Pepsi, Doritos and Betty White Are Crashing Super Bowl XLV

Pepsi, Doritos and Betty White Are Crashing Super Bowl XLV
Pepsi, Doritos and Betty White Are Crashing Super Bowl XLV

One year after sitting on the Super Bowl advertising sidelines, Pepsi (PEP) is returning to the gridiron this year with its "Crash the Super Bowl" campaign, in conjunction with corporate sibling Doritos.

The campaign's premise is to encourage consumers to create their own Super Bowl ads -- and this year, Pepsi has enlisted the support of arguably the hottest celebrity on the planet: screen legend Betty White.

DailyFinance interviews Betty White

As in the Super Bowl, the stakes are high: There's $5 million in prize money on the line for sweeping the USA Today ad meter rankings, as well as a job with PepsiCo creating the next generation of company ads. Pepsi and Doritos will air three 30-second consumer-created ads during the 2011 Super Bowl broadcast on Feb. 11, "leaving it up to fans to decide whether they submit Doritos ads, Pepsi MAX ads or -- for those that are especially ambitious -- ads for each."

The Future of Marketing

Jill Beraud, chief marketing officer and president, Joint Ventures, PepsiCo Beverages Americas, and Ann Mukherjee, senior vice-president and chief marketing officer of Frito-Lay North America, stopped by DailyFinance's office last week to discuss the campaign.

"We're all about putting our consumers' engagement first," Mukherjee said. "We tried last year to win one, two and three on the ad meter and we got number two, but we have not finished the quest."

So this year, Pepsi and Frito Lay, a subsidiary, are redoubling their efforts -- and sweetening the pot. "If you win number one in the ad meter you get a million bucks," Mukherjee said. "if you get number two, you get $600,000, number three, $400,000."

Bu the rewards don't stop there. "If you get one, two and three, you all get a $1 million bonus," Mukherjee said. "And Jill and I are going to hire the winner, and they're going to create the first ever Doritos Pepsi Max commercial, which will be our advertising for 2011."

"We really believe empowering consumers is the future," Beraud added. "That's really the future of marketing, where the consumer is in control and they get to express their creativity."

DailyFinance interviews Jill Beraud and Ann Mukherjee