Pepsi adopts a new tagline, ‘that’s what I like,’ and promises to stick with it

The brand had recently been using a varying—and some would argue forgettable—array of lines in the U.S.: by E.J. Schultz, January 02, 2020


Pepsi is known for memorable taglines, from “Taste of a New Generation” to “Joy of Pepsi.” But lately, the soda’s catchphrases have been pretty forgetful—mostly because it hasn’t stuck to a single line in ads. But starting today, the brand is going for a more consistent approach with a new tagline, “That’s What I Like,” that will be used for all Pepsi varieties including regular Pepsi, Pepsi Zero Sugar and Diet Pepsi.

The U.S. campaign includes five national TV ads that show people breaking into dance during everyday situations, like riding on a subway or grilling out. Omnicom Group’s Goodby Silverstein & Partners and Alma worked on the campaign.

The spots will run on digital in addition to TV programming such as the “Golden Globes.” Pepsi has not commented on its Super Bowl ad plans, but it seems likely the line will underpin its marketing in and around the game, which includes sponsorship of the halftime show headlined by Jennifer Lopez and Shakira. Shakira’s “Whenever, Wherever,” is the soundtrack for one of the new spots (above).

The ads are meant to appeal to people who “are comfortable in their own skin [and] enjoy life unapologetically without really worrying about what other people think,” says Pepsi Marketing VP Todd Kaplan, noting that the the brand’s consumer research revealed that the approach plays well with Pepsi loyalists.

In recent months Pepsi has used different taglines for each season. In the fall it began running a National Football League-themed campaign dubbed “Always Be Celebrating,” while its more recent holiday campaign starring Cardi B used the line “Gift it Forward.” For its Super Bowl campaign a year ago, Pepsi ran an ad it dubbed “More than OK” because it challenged the oft-asked question at restaurants, “Is Pepsi OK.” Using a strict definition, that campaign did not technically include a tagline because “More than OK” never really appeared on-screen in text form.

There is an claim to be made that taglines are less relevant in an age when brands pump out constant digital content that in many cases is designed to play off of some sort of current news event or cultural trend. Kaplan argues that taglines still matter in the sense that they provide consistency. “Having something that is sticky enough and that is very clear and concise … will only really help re-emphasize our brand point-of-view,” he says.

The ads are tailored for the U.S. market. Globally, Pepsi had been using the tagline “Live for Now” for about seven years before switching to “For the Love of It” about a year ago. That line has not been used in the U.S.