May 23, 2011 Leave a comment
When I was finding an old commercial of Cindy Crawford for yesterday’s post, one of YouTube’s recommended videos was for Crystal Pepsi. Crystal Pepsi came out when I was 6 years old, and it is one of the early commercials in my life that I remember vividly. According to Wikipedia, in the early ’90s, there was a marketing trend that associated clearness with purity. Crystal Pepsi was advertised as a caffeine-free clear cola that had a classic Pepsi taste. Pepsi put their big guns on the project, and created a Super Bowl commercial featuring Van Halen’s “Right Now.”
The commercial conveyed the excitement of a product that for lack of a better term, had a “right now” feeling. I convinced my dad to buy a bottle, despite the fact that I didn’t even drink soda at this point (the bubbles burned my tongue). Crystal Pepsi’s sales were good initially, but fell quickly, as consumers saw it as a mere gimmick. Anyone with the slightest marketing knowledge knows that it’s a huge effort to get people to change from an item with which they have a connection. Just look at the example of New Coke, often known as the biggest commercial flop of all time. So Crystal Pepsi went away almost as fast as it came. But don’t worry, if you watch enough ’90s nostalgia shows on VH1, you’ll inevitably see a segment about it.