- Mtn Dew Rise Energy, a more caffeinated version of the soft drink, this week launched its first brand campaign, featuring a commercial starring LeBron James, per a press release.
- The 60-second "The Morning Makes You" spot illustrates what would happen if James decided to snooze in the mornings, contrasting that alternate reality with his accomplishments as a basketball player, father, businessman and philanthropist. Produced by agency TBWA\Chiat\Day NY, the spot will run nationally on broadcast and digital video platforms throughout the NBA Playoffs.
- The spot also marks the first time the four-time NBA champion is appearing in a campaign for a PepsiCo brand after switching from rival Coca-Cola. PepsiCo in March introduced Mtn Dew Rise Energy as an extension of the beverage brand into energy drinks.
The campaign for Mtn Dew Rise Energy is notable for introducing the brand in a major national campaign and as the first highly visible sign of its collaboration with LeBron James. PepsiCo introduced the energy drink in March and announced the NBA star would be the face of the brand and collaborate on promotions for Frito-Lay, the company's snacks division. The endorsement deal was significant considering James previously had been a celebrity spokesperson for archrival Coca-Cola the past 18 years, CNBC reported. James's status as a superstar athlete can help PepsiCo to raise visibility for Mtn Dew Rise Energy and establish the brand extension in the growing category of energy drinks.
Mtn Dew Rise is another entrant in the energy drink category that includes rivals such as Red Bull, Monster Energy and Coca-Cola Energy. The category also includes Rockstar, which recently launched its first global marketing platform since being acquired by PepsiCo for $3.85 billion last year. "Life is Your Stage" celebrates the hustle mentality of Rockstar's target audience — a similar message to the new "The Morning Makes You" spot.
Mtn Dew for years has traded off its formula as a caffeinated soft drink that fuels outdoor activities. That formula also made it popular among younger consumers who spend hours indoors glued to video games. The energy drink formula, which includes extra caffeine along with vitamins and minerals, may appeal to those same consumer groups. The brand already markets a version called Mtn Dew Game Fuel for fans of video games, esports and gaming livestreams. To strengthen its ties to those communities, Mtn Dew Game Fuel opened an online store in December to sell its full line of flavors and offer rewards for repeat purchases.
As the weather gets warmer and people spend more time outdoors, supporting demand for citrus-flavored soft drinks like Mtn Dew, the brand rolled out a variety of campaigns to raise awareness. Most recently, Mtn Dew announced plans to celebrate this year's Indianapolis 500 by installing green flags with inspiring messages from residents throughout a city park. Its "Project Green Means Go" campaign asked race fans in Indianapolis to show their community pride by submitting their messages to a microsite for a chance to see them printed on the flags. Mtn Dew previously created a "lost episode" of "The Joy of Painting," the instructional show hosted by the late landscape painter Bob Ross, to engage YouTube viewers feeling nostalgic for their pre-pandemic lives.