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Posts Tagged ‘Gatorade’

Petition Asks Coke to Follow Pepsi, Remove Chemical from Powerade

Powerade Coca-ColaWe’ve talked a lot recently about the PR wars over food labeling, but what happens when labels already offer complete transparency and customers don’t like what they see?

Aveyca Price of Georgia recently noticed that her bottle of Powerade contained brominated vegetable oil, a synthetic chemical used to prevent separation in soft drinks that, if consumed in high amounts over a long period of time, can build up in the body and cause serious toxic effects. Oh, and it’s also a flame retardant.

Surprised and concerned that her sports drink contained a chemical so controversial it has been banned in over 100 countries, Price decided to take action.

Because an online petition that received over 200,000 signatures recently helped prompt Pepsico to phase out BVO from its Gatorade sports drinks (although it’s still present in Mountain Dew), Price created a similar petition on Change.org asking Coca-Cola, makers of Powerade, to do the same. Within its first month, Price’s campaign gained over fifty thousand supporters. “Fifty thousand people (signing) within a month is amazing. I’m surprised and I’m glad I have that many people backing me up,” she said.

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Mediabistro Job Fair

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Public Relations After a Tragedy

With every disaster comes opportunity. Last week Hurricane Sandy brought disaster, tragedy and heartache–along with the opportunity to help others while displaying compassion and courage. When people are in need, most feel that others should do something if capable. This applies not just to human beings and communities but also to brands and companies.

People always remember their times of struggle and grief–especially the people (or corporations) that helped them or exploited them.   From a public relations standpoint, Walmart and Pepsi have handled this particular crisis well by donating supplies that range from cleaning supplies, cereal and board games to snacks, breakfast bars and soda. Check out a full list of their donations.

Savvy public relations experts know that implementing a corporate response to disasters requires a deft touch so that efforts are seen as being helpful and sincere rather than opportunistic or exploitative. When the victims of Hurricane Sandy were suddenly and violently rendered without food, comfort or shelter, the fact that they received a Gatorade from Pepsi or disinfectant wipes from Walmart could create a strong bond with both the products and brand.

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Ryan Lochte and Reality TV: A Perfect Match?

Sorry, no chocolate insideTake a moment this morning to imagine that you’re Ryan Lochte: You’ve just won two gold medals, two silvers and a bronze. You’ve appeared on the covers of Vogue, Time, and Men’s Journal. Most importantly, you’ve managed to defeat your arch nemesis and teammate Michael Phelps to reign atop the ranks of chlorine-tinged supermen for one brief, shining moment.

Now that you’ve made your mark on the world of sport, earned your 15 minutes as an international “brand” and made your requisite appearance in the British tabloids, the time has come for you to answer the question that vexes a nation:

The Bachelor” or “Dancing with the Stars?”

How about both? The world of reality TV is calling, and this morning good sir Lochte told Matt Lauer that he is “looking towards” it. After scoring endorsement deals with Gillette, Speedo, Gatorade and Ralph Lauren, the 6’2″ fish has let the world know that he’s ready to leave the water — or at least to trade the Olympic pool for the Pacific Ocean.

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Menu Items, Food Package Labeling Add Variety

Domino’s has announced that it will be offering pizzas with gluten-free crusts, adding to the list of companies that are featuring these specialty products on their menu. The gluten-free-eating population is a $6.2 billion market and between six and eight percent of U.S. consumers are on a gluten-free diet.

Celiac.com is warning, however, that these pizzas are for people with celiac sensitivities, not for those with full-on celiac disease. That’s lame.

Companies like Frito-Lay and Anheusher-Busch, which has introduced gluten-free Michelob Ultra Light Cider, have also jumped on this culinary bandwagon. Chuck E. Cheese has added gluten-free pizza and chocolate cake to its menu.

Selling gluten-free products is just one way to add a special something to the menu these days.

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A Look at PepsiCo’s Mission Control

In an Advertising Week presentation earlier this week, PepsiCo‘s Bonin Bough mentioned “Mission Control,” a social media monitoring and engagement program for the company’s Gatorade brand. Ad Age took a tour of the Mission Control center and interviewed Carla Hassan, senior director of consumer engagement for a video currently available on the magazine’s website.

According to Ad Age, “The team has had more than 2,000 one-on-one conversations with consumers, while the brand’s likes on Facebook have skyrocketed to 1.2 million, reaching the 1 million milestone a full five months ahead of schedule.” Among the agency partners helping with Mission Control is Fleishman-Hillard.

Some of the insights gleaned are simple ones. For instance, Hassan says one of the first things the company learned was that customers were having a hard time finding the product. As a result, a product locator was created.