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When Pepsi Co unveiled the stevia-based Pepsi True last week, the unofficial ceasefire between Coca-Cola and Pepsi came to a dramatic end and one of marketing's biggest rivalries sparked back to life.Pepsi True, which will go on sale in the US through Amazon later this month, will be packaged in a green-coloured can resembling Coca-Cola's Coke Life brand.
Not content with keeping their rivalry grounded on planet Earth, in 1985 Coke and Pepsi literally blasted off into space onboard the Space Shuttle Challenger.
But despite special cans for zero-G and various other technological innovations devised to enable the crew to drink cola in space, neither product impressed the astronauts.
Furthermore, as Malcolm Gladwell points out, there are a few qualms with the methodology of the “sip test,” which was put on by Pepsi Co.
Yet beyond the interaction of the fizzy soda against our palates there is another reaction affecting our tastes.
Maintaining a near duopoly on soda products, Coke and Pepsi are natural enemies.
The contention that exists between the two brands is best characterized by the well-known Pepsi Challenge, which asks strangers to sit down blindfolded, try both products, and decide once and for all which is superior.
We are pleased to introduce the first in a new Brandwatch blog series, pitting brand against brand in a social presence showdown.
For our inaugural post, what more appropriate place to begin than with the two most heated rivals in the beverage business: Coca-Cola and Pepsi Co.
The Pepsi Challenge has also featured in much of Pepsi’s TV advertising.
Coke later decided to play Pepsi at its own game, when in 2009 it ran a US promotion reminiscent of the Pepsi Challenge, trying to persuade consumers that its Vault drink tastes better than its rival's Mountain Dew.