Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Pepsi Generation Gets Social

Photo: PepsCo
Maybe I'm dating myself by using the "Pepsi Generation" slogan.  I couldn't even tell you what Pepsi's slogan is today because I really don't drink soda.  Nothing personal, just not my thing.  I do however pay close attention to the marketing strategies of the big soda companies.  As a former employee of the media industry and a communications student at university I find companies like Pepsi are amazingly adept at identifying ways to communicate with youth.

Their latest idea is what they're calling a "social vending machine."  It features a large touch-screen that allows the user to choose a soda, get product information, send a soda to a friend or receive a soda from someone else .... what they're calling "Random Acts of Refreshment."

What's interesting about this style of vending is that it's using social media to advertise without being obvious about it.  True, Pepsi benefits by selling drinks, but on a social level the consumer feels like they are simply reaching out to their friends.  The logical extension for this would be the ability to use social media applications like Facebook and Twitter to access the service provided by the vending machine from any location.

The Social Vending Machine is currently be tested in various markets in the US.  No specific release plans have been announced, but when they do ... I prefer Mountain Dew.


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