Pepsi shows off end zone swagger with help from NFL stars
- With the NFL regular season about to kick off, Pepsi is rolling out a slew of football-themed content, according to a PepsiCo press release. A new campaign called "Fun Doesn't End Zone" launches with two video spots showcasing the end zone celebrations of the Pittsburg Steelers' Antonio Brown and the San Francisco 49ers' Joe Staley, with snarky sideline commentary provided by comedian and actor Rob Corddry.
- The ads will debut on TV for NFL Kickoff on Sept. 7. The full campaign includes weekly episodic content delivered via YouTube, with players answering "unexpected questions," the release said. Pepsi and NFL-themed GIFs featuring players will be made available for fans to share on social media.
- Pepsi will also host a concert on Sept. 9 with an iHeartRadio Washington DC station to celebrate a new partnership with the Redskins. LOCASH and Michael Tyler will perform, and prizes and game day swag will be given out at the event.
Football season is a huge sales opportunity for food and beverage brands — what's a game day viewing party without snacks? — and Pepsi is aiming for a touchdown this year with a number of big marketing plays. TV ads are a natural fit for reaching enthusiastic sports fans already glued to the tube, but the brand is also putting a heavier emphasis on digital integrations that will encourage viewers to turn to social media for sharing and engagement.
Sports aficionados often participate in "second-screen viewing" during games — that is, tweeting or posting their armchair analysis and updates as plays happen — so Pepsi is smart to provide GIFs featuring football stars to bolster those efforts, along with attaching a #PepsiFootball hashtag to the campaign.
Fun Doesn't End Zone also comes on the tails of a broader push from parent company PepsiCo called "They Win, You Score," which includes more of the CPG giant's brands like Frito-Lay. They Win, You Score is focused on specialty packaging, with customized Snapcodes consumers can take pictures of to unlock exclusive NFL content on Snapchat and the chance to win prizes. As is the case with Fun Doesn't End Zone, the packaging promotion is extended through digital tie-ins like a series of YouTube videos by Tostitos that show off the iconic rituals and lucky charms of different NFL teams.
The Fun Doesn’t End Zone videos, beyond featuring a comedic element delivered by Corddry, tap into the fact that the sports league has recently loosened its celebration rules, allowing creative players more leeway in how they boast about big plays and touchdowns.