Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Cbs Tells Sodastream to Revise Brand-Bashing Super Bowl Essay

Every year, the Super Bowl attracts some of the best and most high-priced advertising in the world. But it also lures a horde of publicity-seekers claiming their commercials have been censored or rejected by the host network. In nearly all cases, the complaining marketers never really had a shot at the Super Bowl, thanks to shoddy production values, truly objectionable content and, more often than not, the inability to pony up more than $3 million for an ad. And it’s a common occurrence for the network to ask event sponsors to tweak or edit the content for a variety of reasons (which also can yield a PR bonanza if a sponsor cries foul — just ask serial offender GoDaddy.com). But SodaStream, a mainstream advertiser that some time ago purchased a spot in the game’s fourth quarter, said this wasn’t a PR gambit. So what’s the issue? The content of its planned commercial seemed to have concerned CBS because it was a direct hit at two other Super Bowl spo nsors and heavy network TV advertisers: Coke and Pepsi SodaStream, which sells home soda-making machines, has already run afoul of authorities in the U.K. for a Bogusky-crafted spot indicating its product is more environmentally friendly than established sodas; the spot shows branded bottles and cans of soft drinks exploding into thin air. For the Super Bowl, it hoped to up the ante with a spot depicting truck drivers clad in clothing with Coca-Cola and Pepsi marks on them, according to Ilan Nacasch, SodaStream’s chief marketing officer. â€Å"We really tried to comply with the standards† set by CBS, he said. At the same time, he added, â€Å"We were taking it to a new level, and that’s the level where they apparently judged to be going too far.† Interestingly enough, Pepsi has scored big points with viewers over the years by showing Super Bowl ads with Coke deliverymen abandoning their employer wholesale for a sip of a Pepsi drink. Of course, Pepsi (and, for that matter, Coke) buys multiple ads in the Super Bowl each year, as well as spends millions of dollars on other broadcast-TV advertising. Another Super Bowl sponsor, Anheuser-Busch InBev with Pepsi this year for in-store displays and promotions. A CBS spokeswoman said network executives declined to comment. â€Å"Bummed,† Mr. Bogusky, famous for his work at CP&B still in the game with an older spot we tweaked.†

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