Pepsi logo and poppycock

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Being in the advertising business, one is used to hearing (and practicing) some amount of exaggeration. One is also familiar with complex explanations of what a logo, font or colour represents, specially when it comes to brand identity. When the Canara Bank logo was unveiled the PR blurb said: rich blue connote stability, scale and depth while the bright yellow depicts optimism, warmth and energy. The distinctive brand identity is based on the idea of a bond and togetherness and is a representation of the close ties between the bank and its many stakeholders. True. Except that the bank employees continue to be uninterested in me, a customer.

But this one takes the cake and the bakery shop. An internal document from the Arnell Group, outlining the approach to the new Pepsi logo has made its way online. The document, humbly titled ‘Breathtaking’ has gems like this:

Continued investment provides us with a clear resource for reinvention.

The Pepsi ethos has evolved over time. The vocabulary of truth and simplicity is a reoccurring phenomena in the brand’s history. It communicates the brand in a timeless manner and with an expression of clarity. Pepsi BREATHTAKING builds on this knowledge. True innovation always begins by investigating the historic path. Going back-to-the-roots moves the brand forward as it changes the trajectory of the future.

Applying Universal Laws to Establish a Blueprint for the Brand.

The universe expands exponentially with f(x)=ex. [1 light year = 671 million miles per hour]. Dimensionalize exponentially.

The document also contains visual representations of and comparisons with: the golden ratio, the Mona Lisa, the Parthenon, the Gutenberg Bible, the earth and its magnetic fields, and the solar system/universe.


What have all these got to do with sugared water? Apparently, there is no official word from Arnell. The document was leaked on social news site Reddit by someone claiming to be a freelancer in the industry. So it could very well be a hoax or better still, a campaign to get people talking about the logo. Yes, marketing & agency folks thrive on exaggeration. How else do you sell everyday stuff like lozenges & colas? Check out what the blogosphere is saying about it. In my experience, the various elements of a logo get assembled purely on the basis of what someone likes – usually without a reason. And the final logo is usually created by the frustrated (and tired) Art guy who simply wants the job closed. Strategy is written later, as with some advertising campaigns.

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  1. I used to work in the Aviation industry, and at a meeting once someone questioned why in the 70’s or 80’s the interior of one of the major airline’s airplanes were all in purple. It turns out purple was the favorite color of the wife of the CEO at the time. At least it’s comforting that there’s still no such thing as “they.” Someone actively made the decision. My guess is the wife’s favorite color theory might not have been in the stratey statement?

  2. Inspite of all evidence to the contrary, the entire universe is composed of only 2 basic substances: Magic and Bullshit…This is more like a breathtaking magical bullshit.

  3. Seriously… There should be a limit for anything and everything… May be these people are trying to prove a point – “Advertising and Branding are Rocket Science”!!!

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