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PepsiCo Hosts an Integrated Marketing “Dance Off” To Promote Healthy Living

Leading international food, snack, and beverage company PepsiCo has existed for over a century. The “Dance Off” campaign, which the corporation created in 2010 to encourage healthy living and fight kid obesity, was one of its most effective public relations initiatives. This campaign illustrates proactive public relations and shows how integrated marketing can help a business establish a solid reputation.

The Situation

A worldwide marketing initiative by PepsiCo was launched in 2010 and was built around an online “Dance Off” contest. The tournament’s goal was to promote physical exercise among individuals of all ages, concentrating on kids and teens. Coca-Cola, which had started a comparable campaign at the same time as PepsiCo, presented fierce competition. Nevertheless, PepsiCo has a proven track record of promoting health and well-being via its products and advertising endeavours. The business also had a solid consumer base that valued its efforts to encourage healthy living.

The Target Audience

The PepsiCo campaign was directed at parents, kids, and teenagers. Encouragement of healthy habits and an increase in physical activity were the objectives of these programs. In the textbook “Think Public Relations,” the target audience is described as “the group of people at whom a public relations campaign is aimed” (Wilcox, Cameron, Reber & Shin, 2013, p. 116). PepsiCo understood parents’ important role in influencing their kids’ eating and fitness habits. In order to appeal to parents’ desires to promote healthy habits in their kids, the campaign was created.

The Message and Communication

The “Dance Off” competition at the heart of PepsiCo’s campaign enticed participants to post videos of themselves dancing to hit tunes. The ad was created to encourage physical exercise while also being entertaining and interesting. The definition of the message in the textbook, “Think Public Relations,” is “the essence of what the communicator hopes to achieve” (Wilcox, Cameron, Reber & Shin, 2013, p. 116). The idea of PepsiCo’s advertising campaign was that healthy habits could be incorporated into everyday life in a realistic and sustainable manner. Physical exercise can also be joyful and exciting.

Flier showing an advert for the “Dance Off” competition on Pepsi’s website.Source PepsiCo

Flier showing an advert for the “Dance Off” competition on Pepsi’s website.Source PepsiCo. (2013).

The promotion of the campaign by PepsiCo took place through various media channels such as in-store promotions, television commercials, and social media. The company grasped that engaging with its target market was crucial via social platforms, particularly among young individuals. Consequently, Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube were utilized to disseminate information on the crusade while encouraging others to join hands too. Additionally contributing towards promoting awareness about this initiative were TV advertisements crafted for inspiration & attraction purposes alongside encouragement towards learning more details about it, followed up by becoming a part of this drive sponsored by the corporation itself. Signage and displays supporting the campaign were part of in-store marketing.

Communication Tactics

To reach its target demographic, PepsiCo used a variety of strategies in its campaign. The “Dance Off” competition itself was one of the best strategies. Social media sharing tools and hashtags were used to widely publicize the competition and entice participants to tell their friends about it. This strategy adheres to the definition of tactics given in the textbook, which is “specific actions taken to support a strategy or achieve an objective” (Wilcox, Cameron, Reber & Shin, 2013, p. 116). By using sharing options and hashtags, PepsiCo built a viral marketing campaign that created much talk.

The creation of television commercials advertising the campaign was another strategy used by PepsiCo. The advertisements highlighted the initiative and urged viewers to go to the campaign website to learn more and get involved. This strategy adheres to the definition of tactics given in the textbook, which is “specific actions taken to support a strategy or achieve an objective” (Wilcox, Cameron, Reber & Shin, 2013, p. 35).

Impact on the Public

The “Dance Off” promotion by PepsiCo had a mainly good effect. The business garnered much media attention, and several news organizations praised the campaign for its creative strategy for encouraging healthy living. Many young people participated in the online dance challenges and the real events, demonstrating how well the ad connected with its target demographic. In a PepsiCo poll, 73% of respondents said that after watching the ad, they were more inclined to select PepsiCo goods. The advertising campaign assisted in changing the public’s impression of the corporation from one that sold sugary beverages and snacks to one that encouraged active living.

During Pepsi release of Beyonce’s “Dance off" Superfan Video. Source PepsiCo. (2013).

During Pepsi release of Beyonce’s “Dance off” Superfan Video. Source PepsiCo. (2013).

The Takeaway

A key takeaway from PepsiCo’s “Dance Off” campaign is matching your PR strategies with your overall business objectives. By recognizing the growing inclination amongst young people towards healthy living, PepsiCo effectively created a campaign that specifically resonated with this generation. They successfully disseminated their message and attracted customers by implementing various tactics ranging from social media to live events and online videos. This approach enabled them to distinguish themselves from other brands commonly associated only with sugary drinks and snacks by positioning their brand as one advocating for healthy lifestyles.


Finally, PepsiCo’s “Dance Off” campaign is a great illustration of proactive PR that integrates tactics and strategy. By recognizing the growing inclination towards healthy lifestyles among youngsters, PepsiCo skillfully devised a promotional scheme that catered to this demographic. The enterprise employed an array of tactics, including digital platforms such as social media and online videos, in addition, to live events, with the intent of propagating their philosophy while simultaneously luring potential clients. It is worth noting that through the implementation of the aforementioned campaign strategies, there was significant modification observed within public perception regarding the said corporation, subsequently leading consumers toward proclivity for merchandise bearing PepsiCo’s brand name. The key takeaway from this case study is how crucial it is to match our PR strategies with our entire business plan and to be aware of new trends in our target market.


PepsiCo. (2013). Pepsi Invites Fans to “Dance for a Chance.”

Wilcox, D. L., Cameron, G. T., Reber, B. H., & Shin, J.-H. (2013). THINK Public Relations. Pearson Higher Ed.


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