Pepsi to Focus on Halftime Show & Activations During Super Bowl

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Pepsi is focusing its Super Bowl strategy on creating a memorable Halftime show and supporting local communities and small businesses in Tampa, a move aimed to inspire audiences and to help rebuild after almost a year of pandemic and economic hardship.Pepsi hopes to use this stage to tell a story of optimism and hope to social distanced fans in the stadium, as well as the millions of people who will be watching around the globe.


Pepsi is focusing its Super Bowl strategy on creating a memorable Halftime show and supporting local communities and small businesses in Tampa, a move aimed to inspire audiences and to help rebuild after almost a year of pandemic and economic hardship.

Pepsi hopes to use this stage to tell a story of optimism and hope to social distanced fans in the stadium, as well as the millions of people who will be watching around the globe.

“Pepsi is going all-in on the Super Bowl LV Halftime Show - elevating the moment with its first Super Bowl Halftime Show TV spot featuring headlining artist The Weeknd,” said Derek Lewis, President, South Division, PepsiCo Beverages North America. “The spot debuted during the NFL Super Wild Card games this past weekend and will continue to air throughout the NFL Playoffs and on PepsiHalftime.com - a digital fan portal providing custom AR filters, an in-depth behind-the-scenes look at this year's Pepsi Super Bowl Halftime Show and more.”

The brand is in its tenth year sponsoring the Halftime entertainment at the NFL game. The Weeknd will perform for audiences this year, a highly anticipated event after almost a year without live concerts. Pepsi has been trying to entertain audiences ever since the lockdown began, sponsoring one of the first virtual concerts last spring at an event starting Lady Gaga, Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder, Billie Eilish and Lizzo, among others. The WHO/Global Citizen event served as a blueprint for creating entertaining live events online.

With their focus on the Halftime show, Pepsi is holding off on running a spot for its core Pepsi product during the Super Bowl (though brands including Mountain Dew will have commercials). Instead, the company is working on a digital activation in and around the stadium in Tampa in a move to promote its Stronger Together brand platform which launched last year.  The campaign has celebrated essential workers during the pandemic, by sharing the stories of local heroes.

“As the world changes around us, it’s now more important than ever to stand up for issues that matter to people - that also includes brands,” Lewis said. “Pepsi Stronger Together is a series of grassroots initiatives that provide support to communities across the nation. For the Super Bowl iteration, Pepsi is working with community leaders and organizations to support initiatives based on community and the environment – key pillars of Pepsi Stronger Together.

The local activations target both NFL fans, as well as small businesses throughout Florida. Pepsi is partnering with DoorDash to encourage fans to order from local restaurants, which have been hard hit during lockdowns. To promote this effort, the companies are offering free delivery on DoorDash orders that include a Pepsi product across the state of Florida. They are also running a sweepstakes for a year’s worth of free DoorDash. Pepsi drones will also deliver VIP swag and merch to local fans before game day.

Pepsi Stronger Together is also donating $100,000 to the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) to help struggling restaurants in the region. Additionally they are giving out $10,000 grants to Tampa restaurants through the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association (FRLA) with the winners being revealed during Shaquille O'Neal’s “Shaq Bowl” restaurant challenge on Super Bowl Sunday.

“With Pepsi Stronger Together, we're bringing tailored resources to cities around the country by working with sports organizations like the NFL, NBA, local law enforcement, and charities, to bring people closer and encourage positive change. So far, we've activated in Orlando, Memphis, Louisville, Nashville, Washington, D.C., Miami, and now, Tampa and surrounding communities, and reception has been fantastic. We are getting ready to roll out a full year of rich programming across the country.”

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