Pepsi’s Super Bowl Sponsorship Paid Off Where It Counts—in Store Aisles

Instantly's research shows the power of physical display

You pride yourself on independent thinking—heck, let's say you even have a master's degree in philosophy. But just like any American, you were shopping last weekend for potato chips in Aisle 7 as you prepared for the Big Game party.

Let's say the aisle display for Kettle Chips didn't employ anything resembling Super Bowl-related or football-themed creative, while the cardboard signage for PepsiCo's Lay's next to it was adorned with such insignias. There's a one-in-three chance you grabbed a bag of Lay's because of its creative, according to market research vendor Instantly. Indeed, snack and beverage purchase decisions can be about presentation as much as price and product.

The Los Angeles-based Instantly, which was formerly called uSamp and is announcing its rebrand this week, offers a bevy of market research products and survey services. It posed questions to 299 consumers from Jan. 29 through Feb. 1 to discover what snacks and beverages they were buying for the game and why.

Other key findings included: Consumers react positively to large and eye-catching designs, and PepsiCo has mastered the art of Super Bowl display. When given the choice of Super Bowl advertisers, 32 percent of consumers said they liked PepsiCo products the best. It helps that the Purchase, N.Y.-based soda giant was a chief sponsor of NBC's Big Game telecast, therefore having the right to use official Super Bowl symbols. But the consumer psychology of it all is still pretty interesting.

Check out Instantly's infographic from its new research.