Pepsi activates experiential dance pods at Hersheypark

Dive Brief:

Pepsi is opening a music-focused, experiential area inside Hersheypark, an amusement park in Pennsylvania, per a press launch. Pepsi Pop Star opens at this time (July 30) and was created with design company Jam3.
The 2,500-square-foot area options dance pods the place followers can document quick music movies that can be matched to personalised digital avatars. The area has an attire retailer and Pepsi cooler stocked with merchandise, and is free to company however requires a reservation.
The experiential Pepsi Pop Star hyperlinks a number of pre-pandemic advertising and marketing methods whereas increasing the soda model’s ties to fashionable music. It’s additionally the newest effort by guardian firm PepsiCo to experiment with nontraditional advertising and marketing activations.

Dive Insight:
Pepsi’s newest marketing campaign builds on its musical heritage and combines a number of pre-pandemic ways to drive fan engagement at a preferred amusement park. Since 2013, the soda model has been the official sponsor of the Super Bowl Halftime Show and has partnered with a spread of fashionable musicians by extra campaigns. This newest effort sees Pepsi hoping to additional set up its musical connection amongst shoppers.
In a revival of experiential advertising and marketing, Pepsi is providing dance pods during which followers can document their performances {of professional} routines matched to hit songs by artists together with Kane Brown, The Killers and Imagine Dragons. The routines can be carried out on a display screen by digital avatars that followers can personalize through selfie after which mannequin their strikes after. As individuals return to many pre-pandemic actions, different manufacturers are reemploying their very own experiential efforts, reminiscent of Corona’s voice-activated merchandising machine and Wendy’s “Rick and Morty”-themed diner.
A contest ingredient ascribes scores to the performances and can enable the fan with the best rating to take residence their 15-second music video. Winners are inspired to share their performances on social channels with hashtags like #PepsiPopStar and #HersheyparkComfortable, which may prolong the marketing campaign’s attain.
The providing of branded merchandise is one other pre-pandemic technique at play, which has additionally been tapped just lately by manufacturers like Pizza Hut and McDonald’s. Pepsi’s attire retailer is designed to emulate a live performance expertise and marks the primary time the soda model has launched licensed gear with a accomplice, per the discharge.
While Pepsi’s marketing campaign revives experiential parts which have been largely out of fee because the pandemic’s onset, the activations look totally different than they used to, indicating the potential methods during which the channel could change going ahead. Dance rooms, for instance, are a contactless expertise and segmented into non-public pods to restrict interplay between separate teams. The pods additionally use personalised avatar tech, which grew in recognition through the pandemic and will proceed for use by entrepreneurs given how videoconferencing is anticipated to stay round.
Pepsi is betting on a resurgence in amusement park attendance to gasoline its marketing campaign. Before the pandemic, Hersheypark was one of the heavily-attended amusement parks within the U.S., having seen just below 3.4 million guests in 2019. Pepsi may doubtlessly faucet into this pool with its immersive expertise. But regardless of an increase in vaccination charges and renewed curiosity in theme parks, the mounting risk of the COVID-19 delta variant may thwart engagement.
With Pepsi Pop Star, guardian firm PepsiCo is increasing its experimental efforts to maintain tempo with societal traits. When advertising and marketing was nonetheless largely digital, the corporate launched a digital restaurant for meals and beverage supply. The meals and beverage behemoth additionally has a enterprise arm, PepsiCo Labs, devoted to discovering startups that assist inform its non-traditional promoting.

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