Branding: Commercial Wars Between Coke and Pepsi


TV commercials are a really important part of a brand's identity, along with the logo and slogans used over time. Just as the other parts of the identity, it tells us a lot about the company's positioning. Also, we get to see how they find themselves within the market.

We manage to find 2 basic characteristics in these commercials: the use/or not of celebrities and the use/or not of emotional appeal. Mostly, all Pepsi commercials tend to use celebrities, and have no emotional appeal. They're just selling their product, and don't bother to attach any kind of feeling to that. Check out these Pepsi commercials:

Michael Jackson. We drink Pepsi and dance... yay.

Cindy Crowford. That one hot chick drinks pepsi. And that's it.

Spice Girls. We used to be huge, and since we drink Pepsi, you should drink it too.

Christina Aguilera / Ozzy Osbourne. WHAT? Seriously...

Beyonce / Britney Spears / Pink. We are hot and we will rock you if you don't share your Pepsi with people.

Kylie Minogue. If you drink Pepsi, you'll be so freaking cool, that even that untouchable celebrity will want you.

On the other hand, Coca-Cola keeps the same strategy from the beginning: we are a traditional brand, people know us and know the quality of our product. Also, for being such a solid brand, they keep positioning themselves as an emotional brand. It sells tradition, warm feelings, brotherhood and happiness. Check these commercials out:

Happiness Factory.

Give a little love.

Polar Bears.

Polar Bears and Penguins.

Santa Claus.

The Christmas trucks.

So, as you can see, these 2 brands have their own, singular positioning. And it's very clear why most people tend to choose Coke over Pepsi. Coke sells all the things that bring people together. Pepsi sells futility. And no, I'm not a Coke fan.

Now, trying to be neutral, how do you guys see these commercials? Do you see them like me? Is Coke's positioning really the best one or Pepsi makes its way selling a product, not a feeling? You tell us! We'd love to hear from you. Cheers! ;)

Written by

Paulo Gabriel

I'm Paulo Gabriel, a Publicist by degree and Front-end Developer/Designer by passion with a taste for the meaningful and emotional. Here at Abduzeedo, I always try to bring you only amazing content, things that mean something for me and for those around me.