Last year Soda Stream ran its first Super Bowl ad ever. The spot was mediocre; the Kellogg Super Bowl Advertising Review panel gave it a C.
Here it is:
Soda Stream was smart to advertise on the Super Bowl. The brand was growing quickly and needed to accelerate adoption. A Super Bowl ad is a great way to build broad awareness and spark adoption.
The issue: Soda Stream had a strategy problem.
Soda Stream’s 2013 spot featured exploding bottles. As people carbonated water, plastic soda bottles blew up. The key line was this: “With Soda Stream you can save 2,000 bottles a year.”
The basic issue is that saving bottles isn’t a compelling benefit for most people. I’m certain it scored well in consumer tests because people like to think they care about the environment. The benefit probably did even better in focus group studies. But it isn’t a strong enough benefit to drive a behavior change.
Saving bottles is not why most people will use Soda Stream. If someone really wanted to save bottles they would be drinking regular tap water from a reusable jug.
As a result, the 2013 Super Bowl ad fell a bit flat. You can only do so much with a flawed strategy.
Soda Stream is advertising on the Super Bowl again in 2014. This year the brand needs to do better. This is particularly the case in light of its weak earnings announcement this week.
The first task: find a benefit. Soda Stream has to put forth a more compelling reason for people to use the product. It could be the experience, convenience or value. The brand has to find something.
Soda Stream announced over the weekend that it signed Scarlett Johansson as a spokesperson and she will appear in the brand’s Super Bowl spot.
This is a good first step; a celebrity endorser is a great way to spark interest.
Now Soda Stream has to find a benefit and make a compelling case.