As I was just watching Game 5 of the ALCS, a commercial came on the boob tube for Dr. Pepper’s latest offering: Dr. Pepper 10. The “10” in the name refers to the calorie count, which officially makes this beverage a diet soda. Now you might be thinking – doesn’t the Pepper already make a diet soda? – and the answer would be, yes, Diet Dr. Pepper.
But knowing that diets sodas, in theory, can be less appealing to men, the sharp folks in the marketing department decided to take an unconventional route in the promotion of this soda. The tagline?
It’s Not For Women.
Um, clever? While the ads for this drink are clearly tongue-in-cheek with their over-the-top manliness, I think they fall pretty flat. On one level it is a slight rip-off of the now transcendent Old Spice campaign in its outlandish testosterone use, and on another level, it’s just not a great idea – it’s labeled as not for women, but does that make it appealing to men by association? Yes, the packaging is now a “rugged” gun-metal gray, it uses HFCS instead of aspartame (chills), and it is getting decent reviews, but will this soda sell?
My guess is that it will end up like Pepsi Max, living on the fringes of the soda aisle, between Jamaica Jarritos and Tab. I think the market is already well-served with the regular Pepper, diet Pepper, or if you are really lucky, the Dublin variety. There is saturation, and then there is over-saturation. I think we are at the latter, and the marketing is not innovative enough to overcome it.
What do you think, readers? Does this campaign work? And more importantly, would you buy this soda?
H/t to The Daily Caller for picture at top.