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Pepsi Next extends campaign with ‘Internet Taste Test’

BY Allison Cerra

PURCHASE, N.Y. — Pepsi Next is using social media for its latest marketing campaign.

Part of its "Drink it to Believe it" campaign, Pepsi Next, designed to provide consumers with real cola taste with 60% less sugar, has launched the "Internet Taste Test" on its Facebook page. The taste test taps comedians and actors from FunnyOrDie.com who will do their best impressions of selected consumer and notable personalities’ "online personas" trying Pepsi Next and use relevant information from their profiles, such as recent "experiences" and "likes." The first taste test kicks off with a video starring actor and comedian Rob Riggle, the company said.

"To launch Pepsi Next, we’re focused on getting consumers to ‘Drink it to Believe it’ — even online, in a fun and uniquely digital way," PepsiCo head of digital Shiv Singh said. "The Pepsi Next Internet Taste Test demonstrates how a brand can utilize social media to create consumer-driven, personalized branded entertainment."

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Vapor expands e-cigarette line

BY Michael Johnsen

HALLANDALE, Fla. — Vapor recently expanded its e-cigarette offerings across its Krave brand.

The company has constructed a complete retail-rack-ready, rechargeable e-cigarette program for its vendors of Krave1000 and Krave1001. The e-cigarettes are available in four versions featuring a high/low nicotine level option and tobacco and menthol flavors, along with starter kits and charger accessories.

The company’s Krave300 brand expands its flavor profile beyond tobacco and menthol with a Fruits Collection — which includes apple, blueberry, grape, peach and strawberry flavors — and a Sweets Collection — cappuccino, chocolate, red wine, spiced rum and vanilla. Vapor also is introducing Krave300 Bold, which features a 2.4% nicotine by volume strength.

The Krave300 lines are merchandised as part of a 10-unit, point-of-purchase display.

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Sharkies makes retail debut

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK — A new line of organic energy sports chews has hit the market.

New Sharkies, designed to to be enjoyed by anyone who lives an active lifestyle, are certified organic by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, do not contain any artificial dyes and flavors, and are free of fat, gluten, wheat, nuts and dairy. Each snack are designed to replenish what’s lost during exercise by touting 110 mg sodium, 30 mg potassium, and 36 g total carbohydrates per serving. the company said.

Sharkies are available in Berry Blast, Fruit Splash, Citrus Squeeze and Watermelon Scream flavors for a suggested retail price of $1.39.

Sharkies also includes a line for kids: organic fruit chews, packed with 100% daily value of vitamin C and contain no artificial dyes or flavors, as well as Sharkies Omega-3 Smart Twists, which give kids essential omega-3s in a twisted rope and touts an equivalent to a serving of fruit and packed with 100% daily value of vitamin C.

Sharkies organic fruit chews are available in Berry Bites and Fruit Splash flavors, while the Sharkies Omega-3 Smart Twists are available in Berry Surf and Tropical Wave varieties. Both of the kids’ snacks carry an SRP of $3.99.

"Every athlete looks for something different when it comes to sports nutrition," Sharkies director of marketing Anthony Trani said. "And whether they’re training for their first 5k race or their second marathon of the year, one thing is certain — they care about what they put in their body — and we’re happy to be able to offer the clean fuel that helps them get to their goal."

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