[Retro Vibes] How Pepsi turned the summer of 2020 into the coolest retro party

[Retro Vibes] How Pepsi turned the summer of 2020 into the coolest retro party

How to bring people together again in the summer of 2020? You move the fun online and invite the most important names in Romanian music. You give rhythm to the party with the songs we all danced to the past few summers. You also launch a collection of retro-cool clothes and start the longest Romanian brand challenge on Tik Tok. This summer's Pepsi campaign has shown that advertising can find new resources even in limited conditions. Creativity feeds on openness to experimentation.


A summer-long party

This summer, Pepsi went back in time and brought back to our attention the cool things from the past, which are still relevant today. With the help of technology, innovation, special online events and some notable artists, we were able to relive them once again. Fashion (via SnkrInd), comedy (via project with stand-up comedians), dance (TikTok), music (song launching). Pepsi was visible in several scopes, and it interconnected them through good mood. The brand was also present on several platforms & channels, giving rhythm to the party no matter where its consumers were: on TV, on the radio, Facebook, Instagram, Spotify, TikTok, YouTube.

The current context challenged us to find new ways of interacting and communicating with our consumers, ways that are relevant and adapted to the current times. In a difficult time, Pepsi, the Cola brand that has been with Romanians for over 55 years, took on the mission of staying by their side and of bringing back some of the valuable local creations into the light: whether we talk about the creative reinterpretation of romanian songs, about remembering funny childhood games and their decline in the digital version, the rendering of well-known stand-up moments from the past in a current version, or the support of Romanian businesses by launching a capsule-collection of retro-cool clothes, or the support of the hospitality industry locations through dedicated campaigns, all done in order to invite the audience to not forget to enjoy Romania! #Pepsi, the taste of all generations, says Delia CorniciucSr. Marketing Manager Beverages.

The Pepsi Summer 2020 campaign had it all: the music of past summers, reinterpreted by the artists of today at Pepsi Retro Studio, Tik Tok challenges, Instagram digital hunt, campaigns for the hospitality industry and the launch of a retro fashion collection, in partnership with Sneaker Industry. But let's get to them one by one. 

Pepsi-Cola is a brand in a special relationship with the Romanian public. Beyond the legendary taste, each bottle of Pepsi-Cola comes with an impressive emotional baggage: it's the soul of the party, it's the reason why you spend some more time outside with your friends, it's a dose of optimism and energy you need to feel good. And these values must not be changed because several generations of consumers relate to them. This was the insight on which we built this year’s new Pepsi Retro Studio summer campaign, a wide-ranging campaign, with many points of interest for consumers of all ages: from music to fashion, from playing Romanian games to stand-up comedy, from the mountains to the seaside. Everything was an opportunity to reinvent and rediscover the Romanian values of yesterday and today, says Iuliana Dragomir, Sr. Brand Manager

The party started at Pepsi Retro Studio, where the most important names in Romanian music transformed the popular rhythms of the past and gave them the rhythm of 2020. Smiley, Feli, Mira, Lino Golden and Amuly reinterpreted songs that defined the years in which they were launched and they founded the symbols of generations. Adeline, Amintirile, Dragostea din Tei, Gasca mea and Oare stii can be watched and listened to on the Youtube Pepsi channel in their new versions.

From cassettes to Spotify, from apartment parties to TikTok parties, from Smiley to Amuly. The same goes for digital: we started communicating on YouTube and Facebook, and then we went to TikTok. Meanwhile, thousands of consumers were discovering our playlist on Spotify or were joining the digital hunt on Instagram, made in collaboration with SNKR Ind.

In parallel, we also carried out a campaign in the hospitality industry, which was built around the visual recognition chatbot on Facebook - Pepsi thus becoming the first brand in FMCG to use such a national promotion mechanism. Beyond the awards or the very good results of the campaign, all that matters is that Pepsi has managed to continue the dialogue with all the consumers, regardless of generation, says Laurențiu Ion, Sr. Digital & Media Manager Beverages


The longest series of TikTok challenges

Artists or not, we all need inspiration and a story to give meaning to the things that happen to us. Especially in the summer of 2020. So the party went on Tik Tok, where the brand started a challenge with dance, music and fun. Each song release had a challenge dedicated to it on TikTok, with original sound (cut from the released song). #SiIeriSiAzi thus became the longest series of challenges on TikTok of a brand in Romania. 

Also, any party needs appropriate apparel. Pepsi, together with the 100% Romanian brand built on the passion for streetwear Sneaker Industry, launched a capsule collection of retro-cool urban clothes Pepsi & SNKRIND. The collection had its own presentation film, a lookbook created with professional photographers and, of course, a sneakerheads launch: an Instagram digital hunt. 

Pepsi also started a tag competition, an “Oracle” contest (Oracol – in Romanian, with the meaning of a notebook) and a comedian project on Instagram.

The brand developed a filter that uses AR technology to bring back the childhood “tag, you’re it” into the digital. The filter generates funny scenarios, and the people could tag a friend who regularly does that scenario

Oracle IG was another formula for connecting with consumers. Through the IG story, people were answering questions from the Pepsi  “Oracle”. 

In this mix of music, dance, retro-cool vibe and fashion, humour could not lack. Through a special partnership with Pepsi, three comedians from Romania launch short videos in which they present moments of retro style stand-up. 

Moreover, Pepsi also had a campaign dedicated to the hospitality industry segment, bringing fun and cool prizes to partner locations all across the country. Consumers were able to enter restaurant receipts to win retro-cool prizes. 

We are happy with the very good results both in the business area and also in the brand equity area, the consumers enjoyed all the activities prepared for this campaign, from the relevant content of communication to the activations in stores and the prizes offered within them. Once again, the Pepsi-Cola brand resonated with the target audience, managing to build a dialogue over generations, beyond time and eras, says Iuliana Dragomir, Sr. Pepsi Brand Manager 

This summer, Pepsi demonstrated that innovation and technology can also be put in the service of fun and it showed what it really means to celebrate pop culture and to encourage individuality. Pepsi Summer 2020 reminded of the most retro-cool things of past summers and threw the biggest party this summer, through music, dance, fashion and humor.


The Team

Delia Corniciuc – Sr. Marketing Manager Beverages
Iuliana Dragomir – Sr. Brand Manager
Alexandra Constantin – Brand Manager
Ema Bădângă – Jr. Brand Manager
Georgiana Nițu – Jr. Brand Manager
Laurențiu Ion – Sr. Digital & Media Manager Beverages
Oana Andone – Digital Specialist Beverages

Roxana Memetea (Managing Partner)
Roxana Țâmpău (Managing Director)
Simina Leotescu (Strategy Director)
Blanka Horvath (Account Director)
Ștefan Vasilachi (Executive Creative Director)  

Ada Gheorghiu – Group Account Director
Iulia Bivolaru – Account Manager
Stefania Bercu – Strategic Planner
Sebastian Luba – Head of Social Media
Vlad Iosipescu – Social Media Manager
Maria Man - Social Media Manager
Carina Toma - Group Creative Director
Victor Firan – Art Director
Dragos Aliciu – Senior Copywriter
Alexandra Aliman – Copywriter

Dana Constantin  - Digital Manager
Maria Ilie – Senior Media Manager
Irene Derasadurian – Media Manager
Razvan Meirosu – Media Director

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