Controversial ad yields unexpected results
Pepsi took down a Kendall Jenner ad focused upon bringing unity to young political protesters shortly after its release because of the negative backlash. Even though no one else is defending Pepsi in their efforts to publish a successful commercial, in a way, I am.
In their statement, representatives of the company said, “Pepsi was trying to project a global message of unity, peace and understanding. Clearly, we missed the mark and apologize.”
Did they miss the mark? It may seem that way because of media’s response, but I don’t think they did. Let’s break it down.Unity
The commercial pictures many different ethnicities, genders and religions represented in the protestor group, including a photographer who appears to be a Muslim based on her head covering. They all came together to protest, as some type of world peace movement. Even if critics don’t think it represents unity, the backlash against the commercial actually has the potential to bring people closer together.
Everyone agreeing instead of arguing about other political issues makes them, in a sense, united. I realize this is not the intended effect Pepsi was hoping to achieve, but their commercial united the viewers in a common dislike. Although it wasn’t Pepsi’s best publicity, it still has everyone talking about them, regardless of their political views, ethnicity or gender. Peace and Understanding Perhaps Kendall Jenner’s act of giving a Pepsi to the police officer in this commercial was a reference the Black Lives Matter movement. I think Pepsi’s main point was to show that we are all people. Police officers are just doing their job. They get assigned to protests and things of that nature, but they rarely choose to be there. Getting offended because a protester would offer a cold beverage to a hard-working citizen is a bit silly. Pepsi just wanted to show that, while we all may hold different views, we are still people and should be treated equally and with respect.
Many people who were bashing the commercial on Twitter were saying things like, “Giving someone a Pepsi doesn’t solve any problem” or, “If only someone gave Hitler a Pepsi.” The point of giving the cop a Pepsi was not to just say all problems will be solved; it was a kind gesture to show that we are all people and, at the end of the day, enjoying a cold beverage really takes the edge off.
Last but not least, Kendall Jenner. Do I even need to say why she was in this commercial? Why wouldn’t Pepsi want a reality star and model with a huge following like her to promote their product?
Pepsi’s commercial didn’t miss the mark. They just made their message too broad so the viewers only saw the surface of the ad at a glance, not the deeper meaning.
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