Tag Archives: marketing

Live a Refresh Challenge

Last month I got the chance to get involved with a Pepsi Refresh cause to raise money for a great cause, the International Rett Syndrome Foundation. The prize is $500k–between the $250,000-level funding from Pepsi Refresh and a matching grant from The Pioneer Foundation–just for tweeting and texting. We came in third in a race that changed hands several times on the last day of voting and in which only the top two vote earners win funding. Through the process of supporting this cause I earned an intimate view of the idea, mechanism and vision of Pepsi Refresh. We’re in the running again this month, leading the voting so far. I’ll share some impressions below and invite you to get familiar with the program as the new rules of marketing require every brand to have some form of Social Mission in its brand expression. Pepsi Refresh is the gold-standard expression.

Clear Call To Action

Please get familiar with the Pepsi Refresh project by signing up today now. You can login with your Facebook account or create an account using email. Go ahead. We’ll wait. When you are done voting, please return and post your action and any impressions in the comments below. See instructions below for voting daily as well as sample tweets you can use to promote this to your network.

To get the full impact of this program, go beyond voting to promoting. When you do this you’ll see an emotional connection that happens in the process of helping out a worthy cause. More than the brand impressions enhancing their Share Of Voice in SocialMedia, I believe Pepsico is benefiting from the positive brand transference of this emotional association and connection.

About Pepsi Refresh

Pepsi Refresh got famous as news outlets picked up on Pepsico’s decision to skip a Super Bowl ad for 2010. Media reports implied Pepsi used the marketing dollars to fund the Refresh Everything initiative instead. Moving funds from TV to SocialMedia was unheard of and considered bold, visionary and as with any marketing innovation, was also met with some skepticism. Nine months, 160 funded ideas and nearly $7 million in charitable grants later the evidence is falling on the side of vision over skepticism. Pepsico has announced plans to roll out Refresh Everything globally and support the program in the US for at least another year. In a recap post for this challenge I’ll share more of the mechanics and an interview with Pepsico’s Bonin Bough about the program.

About IRSF:

The International Retts Syndrome Foundation funds research to cure this tragic disease which strikes 15-months to 12 years old girls to various degrees with autistic-spectrum afflictions. As it progresses girls lose speech, motor control and eventually can not live unassisted. The amazing thing about IRSF is that their efforts in funding medical research has actually produced to my knowledge the first –identified marker at the chromosome level which advances this from the “needle in the haystack” research activity to a focused drive to a cure. Breakthroughs for IRSF will also likely open doors more broadly for the treatment of neurological diseases.

On a personal note: Christian McMahan and John Corpus are two friends with daughters the same age as mine. Each as wonderful, both with Retts. We need a cure.

Small acts, Short time, Big deal:
We can make a big difference by getting our networks to vote for the IRSF cause on the Pepsi Refresh Everything program. The prize from Pepsi is $250k and IRSF has secured an additional $250k in matching grant from The Pioneer Foundation. So, you have the ability to raise $500k for this cause just by doing what we do.

There are a lot of worthy and motivated causes gunning for the two top $250k spots. We don’t take any of their resourcefulness or networks for granted. We need help getting people to do two things:

  1. Go to http://www.refresheverything.com/rettresearchtoreality and vote every day for our cause between now and September 30
  2. Text 100842 to Pepsi (73774) on any mobile device; standard text messaging rates apply


We’re confident with your support we can maintain our top spot (see http://www.refresheverything.com/leaderboard) and win the prize.

Here are a couple of potential tweets for you to use in promoting:

  • Join me in finding a CURE for 1000’s of girls w/Rett Syndrome by voting now! http://pep.si/4irsf & txt 100842 to 73774. pls rt!
  • Vote IRSF @Pepsico Refresh daily to 9/30 we can win $500k w/matching grants! http://pep.si/4irsf & txt 100842 to 73774. pls rt!
  • Vote to cure Retts @Pepsico Refresh now & daily to 9/30-we may win $500k for a cure! http://pep.si/4irsf & txt 100842 to 73774. pls rt!

Empathy can save us, Jeremy Rifkin presentation

In our practice we use Digital Ethnography to generate consumer-connected insights that power our ideation for marketing programs that dramatize the greatest truths for our clients and their brands. We bake our ethnographic discoveries and quantitative research into consumer segments, profiles or personas depending on how they will be applied. Ultimately these activities serve to create greater empathy to the needs and motivations of consumers so we serve our marketing objectives and unlock business growth. That’s how we employ empathy at Real Branding.

So, it was validating and humbling to watch Jeremy Rifkin’s presentation below, which was delivered at the Royal Society of the Arts on March 15, 2010. If introductions are in order, Mr. Rifkin is a prolific author, global advisor and has been a senior lecturer at the Wharton School’s Executive Education Program at the University of Pennsylvania since 1994.

  • Validating were the benefits derived for strategists, writers, designers, developers and marketers: empathy triggers somethings–mirror neurons specifically–in our brains to connect with others in a way that they are an extension of us. Like family, not consumers.
  • Humbling was the realization that our application, while great for our practice, is essential to us achieving a unifying vision for our one-race and one-planet in this lifetime to create real change

Enjoy this fascinating, 10-minute representation of his talk at the RSA animated through illustration.

You can also watch the longer, 55-minute version:

And you can find spirited commentary debating the quality of Jeremy’s sources of information on TED’s Best of the Web post.