PR Win: New SodaStream Spot Defies Ad Censors

Last week we reported on a great ad by SodaStream, the masters of DIY carbonation. While we find the concept of homemade soda fascinating, we were mostly concerned with UK ad regulatory body Clearcast‘s decision to take the ad off the air for potentially offending the hyper-sensitive small business owners Coca-Cola and Pepsico. Won’t someone think of the little guys?

Anyway, today brings encouraging news: Instead of admitting defeat and slinking off to pout in a corner, SodaStream’s communications team decided to make the most of the ongoing “debate” by airing a second spot called “Bubble Blackout” that consists of a black screen featuring the words “if you love the bubbles, set them free” atop the first ad’s audio. The video concludes with a link allowing viewers to defy the ban by viewing the offending spot on YouTube.

Click the screenshot to check out the new spot:

It’s clever–the company makes an ideological statement casting itself as the victim of corporate aggression while simultaneously encouraging viewers to work around the Clearcast ban by checking the original out on YouTube in order to find out what all the fuss is about.

The ad ran during one of Britain’s most popular reality shows, ensuring that thousands more would view the first video with a new appreciation In the end, we’d say Clearcast’s attempt to silence SodaStream backfired, because it ended up earning the Little Company That Could a lot of good karma–and some great PR.

@PatrickCoffee Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.
Publish date: December 3, 2012 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT