Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Cola Wars no more.

In a move that was both ethically sound and a PR coup, PepsiCo not only reported an act of industrial espionage, but actually helped the FBI catch the criminals. According to this BBC article, PepsiCo notified their arch-rival CocaCola to the fact that someone had been filching their fizzy-recipes. They then worked together with the FBI to catch the criminals in the act.

It might seem counter-intuitive that a company that would have so much to gain from a little underhandedness, but in this case Pepsi not only gained the moral high ground, but also a nice positive mention in every news story that covers this case.

It wouldn't be surprising if the initial Press Releases regarding this case were issued by PepsiCo or their PR firm. This is exactly the type of Guerrilla Marketing that small businesses can emulate. Have you contributed to a charity event, hired a new executive level manager, or done anything that could be notable if it were taking place at a company like Pepsi? Throw together a press release, there are many templates available online, and send it to your local paper and any local business magazines. And since a fax is just a button away, why not send a release to the major regional papers. This kind of marketing puts your name out there, and if you end up in the business section at the cost of typing up a press release, it's infinitely cheaper than paying a marketing firm to do the same.

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