The Drum Awards Festival - Extended Deadline

-d -h -min -sec


By Webb Wright, NY Reporter

October 4, 2022 | 4 min read

The brand is looking to get TikTok dancing along with Chlöe’s modern take on Footloose as it reboots three limited-time-only soda flavors.

Pepsi is serving up a sip of nostalgia, blended with TikTok trendiness, in a new revival of its ‘Soda Shop’ product series. Three limited-edition flavors (Black Cherry, Cream Soda and the all-new Zero Sugar Cream Soda) are being released alongside a modern reimagining of the title track from the classic film Footloose. Pepsi-Cola Soda Shop Black Cherry and Cream Soda had only previously been available for a short time last year.

In both look and flavor, the Soda Shop flavors have been designed to capture the aesthetic from ‘soda shops,’ iconic American institutions that were prevalent in the mid-twentieth century but have since become much rarer (though not totally extinct).

Pepsi initially launched its Soda Shop series last year with a reinterpretation of You’re the One That I Want from the 1978 film Grease performed by Doja Cat. This time, it has tapped singer and actor Chlöe to star in a gen Z-ified and TikTok-ready production of Footloose, from the eponymous 1984 film.

Releasing its new music video shortly after a Footloose-inspired dancing trend made its rounds through TikTok (the film’s original star Kevin Bacon and his wife Kyra Sedgwick even joined in), Pepsi hopes to start an entirely new TikTok challenge, oriented around Chlöe’s rendition of the classic song.

Pepsi has been on a tear lately, dropping new limited-edition products at a rapid-fire rate. Just a couple of weeks ago, for example, the company unveiled a trio of new flavors in its ‘S’mores Collection’; this arrived on the heels of a number of other flavor innovations from recent months, including a limited-edition maple syrup-flavor cola, which it crafted in partnership with restaurant chain IHOP. In January, it sought to capitalize on a 90s nostalgia trend that’s recently been washing over certain parts of American culture by launching a re-release of Pepsi Crystal, an iconic transparent cola that was first introduced in 1992.

Powered by AI

Explore frequently asked questions

​​“We aspire to be a lifestyle brand. It’s really about how the brand is top of mind, how it connects with people emotionally, not just rationally and [with the] taste,” said Todd Kaplan, Pepsi’s chief marketer. “We’ve come up with some really phenomenal flavors that we tie to culturally-relevant areas or insights to drive discussion and chatter around our brand and our category that overall keeps us more top of mind ... We’ve tried to really stay current and make sure we continue to have a pulse on culture and what’s going on to continue to put ourselves out there.”

Pepsi’s decision to lean into nostalgia is in part an effort to add a little sunshine into the daily lives of its customers, which have recently been significantly overshadowed by bad news both at home and abroad, said Kaplan. “In times of cultural stress ... people look for things that are comfortable and familiar. That’s where brands come in.”

For more, sign up for The Drum’s daily US newsletter here.

Celebrity Endorsement Brand Strategy TikTok

More from Celebrity Endorsement

View all