relations at PepsiCo, Purchase, NY.

Sip to win
Pepsi has placed SMS calls-to-action on all fountain drink cups at Regal?s Hollywood Theatres locations.

To enter the sweepstakes, consumers can text a unique code on the cup to the short code MOVIES or 699376.

Users are then sent a reply message asking for their date of birth to find out if they are an instant winner.

Running an SMS sweepstakes remains to be an effective way that marketers activate sweepstakes, despite the increase in newer technologies.

In this case, Pepsi?s campaign is clearly labeled, and the value in texting to win is simple for consumers.

Additionally, Pepsi has set up a microsite for the campaign at that is optimized for mobile devices.

Consumers who choose to enter online can fill out an entry form with their email address, phone number and birthday.

Regal and Pepsi are giving away a grand prize trip to Los Angeles for the 2014 Oscars, which take place on March 2.

The prize package includes airfare, car service, hotel accommodations, access to the Red Carpet before the show and two tickets to a viewing party hosted by InStyle.

Other prizes include Regal Cinemas gift cards and Pepsi products.

Mobile promotion
To get the word out about the campaign, Pepsi is running a mobile ad campaign featuring a 30-second video clip that is also running in theaters.

Sofia Vergara stars in the clip and explains how the text-to-win sweepstakes works.

Pepsi has leveraged a variety of mobile tactics to bring its products to life for different campaigns.

Most recently, Pepsi rolled out a global campaign that uses the Blippar mobile app to activate nearly 20 million cans (see story). 

Additionally, Pepsi plastered QR codes on cups in 2012 as part of its Live For Now campaign (see story). 

?To Regal, this promotion is a natural way for us to join our guests showing our love of movies and excitement for the biggest night for movies all year long at the Oscars,? said Russ Nunley, vice president of marketing and communications at Regal Entertainment Group, Knoxville, TN.

?The text-to-win option is certainly popular because it?s so easy to fulfill with the proliferation of little computers in everyone?s pockets these days,? he said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Marketer, New York