An extract on #pepsi
In the early 1990s, a marketing fad equating clarity with purity began with the remake of Ivory soap from its classic milky solution; the idea spread to many companies, including PepsiCo. Crystal Pepsi was marketed as a caffeine-free "clear alternative" to normal colas, equating clarity with purity and health. Its marketing slogan was "You've never seen a taste like this."
In 1992, PepsiCo introduced Crystal Pepsi to test markets in Denver, Sacramento, Dallas, Providence, and Grand Rapids, and the product generated a positive response. Pleased with the results, PepsiCo launched the cola on April 12, 1992, and began to sell it nationwide in 1993. A large marketing campaign was launched, for which the company invented the world's first photo-realistic, computer-generated bus wrap printing. A series of television advertisements featuring Van Halen's hit song "Right Now" premiered on national television on January 31, 1993, during Super Bowl XXVII. Another marketing ploy was to give out full sized sample bottles with the Sunday paper deliveries such as the Boston Globe in Massachusetts. In its first year, Crystal Pepsi captured a full percentage point of U.S. soft drink sales, approximately $474 million. Coca-Cola followed suit by launching Tab Clear on December 14, 1992.
Initial sales were good but quickly fell. By fall 1993, Pepsi pulled the drink off the market, and the final batches were delivered to retailers during the first few months of 1994. Pepsi returned several months later with a reformulated citrus/cola hybrid titled Crystal From Pepsi, but that was short-lived as well.
According to Coca-Cola Chief Marketing Officer Sergio Zyman, Tab Clear was an intentionally "suicidal," "kamikaze" effort to create an unpopular beverage that was positioned as an analogue of Crystal Pepsi in order to "kill both in the process." The "born to die" strategy included using the poor-performing Tab brand rather than Coke, labeling the product as a "sugar free" diet drink to confuse consumers into thinking Crystal Pepsi had no sugar, and marketing the product as if it were "medicinal." Zyman said "Pepsi spent an enormous amount of money on the brand and, regardless, we killed it. Both of them were dead within six months."
Yum! Brands Chairman David C. Novak is credited with introducing the Crystal Pepsi concept. In a December 2007 interview, he stated:
It was a tremendous learning experience. I still think it's the best idea I ever had, and the worst executed. A lot of times as a leader you think, "They don't get it; they don't see my vision." People were saying we should stop and address some issues along the way, and they were right. It would have been nice if I'd made sure the product tasted good. Once you have a great idea and you blow it, you don't get a chance to resurrect it.