Dr Pepper joined larger rival Coca-Cola in the soft-drink lineup for Super Bowl XLIV to promote its Dr Pepper Cherry line extension, introduced just the summer before. The soda marketers wouldn’t rub shoulders with Pepsi, which sat out the game for the first time in 23 years to focus on its coming "Pepsi Refresh Project," a marketing effort that aligned Pepsi with social responsibility and put a heavy emphasis on digital media.
“Little Kiss,” featuring the band Kiss and its song “Calling Dr. Love,” was only Dr Pepper’s second appearance in the game, after 2001’s “Hudson Riverdance.” It’s a certain but common genre of Super Bowl ad: penetrating, not subtle.
The spot continued the “Trust Me, I’m a Dr,” campaign out of Deutch L.A., which also starred Dr. Dre, Dr. J and Kelsey Grammer, known for his TV role as Dr. Frasier Crane. Interpublic Group of Companies' Deutsch won the Dr Pepper business from Dentsu's McGarryBowen in 2008.
A few months after the Super Bowl, Dr Pepper Snapple Group said its first-quarter sales volume grew 3%, partly on the strength of Dr Pepper Cherry and its promotion in the Super Bowl. The marketer of brands also including Canada Dry, 7Up and Mott's boosted first-quarter media spending by 25% and said it planned to increase its second-quarter outlay by about 20%, or $25 million.Send credit info to [email protected].