Pepsi Polls Public for Super Bowl Spot

NEW YORK — For the second year in a row, Pepsi is letting Web surfers pick one of their spots to air during the Super Bowl. Starting today, people can vote on which “Pepsi Generation” from the new Britney Spears commercial, they’d like to see as a 30-second spot in the second quarter of the NFL championship.

At the site , people can choose between “Doo-Wop,” “Surf’s Up,” and “New Millennium,” three versions that highlight the 1950s,1970s and present day, respectively. Voting ends Friday at 11:59 p.m. Less than a day into the campaign, “New Millennium” is out front with more than 8,500 votes. The other two are nearly tied, capturing about 2,400 votes each.

Last year, Pepsi teamed with Yahoo to let consumers vote online for their favorite all-time Pepsi Super Bowl spot. The 1991 commercial dubbed “Two Kids,” starring Cindy Crawford, won and was aired during the post-game show.

This year’s online program is centered around Pepsi’s new 90-second spot, called “Now and Then,” which takes viewers on a ride through the cola company’s advertising history. In the spot, which also debuts during the Super Bowl, Spears adds her flair to Pepsi spots from the 1950s, 60s, 70s, 80s and today. The spot was created by BBDO in New York.

Simultaneous to the premiere of “Now and Then” during Sunday’s game, Yahoo will also run the spot on its home page. The move marks the first time a streaming video commercial will appear on the portal’s home.

The Web site for the promotion also features a photo diary that documents in the pop star’s words the 3-day commercial shoot, directed by Joe Pytka. The site also links to a Yahoo charity auction, where users can bid on items and clothing Spears used during her multiple commercial shoots.

Pepsi is not the only marketer that is letting people vote on a Super Bowl spot via the Internet. Levi’s ended a one-month promotion Sunday that polled the public to determine their second quarter Big Game spot [IQ Daily Briefing Jan. 8].

(For more on the Levi’s spots, see Barbara Lippert’s Critique from this week’s issue.}