CBS rejects SodaStream's Super Bowl ad

The commercial took aim at Pepsi and Coke, and that put the broadcaster in a very uncomfortable position.

By Aimee Picchi Jan 28, 2013 11:50AM

Image: Watching television (Klaus Tiedge/Getty Images/Getty Images)SodaStream (SODA) has learned the hard way that it's not a good idea to take potshots at two of the Super Bowl's biggest advertisers. 

CBS (CBS), which will broadcast the game on Feb. 3, has rejected the home soda-maker's Super Bowl ad. The issue? The commercial's content concerned the network because it took aim at Coca-Cola (KO) and Pepsi (PEP), reports Advertising Age

It's not the first time SodaStream has courted censure with its commercials. While the advertisements aren't racy or wild, they seek to illustrate the benefits of making soda at home, rather than buying soda from the store. To that end, its first global ad campaign depicted ordinary consumers making soda at home, while shelves and warehouses filled with plastic-bottled drinks disappeared.

That message was deemed strong enough to get the commercial yanked in the U.K. late last year, with regulators deciding the campaign was too denigrating toward soda makers.

For its rejected Super Bowl ad, SodaStream took an even stronger jab at the soda giants, AdAge notes. The spot depicted truck drivers in clothing with Pepsi and Coke logos, SodaStream chief marketing officer Ilan Nacasch told the publication.

"We had submitted an ad that we preferred to show, but it was not approved, perhaps due to being too provocative regarding the bottled-soda industry," SodaStream spokesman Yonah Lloyd tells MSN Money in an email.

The new plan is for SodaStream to air an older ad that was tweaked by its agency, according to a tweet from Alex Bogusky, the co-founder of SodaStream's ad agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky. 

Creating controversy with proposed Super Bowl commercials isn't unheard of these days. The animal-rights activist group PETA, for one, often aims for attention by creating envelope-pushing Super Bowl ads. No surprise that their ads, which have featured scantily clad women having fun with vegetables, have been rejected by the networks airing the Super Bowl.

As for SodaStream, the company wasn't trying for an attention grab by getting its commercial rejected, according to AdAge. 

"We really tried to comply with the standards" from CBS, Nacasch said, according to the story.

The company didn't hear from anyone from the beverage industry, SodaStream's Lloyd notes. 

Pepsi will air two 30-second spots, while Coke will air one 60-second ad in the first quarter, according to AdAge

--Aimee Picchi owns shares in PepsiCo. She has not bought or sold the stock in the past 12 months.

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Jan 28, 2013 12:23PM
Bad CBS. Another reason to hate the network. They should be fined by the FCC.
I see ......shows you just how business can be Uncompetitive...closer to a Binopoly with Coke and Pepsi?  LOL
Jan 28, 2013 4:42PM
First Amendment rights, na, not in the real world.  Looks like Coke (worlds strongest brand) and Pepsi are getting the message....stop feeding people pure surgar. It had to start coming to a head at some point. This may just put it in the front page.
Jan 28, 2013 8:30PM

Sugar? No. How about high-fructose corn syrup.

With shipping costs skyrocketing, I think a home based soda maker that would take Pepsi and Coke marketed "flavor packs" would be nice, add your own sugar or sweetener as you see fit.

No more cans of soda shipped from who knows where made with who knows what water and corn syrup, and everyone wins.


Jan 28, 2013 6:51PM
Feb 1, 2013 6:05PM
I have painfully arthritic hands and a budget, and I hate landfills and oceans full of plastic bottles. Now I only buy one tiny bottle of concentrate per week instead of 7 heavy 2-liter bottles, my hands thank me, and I don't contribute to plastic islands in the oceans anymore.  I don't have to provide all that storage space at home anymore, either.   I get great taste rather than the lousy generic brand sodas and all the above benefits with my SodaStream.  Coke and Pepsi and all the rest need to wise up!  If they want to compete with this will-be giant, they'd better be building a new mousetrap of their own.  I LOVE my SodaStream!   SodaStream has the best new product of the millenium, IMHO! 
Jan 30, 2013 10:36AM
They didn't (a Network) reject the ad where a driver for one company, in uniform, buys the competition's soda at a convenience store.  So why this ad that fights both and reduces waste of cans and bottles by 90%.  Other country's have seen the at home soda light, but not the US which is owned by the big sale advertiser's and their lobbies, whether it's in the legislature or the commercial TV networks. The US will follow the other nations that led the world and then after a decline, did not!
Jan 29, 2013 9:51AM
Weeeellllll since we're all allowed to keep our twisted knickers firmly wedged between our butt-cheeks and get all offended over whatever we want- even a little *healthy* competition (yes that was a pun!) that makes fun of the two largest soda manufacturers in the world: I'm offended that Coke & Pepsi have the monopoly on fizzy, overly sweet, sticky, and nutririonally useless beverages and all this article did was make me consider making my own. I didnt know SodaStream existed, but I'll go check them out now! 

Thanks CBS!
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