Pepsi Ads Satisfy Listeners with Local Flavor

Welcome to Studio Resonate Showcase. Lifts in brand favorability and purchase intent that exceeded benchmarks—that's how we prove campaigns are better with audio!

Pop, fizz, ahhh. Summer is here, and that can mean different things, depending on where you are. For some it’s sunny days spent by the pool as hot dogs sizzle on the grill, for others it’s stopping at a food truck for tacos on the way to a ball game, and for others it’s enjoying the great outdoors with the BBQ fired up—topping it all off by cracking open an ice-cold Pepsi. 

When you’re looking for ways to connect with local consumers through audio and transport listeners to a specific moment or feeling, look no further than Studio Resonate, our audio creative agency. We teamed up with Pepsi to create a localized campaign, highlighting just how good the favorite foods in cities like New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles can be when paired with a famously refreshing soda.

Creating a Campaign That’s Big on Flavor

We have had a long standing relationship with Pepsico, but advertising for its most iconic beverage was uncharted territory for us—until now. Matt Mohun, the Director of Creative Strategy at Studio Resonate, saw the opportunity to turn the brand’s quirky TV ads into audio gold.

“One of the things I think we do really well is take a strong visual idea or campaign and find a way to adapt that to be the best it can be in audio. Pepsi's video spot was fantastic, but it was heavily rooted in the visualization of both Pepsi and food. 

“We wanted to take the tone and theme of their video campaign, but lean into audio with the personalization of regional cuisine and voices. So even though listeners couldn't see the hot dogs or the Pepsi, they would still be able to picture them because the messaging was personal and relevant to the individual that was hearing it.” - Matt Mohun, Director, Creative Strategy

Pepsi gave us a shot: one day to prove that campaigns are better with audio. Luckily, that’s all we needed. Our team got together to cook up something bold, surprising, and fun while leveraging the video campaign’s comedic premise of how far people will go to pair their favorite food with Pepsi. 

Seeing an opportunity to really flex the power of audio, the team incorporated geo-targeting into their creative expertise to pitch the idea of creating localized ads to highlight specific food pairings to targeted audiences. The idea was to create a delicious space that feels like home to listeners across the country with the power of audio. In total, we created 10 audio spots that were all unique to each city. We’re including five spots here to give you a taste.   

Dallas: BBQ
Dallas BBQ

Creating a pitch with our unique approach to audio and extensive campaign ideas won Pepsi over. Once we got the green light, the real work began. 

A Toast To Your Favorite Pair

Pepsi provided the best food pairings for 10 different cities, and we were off to the races! After some brainstorming and collaboration, the team landed on a toast-like speech that pays tribute to each city's most iconic food. Veronica Kwiatkowski, Senior Copywriter at Studio Resonate, took the toasts to the next level by adding puns and jokes to incorporate the wacky vibes of the TV ads. 

“I knew they were on board for something a little out-there that showed people's die-hard obsession for Pepsi, so I thought, ‘Why not have a character literally professing his love for Pepsi itself.’ After I had the base of the 10 toast scripts, I went in and added food-specific puns in the intro for each market, like ‘babycakes’ for crabcakes in DC, and ‘I hope this doesn't sound cheesy’ for cheesesteaks in Philly. I felt this was a fun way to tease listeners with the reveal at the end that the toast is, in fact, being delivered to food” - Veronica Kwiatkowski, Senior Copywriter

DC: Crab Cakes
DC Crab Cakes
Philadelphia: Cheesesteak
Philly Cheesesteak

Better Together with Audio

To cut through the clutter of the multitude of ads consumers see and hear each day, the team created intimate audio experiences for Pepsi to truly resonate with listeners. The ads bring fresh, fun scenarios to life for listeners, creating an experience that feels real to each audience.

Senior Audio Producer, Ricky Ramirez Hernandez, worked with Veronica on the massive task of casting talent for 10 unique ads to resonate with each local audience while staying conscious to avoid cliches and stereotypes. They selected 22 voice actors who were born and raised in their respective regions to accurately capture the accents and dialects of each city.

A lot of thought goes into audio production. From voices to sound effects to the music, each spot must be carefully tailored in order to create ads that feel real to audiences. Ricky carefully designed sound to emulate the real crunches and slurps people hear when digging into a tasty meal. And to make our audio campaign feel cohesive to Pepsico’s video ads, he chose music beds with the same feel while incorporating our new twist. 

“Since each city had its own food pairing, I made sure to adapt each spot’s food bite SFX to its corresponding texture. Getting these details right was important because the audience for each ad variation knows the food intimately. For example, the empanada spot has a bright crunch that I’m very familiar with because I grew up eating a lot of those in Venezuela. In contrast, the chowder spot has more of a slurp SFX that makes the most sense for that dish.” - Ricky Ramirez Hernandez, Senior Audio Producer

LA: Tacos
LA Tacos
Miami: Empanadas
Miami Empanadas

Sipping on Success

The campaign was wildly successful. Listeners loved the authentic, quirky spin our team created—which resulted in lifts in brand favorability and purchase intent that exceeded benchmarks. With Studio Resonate, Pepsico was able to launch an audio campaign that was both authentic and enticing to listeners. And now that we’ve successfully proven that campaigns are better with audio, we can’t wait to see what’s next with Pepsi. 

Ready to level up your campaigns with our audio expertise? Let’s chat. 

Campaign Credits

Director, Creative Strategy: Matt Mohun

Creative Director: Ryan Wardell

Senior Copywriter: Veronica Kwiatkowski

Senior Audio Producer: Ricky Ramirez Hernandez 

Project Manager: Marnie Peterson

Production Coordinator: Brandon Edingburg

Thank you to our partners at PepsiCo and OMD