SBD/April 19, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

New Pepsi Max Commercials Feature Current, Former MLBers

Longtime MLB corporate sponsor Pepsi has unveiled a trio of new baseball-themed spots directed by the legendary Joe Pytka and based on the film "Field of Dreams." The ads include a bevy of baseball talent, such as HOFers Mike Schmidt, Rollie Fingers, Ozzie Smith and Rickey Henderson. "We like to take things that are familiar and naturally engaging to consumers and put a little humor and some Pepsi in it," said Pepsi Max Senior Marketing Dir Amy Wirtanen, during a showing of the ads from agency TBWA\Chiat\Day at the MLB Fan Cave in Greenwich Village. The ads debuted today and will run in and outside of MLB programming. Digital extensions and POS sampling at retail and ballparks will support the campaign. Additional promotional extensions are likely by promotions at or after midseason. Pepsi has sponsorships with 15 of the 30 MLB teams. Max, Pepsi’s answer to the Coke Zero brand, is now tied to three of Pepsi’s largest sports sponsorships: the NFL, the NHL and MLB. "Max is very young-male focused, so it’s a primary focus of our sports," said PepsiCo Dir of Sports Marketing Mark Rooks. "But we still support our Pepsi brand some with baseball, and Aquafina is tied to our MLB youth and grassroots efforts."
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