Pepsi Poised to Launch "Yoda" Promotion Online

  |  March 25, 2005   |  Comments

Campaign features a sweepstakes with e-mail, phone, and SMS components, followed by a new Diet Pepsi TV spot.

Pepsi-Cola North America is gearing up to launch an online promotional sweepstakes in anticipation of the release of "Star Wars: Episode III Revenge of the Sith," due out in theaters May 19.

The "Call Upon Yoda" sweepstakes, which starts on April 18, features the enigmatic, multi-centenarian Jedi master, offering Pepsi drinkers one of three ways to interact with the character and potentially win $100,000, among other prizes. The promotion is a manifestation of Pepsi's longtime relationship with the "Star Wars" franchise.

Buyers of 12- or 24-packs of Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Caffeine Free Diet Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Diet Mountain Dew, and Sierra Mist will find a code featured in the packaging. Participants begin by registering at the sweepstakes Web site. It hasn't yet been launched, but will include interactive "Jedi Training" games and an "Intergalactic Translator." Once registered, users can enter their product codes via phone, online, or text messaging.

If participants hear back from Yoda through one of these media, they will be informed which prize they may have won. Those who are not winners will receive a message from either Darth Vader or C3PO and R2D2, encouraging them to try again.

"Revenge of the Sith is already the most talked-about movie of the year, and Yoda is one of the most beloved movie characters of all time, so we're very excited that he is the cornerstone of our promotion and our new Diet Pepsi commercial," said Dave Burkick, SVP and chief marketing officer of Pepsi-Cola North America.

In addition to ten cash bounties of $100,000, other prizes will include "Star Wars" toys, games from Hasbro and Lego, and two-liter bottles of Pepsi Lime.

Offline components to the campaign include a new Diet Pepsi commercial called "Jedi Mind Trick," which will begin airing in May. The spot was created by BBDO New York. Pepsi has also partnered with 7-Eleven to offer "Darth Dew Slurpees" and four 3-D cups at participating stores.

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