PepsiCo is the world’s leading snack food marketer. Most of its sales come from North and South America, where it has traditionally been a strong competitor. 19 of the brands that PepsiCo owns are already multi- billion dollar businesses. Brands such as Pepsi-Cola, Diet Pepsi, and Mountain Dew; Lay’s, Doritos, and Tostitos chips; Lipton Teas; Tropicana fruit drinks; Gatorade sports drinks; Quaker foods; and Aquafina bottled water.
PepsiCo has noticed the sharply higher use of digital media among teenagers and young adults, a large and lucrative target market for snacks and beverages. As a result, it has stepped up the use of the internet and social networking sites, such as Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube to communicate with and influence its customers. A campaign it is running called “Dewmocracy” invits customers to vote online for their favorite new Mountain Dew flavors. It also runs contests asking customers to create a homemade commercial for Doritos, if they won they would win a cash prize, and their commercial would be aired during the Superbowl commericals.
One global trend that PepsiCo’s marketers have identified as a force in the marketing strategy of the company is increased interest in healthier eating. Several years ago, the UK government started a campaign warning consumers of the dangers of high salt intake and urged them to change their diets. To better its marketing strategy, PepsiCo decided to make its products healthier by slashing the amount of sodium in its Walkers brand of snack foods (popular in the UK) by 25%. A few years later, US health experts were also calling for lower salt contents in processed foods, so PepsiCo lowered the salt content in its products worldwide. It’s also lightening up on fats and sugars and making nutrition labels more prominent on its products so that consumers can make more educated choices. Certain foods...