One Blog |May 11, 2011 | POS Tracking Software

Finally a TV Ad About Point-of-Sale Marketing Campaigns - Ironic

Mark Fullerton

Perhaps like many people today, my wife and I rarely watch “live” TV. Sure, we will watch some sports “in real time,” but even then we tend to “TiVo” virtually everything, giving us the opportunity to start the big game from the beginning and skip through the commercials. Sound familiar?

The truth is that when I watch TV alone, even if it is recorded, I tend to watch at least half of the ads.  Candidly, I do like to watch TV ads and I look for the associated Point-of-Sale (POS) Marketing Campaigns at my favorite beverage retailer.  Oh, I also make my living providing solutions to help track, measure and manage these types of campaigns.

The TiVo (or DVR) effect is yet another reason for the declining impact of TV advertising and the reason most beverage suppliers have shifted significant dollars toward POS campaigns. After all, if a growing portion of your audience is fast-forwarding through your TV ads, that investment is not doing much for your brand.

Well, wouldn’t you know it, those clever TV Ad Men, ever keeping up with current trends, have put together a TV commercialabout POS!  Sure, the ad is supposedly promoting a beverage, Pepsi MAX, but the way the 60 seconds of video plays out, the commercial is clearly about the impact of POS and who – Coke Zero or Pepsi MAX – can  outdo the other in creating the most outrageous display.

One conclusion! He who has the best POS wins the battle for the customer’s dollars.

My conclusion is that some TV advertising executive finally realized that spot TV beverage advertising’s best days are in the past. A sort of “Jump the Shark” [1] moment in TV advertising. The use of Snoop Dogg rapping “I’m up to my knees in zero calories,”  may be just such a moment.

Even if my analysis is not 100% correct, it seems to me that Pepsi’s own explanation reaches a doubtful conclusion:

“The Pepsi Max driver and the Coke Zero driver meet once again – this time at a supercenter. The battle for the #1 zero-calorie soda begins as each driver attempts to build the most impressive POS display. A special appearance from the legendary Snoop Dogg makes it clear which cola is king.”

Uploaded to YouTube – by Pepsi.

This commercial makes it clear that the most impressive display is thought to be the most convincing reason for customers to buy Pepsi MAX. That it happens to be a TV ad praising the virtues of a competing advertising medium (POS) somehow strikes me as both accurate and ironic. The only question I have is: "Is the irony intentional?"

Well, that question is beyond the scope of this post. But before I go, I’m required to remind you that over 70% of the decisions to actually purchase your beverage product will occur at the point-of-sale.

I should also mention that our Blog is ‘the place’ on the Internet to learn about adopting tools that help you get the most out of your POS budget.

Finally, to further underscore the point that spot TV ads (especially for beverages) are waning in importance; and at a time when POS promotions seem to be increasing; I have been trying to find someone who has seen the Snoop Dogg Pepsi MAX spot on TV. No success, yet. Even my wife had never seen the ad until I showed it to her at the following YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnABZM83hqg 

Mark Fullerton

For more information about our products go to: www.ontraksoftware.com/products or call 800.513.9194.


[1]  The usage of "jump the shark" has broadened beyond its initial use in television, indicating the moment in its evolution – characterized by absurdity – when a brand, design, or creative effort (in this case a soft drink commercial) moves beyond the essential qualities that initially defined its success, beyond relevance or recovery.

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