Rejection breeds attention.
CBS rejected the ad that SodaStream (NASDAQ:SODA) wanted to run during this weekend's Super Bowl, so the Israeli company behind the popular soft drink system is catching something viral.
SodaStream uploaded the banned television commercial to YouTube on Wednesday, and it has already amassed more than 2.2 million views.
The unaired ad calls out PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) and Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), playing homage to the long-running series of ads put out by both Coke and Pepsi in which rival delivery drivers have fun at the other's expense.
Inserting itself into the fisticuffs is clever, but SodaStream had to know that this was going to be a dicey ad. The two cola giants have been Super Bowl sponsors for years. Taking not-so-subtle shots at both companies was probably going a little too far.
The commercial begins with Coke and Pepsi drivers loading up their hand trucks with crates of plastic soda bottles and racing to a supermarket entrance. As soon as a SodaStream button is pressed -- the process that turns tap water into sparkling -- the bottles explode.
It's a similar ad to the first worldwide commercial that SodaStream introduced late last year, only this time it goes for the jugular by singling out Coke and Pepsi. One can even argue that this may have been intentional. SodaStream put itself in a win-win situation with the ad. If it aired it would reach a huge audience. If it didn't, it could still reach millions of viewers for free through YouTube.
There's something else about the banned Super Bowl ad. A SmartCap is used. These are the single-serve syrup pods that SodaStream announced last year but will be rolling out stateside later this year. It's the closest that SodaStream has come to the Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (NASDAQ: GMCR) K-Cup model with disposable flavor pods.
Investors often lump Green Mountain and SodaStream into the same category, but it's an unfair comparison. Sure, they may share a unified goal of providing beverage-making convenience at home, but the market and models are quite different.
The K-Cup-esque nature of SmartCaps will renew the comparisons, though really it's just SodaStream's way of simplifying the flavoring process with pre-portioned servings.
You still have to hand it to SodaStream. It has found a way to cash in on its first Super Bowl commercial.