Pepsi runs ad thanking Coke

Not content to let sleeping dogs lie, Pepsi-Cola Canada has taken a jab at rival Coca-Cola over that company's recent TV spot spoofing Pepsi's long-running Taste Patrol campaign.The July issue of Canadian Grocer carries a sarcastic Pepsi ad thanking Coke for...

Not content to let sleeping dogs lie, Pepsi-Cola Canada has taken a jab at rival Coca-Cola over that company’s recent TV spot spoofing Pepsi’s long-running Taste Patrol campaign.

The July issue of Canadian Grocer carries a sarcastic Pepsi ad thanking Coke for acknowledging the ‘success of our Taste Patrol advertising and marketing program.’

Canadian Grocer is a monthly trade magazine covering the food and beverage industry.

Among other things, the Pepsi ad suggests Coke ran the tv spot out of concern that it has been losing the cola wars.

The ad reads in part:

‘Sorry, guys.

‘As you’re well aware, according to Canada’s largest retail audit firm, Pepsi is the #1 selling brand in the country.’

‘Ouch.’

Pepsi’s decision to run the Canadian Grocer ad caught Coke by surprise, since Coke thought the issue had died away at the end of June when it pulled the spoof spot off the air.

But it seems Coke might have underestimated just how jealously Pepsi is prepared to guard its preferred taste positioning.

Shortly after the tv spot began running last May, Pepsi asked the Advertising Standards Council of the Canadian Advertising Foundation in Toronto to pressure Coke to kill the commercial.

Steve Davis, vice-president of marketing and national sales for Pepsi, says he lodged the complaint because the Coke spot, which claims ‘more people drink Coca-Cola than any other cola,’ was undermining ‘Pepsi’s fact-based message’ that people in taste tests are more likely to prefer Pepsi than Coke.

For his part, Dave Sanderson, vice-president of marketing for Coke, says he finds the Canadian Grocer ad amusing.

Says Sanderson: ‘I can’t understand why they bother. While they’re having a meeting for this sort of thing, we’re out there stealing their customers.’