Saturday, March 17, 2012

How Pepsi hijacked a social project?

This video doing the rounds of social network these days shows an inspiring story of how a man brought light to his neighbourhood in Phillipines using empty plastic bottles, water, bleach and innovation.

Didn’t you just love it.
Lets rewind a bit here and know more about this project.


MyShelter Foundation, an organization established by Illac Diaz, strives to create a system of sustainability and reliability through its capability-building and employment-generating projects in Philippines. One of their projects, Isang Litrong Liwanag (A Liter of Light), is a sustainable lighting project which aims to lighten the lives of under privileged communities by harnessing solar energy to generate light by simply using a plastic bottle, water and bleach. Alfredo Moser from Brazil introduced this concept and the students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) refined it concept to bring the Solar Bottle Bulb to Philipinnes through MyShelter Foundation . This project becomes popular as it shows how a small innovation made such a large difference to the world. The video below showcases this project in detail.

But it seems like someone from the Pepsi team got a bit miffed seeing that all the plastic bottles in project video (as seen above) were of Coke (now we know how colors become such a crucial part of a brand’s identity). She instantly spots an opportunity in making a crisp colorful English video using Pepsi bottles that might seem like the official or atleast authentic video of this project. The video also introduces a character, Solar Demi, who seems to have discovered the Solar Bottle Bulb to make the story even more endearing, showing a man’s will to succeed against all odds. But in actual this person seems to be just one of the volunteers / employee of the MyShelter foundation. The videos even lends one to believe that the solar bulb will lighten the nights too. Its like Pepsi lightening up all the ills of energy deficiency. And to vindicate her assumption this smartly produced video goes on to achieve nearly 2 lac views within a fortnight on Youtube. She succeeds in adding  a bit of Pepsi to this project. It further leads the viewers to the official site of Isang Litrong Liwanag and thus even making it authentic.

Smart girl, I say. A mouseable opportunity is always around the corner. Its for us, marketers, to spot it and use it beautifully.

Now lets see a few videos of this idea to educate and inspire us to spread it amongst the benefitting segments.

Heres the original innovator, Alfredo Moser, at work.

Reuters taking us through My Shelter Foundation's execution in Phillipines.

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