If you're unique, Dr Pepper is the mass-produced beverage for you.
So says the brand in a new campaign from Deutsch/LA titled "Always One of a Kind." The centerpiece spot starts off somber, opening on a regular guy in a regular suit stepping off a train into a crowd of commuters. But wait! He's drinking a Dr Pepper. He's no faceless corporate cog. Cracking a smile, he doffs his drab-gray jacket and blue oxford, Clark Kent style, to reveal a T-shirt with "I'm a One of a Kind" printed across its front in the brand's trademark white-on-maroon colors. Our hero struts off, a new bounce in his step, as a processional of other bold personalities takes shape behind him, each sporting a T-shirt that declares a salient fact about its wearer.
The clever cast of characters—the proud cougar, the unlikely momma's boy, the canine wingman—make the spot. They get an assist from the apt soundtrack—an upbeat rendition of Sammy Davis Jr.'s "I've Gotta Be Me," sung by OneRepublic frontman Ryan Tedder. Overall, it's a well-crafted appeal to individualism, despite feeling at moments like an over-the-top fantasy. (It is, in fact, an updated version of the similarly bubbly 1970s "I'm a Pepper" campaign.)
The brand deserves some kudos for inviting fans to design their own Dr Pepper-themed "I'm a …" T-shirts, even though they're charging for them. Of course, there's a bit of a logical disconnect inherent in the whole message—drinking Dr Pepper is liable to make you more of a soda-guzzling statistic than a totally unique snowflake. With 592 million cases sold in 2010, according to Beverage Digest, it's the fifth most popular soda brand in the universe. Then again, it's not Coke or Pepsi.
Client: Dr Pepper
Chief Creative Officer: Mark Hunter
Group Creative Director: Frank Dattalo
Senior Copywriter: Jed Cohen
Senior Art Director: Karl Haddad
Director of Integrated Production: Vic Palumbo
Director of Broadcast Production: Victoria Guenier
Executive Producer: Tricia Hoover
Production Company: Smith & Jones Films, London
Director: Ulf Johansson
Director of Photography: Andrzej Sekular
Executive Producer/Line Producer: Philippa Smith
Production Manager: Natalie Isaac
Editorial Company: Whitehouse Post
Editor: John Smith
Assistant Editor: Shane Reid
Senior Producer: Kristin Branstetter
Executive Producer: Sue Dawson