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PepsiCo exec: Mobile is front door to Internet of Things

NEW YORK - A PepsiCo executive at the Mobile Marketing Association?s SM2 Innovation Summit discussed the importance of sending relevant messages in a Q&A with the host of Bloomberg TV?s C-Suite, Jeffrey Hayzlett.

The executive?s ?Inside the C-Suite: Mobile as a Growth & Engagement Tool? keynote session focused on understanding mobile as a way to promote company growth and keeping in mind the personal connotation that individuals associate with their mobile devices. Essentially, mobile has become the new computer, and its omnipresence should not be ignored by brands and marketers.

?Mobile is this other place; no matter what physical location you are in, you can create media in that place,? said Frank Cooper III, chief marketing officer of global consumer engagement at PepsiCo, Inc. ?That, to me, is the massive unlock for mobile. It goes one step further now: it?s the front door to the Internet of Things.?

Branding for mobile

Fine-tuning branding messages and sending the right messages at the right time was heavily stressed. Mobile devices are some of the most important, personal items that an individual owns, and that information must be taken into account when marketing via mobile.

?This is the most personal, intimate device people have,? Mr. Cooper said. ?People will give you their wallet before their mobile device.?

Brands should decide whether they want to send personal or communal messages to target audiences, because from a company perspective, the manner in which you connect with potential consumers and build that relationship is fundamentally different.

Information should also be mobile-optimized, and that may call for some brands to undergo a cultural shift.

?For brands that became iconic in the 20th century, it?s difficult,? Mr. Cooper said. ?For lifestyle brands, what?s really moving products is the backstory behind the product and understanding the culture around consumers who want to buy your product.?

PepsiCo believes in this philosophy and prefers to look at classic marketing through a different lens.

Relevant messaging

The brand also frequently collaborates with a myriad of partners in the media and entertainment world in order to provide relevant content to its consumers? interests and daily lives. PepsiCo?s partnership with Twitter centered around music greatly drove sales and user engagement, in online and offline transactions.

?The space for interruption is really small,? Mr. Cooper said. ?I believe we have to deliver something to the user that they really want.?

When the session shifted to discussion about beacons, Mr. Cooper said that while people should opt-in to receive relevant messages, brands should ensure that privacy is at the forefront of their minds.

Mr. Cooper also divulged that his proudest mobile moment was one that likely garnered the least publicity. In 2007, PepsiCo teamed up with 7-Eleven to promote video game Halo 3 with an augmented reality campaign and created Game Fuel, a Mountain Dew variant associated with the game.

Consumers were able to take a picture of a logo and then create an experience. However, despite the mobile angle, the campaign happened in-store and the consumers interacted with the product on-site, which effectively combined classic and mobile marketing.

Ultimately, brands should aim to deliver high-quality, exciting content that offer relevance to the brand?s purpose and the consumer?s interests.

?We tell stories that try to take meaning around our brand,? Mr. Cooper said.

Final Take
Alex Samuely is an editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York