NOT FOR WOMEN
While watching the Ranger's game last night I saw a new Dr. Pepper commercial that I did not exactly agree with. Dr. Pepper has come up with a new diet soda aimed at male consumers who may be apprehensive about drinking diet soft drinks that are widely viewed as "feminine" drinks.
This commercial is being aired on all major stations during college football and baseball games, such as FX and ESPN. Dr. Pepper TEN with "ten bold tasting calories" is being sold as a more masculine alternative to Diet Dr. Pepper. The commercial is complete with laser guns blazing, anaconda's snapping, boulder's rolling down hill, booby-traps, and cliff diving into army jeeps to further play up the latent Indian Jones/G. I. Joe hidden inside the average male consumer. This I found rather amusing.
Dr. Pepper's ad campaign is based on the diet drink containing only ten "manly" calories with the same 23 flavors Dr. Pepper fans, myself included, have come to know and love. Perhaps the more health-conscious males that were previously apprehensive about drinking diet sodas, most likely in fear of derision from immature peers who take to mocking anything that falls under a stereotype, would be more inclined to drink a diet soda with such a "macho" ad campaign.
Over all I had liked the commercial, and was actually interested in trying the new product, up until the last two to four seconds of the commercial. In the final scene, right next to a rather refreshing-looking Dr. Pepper Ten can, in big letters read. NOT FOR WOMEN.
Now I am not a particularly feminist woman, but this completely affronted me, to put it in much nicer words than I would like to use at the moment. Furthermore, Dr. Pepper Ten has a Facebook page with an application that allows them to exclude female viewers from accessing the site. I accessed the site through a male friends page, it hosts typical "manly" quizzes and games, such as shooting lipstick and high heels.
Overall, I see this as a very risky ad campaign. By excluding women from this product they are alienating a good portion of their main market segment. Personally, as a life long fan of Dr. Pepper, this is not going to stop me from drinking the product, in fact there is a bottle of Dr. Pepper next to me as I write this.
However my views of the Dr Pepper Snapple Group as a corporation have changed dramatically, which is unfortunate as I am also rather fond of their other brands, particularly Squirt, Sunkist, Clamato, and Canada Dry. My feelings were not helped by the fact that the Ranger's lost last nights game, or the fact that I saw the commercial again during the Ranger's game I am watching while writing this, and that we are currently tied. I will be amazed if Larry Young or another DPS spokesperson end up having to publicly apologize for this unnecessarily sexist ad campaign.