Pepsi turns to King of Pop in ads push
Pepsi has announced a deal with Michael Jackson’s estate to use his image in a new global advertising campaign.
The promotion will include a TV ad, special edition cans bearing the pop superstar’s image and chances to download remixes of some of Jackson’s most famous songs.
Pepsi, which first partnered with Jackson in 1983, did not disclose the terms of its deal.
The promotion is part of a global marketing blitz as Pepsi looks to revive its brand and win back market share from Coca-Cola.
In 2010, Pepsi was knocked out of the No. 2 spot among sodas in the US by Diet Coke, with Coke remaining in the No. 1 position, according to the industry tracker Beverage Digest.
Consumers in the US and China will be the first to get a taste of the Jackson campaign in coming weeks, which is timed to coincide with the 25th anniversary of Bad, the singer’s multi-platinum album.
Although Pepsi is banking on the nostalgia Jackson can evoke, the partnership also resurrects painful memories.
In 1984, Jackson’s hair famously caught fire while filming a commercial for Pepsi in Los Angeles.
A spark from a pyrotechnics display landed on the singer’s head. Jackson suffered severe burns and many trace his addiction to painkillers to the incident. Pepsi gave Jackson $1.5 million (€1.1 million) asa result.