Crystal Pepsi Promotional Print
|Country of origin||United States|
|Variants||Diet Crystal Pepsi, Pepsi Clear|
|Related products||Pepsi Blue, Tab Clear|
In the early 1990s, a marketing fad equating clarity with purity began with the remake of Ivory soap from its classic milky solution; the idea spread to many companies, including PepsiCo. Crystal Pepsi was marketed as a caffeine-free "clear alternative" to normal colas, equating clearness with purity and health. Its marketing slogan was "You've never seen a taste like this".
In 1992, PepsiCo introduced Crystal Pepsi to test markets in Denver, Sacramento, Dallas, and Providence, and the product generated a positive response. Pleased with the results, PepsiCo launched the cola on April 12, 1992, and began to sell it nationwide in 1993. A large marketing campaign was launched, for which the company invented the world's first photo-realistic, computer-generated bus wrap printing. A series of television advertisements featuring Van Halen's hit song "Right Now" premiered on national television on January 31, 1993, during Super Bowl XXVII. Another marketing ploy was to give out full sized sample bottles with the Sunday paper deliveries such as the Boston Globe in Massachusetts. In its first year, Crystal Pepsi captured a full percentage point of U.S. soft drink sales, approximately $474 million. Coca-Cola followed suit by launching Tab Clear on December 14, 1992.
Initial sales were good but quickly fell.[better source needed] Pepsi pulled the drink off the market and returned several months later with a reformulated citrus drink titled "Crystal From Pepsi", but this was short-lived as well.
It was a tremendous learning experience. I still think it's the best idea I ever had, and the worst executed. A lot of times as a leader you think, "They don't get it; they don't see my vision." People were saying we should stop and address some issues along the way, and they were right. It would have been nice if I'd made sure the product tasted good. Once you have a great idea and you blow it, you don't get a chance to resurrect it.
- Garber Jr, Lawrence L. Color as a Tool for Visual Persuasion, p313. Essay included in Persuasive Imagery ed. by Linda M Scott. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 2003. ISBN 0-8058-4202-0
- Zyman, Sergio. The End of Marketing as We Know It. Harper-Collins, 1999. ISBN 0-88730-983-6
- Business Digest and Bloomington, Illinois. The Washington Post, April 14, 1992
- "Business Digest". New York Times, April 13, 1992
- Janofsky, Michael. "Pepsi Tries New Diet Cola Abroad". New York Times, 2 March 1993.
- Bryant, Adam. "Coke Adds a Clear Cola To Its New Age Stable". New York Times, December 15, 1992
- Simonson, Itamar. Will I Like a Medium Pillow? Another Look at Constructed and Inherent Preferences, p18 (Research Paper 1977-R1). Stanford University Graduate School of Business, 2007
- Brody, Aaron L and John B Lord. Developing New Foods for a Changing Marketplace, p62. CRC Press, 2000. ISBN 1-56676-778-4
- "Is Pepsi Clear the return of Crystal Pepsi?". BevReview.com. Retrieved 8-11-09.
- Kate Bonamici Flaim, Winging It, 19 Dec. 2007, Fast Company (magazine) at http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/119/winging-it.html accessed 29 Sept. 2009
- PepsiClear Official Website (Spanish)