Pepsi Max Ads – Sneak Peak For My Mates!

by Thomas MORADPOUR on January 12, 2011 · 14 comments

Is it OK for one in every twenty posts to be a shameless promotion? Anyway, that’s the one, so I hope it’s OK…

Here’s a sneak peak for my mates in #usguys and broader twitterville of the new 2011 Pepsi Max International campaign, which is about to hit the screens this week-end in Europe, starting in Denmark.

The films, created by CLM/BBDO and shot by director Bart Timmer, are all part of our ongoing Max It saga which started in ’09.

You may be interested to know that developing these ads involved a three months ethnographic research on 25 year old guys, across seven countries and five continents. And as you can expect from this particular demo, it takes exactly 10 words to articulate the learnings – they just want to spend more time with their mates.


Yes, the universal truth across the globe is that guys will go to any length, no matter how mischievous, to have more time to take it to the MAX with their buddies, getting out of those less-than-intense situations involving bosses, girlfriend shopping sprees and dinners with the in-laws… And Max is there to help along the way; providing the full-on cola kick, hit and rush but without the sugar to weigh you down.

So here’s to rescue missions, get-out-of-jail free cards and escape plans… here’s to grabbing life by the balls and maxing it with your mates!
Let me know what you think in comments; If you like… please share or RT!

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  • tom martin

    Outstanding!!! Cheers to your mates at CLM/BBDO. Well done… can’t help but laugh and like Pepsi Max… hope it grows sales too ;-) )


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  • Sean McGinnis

    They look great Tom. Very funny. Thought the last one was great! Hits right home for me…Congrats to you and the team.

    - @SeanMcGinnis

  • Patrick Prothe

    I’m with Sean – that last one nails it for me! And I guess your research also shows that guys are guys regardless of where they are in the world ;) Thanks for sharing . . .

  • Ken Rosen

    What strikes me about the first two is these are the first soda ads I’ve seen which seem to try to directly equate soda with beer in the viewer’s mind. I never thought about it before seeing these, but the tone of your past ads (and those of the other guys) have always shown imagery somehow differentiates them from beer ads. But in the first two in particular, that distinction is gone. Given the positioning your text below the ads tries to grab, I suppose this isn’t surprising–you really DO want this to be an alternative in high-energy “guy” situations. But it’s just interesting to see the wall broken down.

    Thanks for the early peek!


    • tommoradpour

      Ah! Ken, you see right through the strat ;-)

      • Ken Rosen

        It would have been fun to be a fly on the wall in those discussions.

        Ever since the days of Tab, it seems like diet cola has been gradually moving (and trying to move) from more female oriented to gender neutral. It was clear from the brand intro that Max was intended to push that. But the “how far can we push this” goal is fun to watch you explore. One thing is clear: this ad set pushes it further than the other guy’s ads are pushing….

        Cheers, Ken

  • Ian M Rountree

    Great stuff, Tom – and I’ll agree with Ken. Equating cola with beer is an interesting tactic. I’ve never been an ad guy, but I appreciate design – the feel of the bottle pictured at the top is quite striking. Really liking the feel of the labels against the dark bottle/can. Well done!

  • Cristian Gonzales

    Thanks for sharing this with us Tom and giving us a sneak peak.

    Fun commercials. I love a good beer commercial, and that’s exactly the kind of vibe I got from these ads. My favorite’s actually the first one, the last one creeps me out a bit ha ha.

    I do find it a bit strange, however, that the ads involved three months of ethnographic research across several countries and continents, yet, all of the guys in these ads are caucasian. Just an observation.

    Tweeting this out tomorrow!

  • Aaron

    The third one has the most edge (sinister clown) but they’re all rather tame. I imagine you tried with the second one to include a more dramatic and possibly horrific trick but the client toned it down?

    ‘Chopping’ the guy in half and scaring the bejesus out of the family would have had more comic impact but hey ho.

    This is turning into a really solid campaign but it’s not memorable. Sorry.

  • Mitch Neff

    These are GREAT, Tom!

    Ken made a great point on the beer item. When the guys hit the stadium in the first spot, the viewer is anticipating a beer in their hands. They all seem shot in a style that we normally equate with beer or liquor ads. The concept of guy-up-to-fun-hijinx has been in those ads for sometime. This is obviously intentional and it seems to work well and be unobtrusive to the overall execution. I am guessing that the point of that is to activate the excitement and lifestyle imagery that beer distributors have spent a lifetime instilling in this target demo?

    They are the kind of spots that every guy in the target demo will watch and imagine himself and his buddies in the hero roles. Effective at both brand promotion and effecting mind share in the target market. For those of us a few years removed from the mid-twenties target, these spots are grin-inducing in the “remember-that-time-that-we-…” kind of way.

    Great spots!

  • Anonymous

    Ok I’ll pitch in, though I’m not a guy which is your target demographic. I didn’t like the first one. It was too…corny? for me. The second one was better. I liked the third one as well. Although I must admit I’ve never seen guys dance like these guys do at the end of the ads.

  • Hugh Mitton

    that magician could have almost passed for Christian Bale in The Prestige

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