Celebrate Your Worth

The Time When 7 Up Dethroned Coke & Pepsi

It is believed that in a particular product category (detergent, beer, cars, soaps, etc.) there is space for only two or three dominating brands in a consumer’s mind.

Let’s say you’re asked to think about brands of potato chips. Well, I can tell that Lays is on your list for sure, followed by Uncle Chips and Bingo or something. It is unlikely that you first thought of Pringles or Pogo. Or even that local brand that makes for awesome chaat with your beer. Speaking of which… Tuborg and Kingfisher, maybe? Unlikely that you thought of Haywards or Heineken first. So you see, while you are familiar with more than a couple of brands, there are only about two of those which dominate. This hierarchy of sorts is a consequence of brand positioning (or Vijay Mallya’s shenanigans).

In the 70s, Coke & Pepsi would dominate the soft drinks market and while other drinks were popular too, soft drinks essentially meant cola. In came the citrus drink 7 Up, repositioned as the uncola, and single handedly dethroned both with one simple albeit brilliant strike. A straightforward insight, realised into an extensive and immensely popular marketing campaign that created a greater demand for the product – suddenly, everyone wanted a piece of this magnificently clear uncola.

From Uncool to Uncola – The Fabulous Psychedelic 7-Up Ads 1969-1973

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