Pepsi's silent Super Bowl ad was Plano man's idea

Hey, this is exciting news… considering I live in Plano. Just watched the — of course, captioned — video and laughed out loud. Well, congrats… Pepsi is getting more promotion out of it with blogs like this posting about it. Hope it makes up for the big budget they put into airing it during the Super Bowl.
From The Dallas Morning News
By Karen Robinson-Jacobs
PepsiCo Inc. is hoping to make some noise with a Super Bowl ad featuring 60 seconds of silence.
During the Fox network’s pregame show on Feb. 3, the nation’s second-largest soft drink maker will air a commercial conceived by a PepsiCo employee, starring him and three others, including two who are deaf.


PepsiCo, based in Purchase, N.Y., owns Plano-based Frito-Lay Inc. It will sponsor the closed captioning of the big game.
In “Bob’s House”– a takeoff on a popular joke in the deaf community – the actors/employees communicate using sign language. Viewers can follow the story line through captions.
The commercial is the brainchild of Clay Broussard, a supply chain manager based in Plano, who is also a member of the company’s EnAble employee group.
With about 500 members, EnAble aims to promote “a more inclusive environment for people with disabilities,” the company said.
Mr. Broussard, 46, said Thursday he sees the Super Bowl commercial as a way to promote both diversity and products from his employer of 27 years.
“We think it will be funny and be talked about the next day,” said Mr. Broussard, who came up with the idea in 2006 and took a demo tape last year to his boss, John Phillips. Mr. Phillips presented the idea to management, which gave the green light for the professionally done version that debuts next Sunday.
Mr. Broussard appears in the commercial along with colleagues Darren Therriault and Brian Dowling, who are deaf. It also includes Dallas-based employee Sheri Christianson, whose parents are deaf.
The ad shows Mr. Therriault and Mr. Dowling trying to find the home of their friend Bob. They have the street but neither knows the house number. Their solution: Make enough noise to attract the attention of Bob’s neighbors who can hear. The home where no one responds must be Bob’s.
PepsiCo said it consulted with the National Association of the Deaf while producing the commercial.
While deaf actors and actors using sign language have appeared in commercials for decades, advertising executive Steve McKee said he could not think of a similar Super Bowl ad.
“It’s a highly unusual tactic and an interesting one for the Super Bowl,” said Mr. McKee, president of Albuquerque, N.M.-based McKee Wallwork Cleveland, which sponsors an online Super Bowl ad rating site called AdBowl.
“Any time you can do something to break the convention, that’s really, really smart.”
As it has for the past 22 years, PepsiCo also will have ads during the game. The company’s beverage side has two minutes of air time but has not unveiled its commercials, a spokeswoman said.
Frito-Lay will have one 60-second spot promoting Doritos. The ad will be a music video featuring this year’s “Doritos Crash the Super Bowl” contest winner, selected by voters online.

4 comments

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    • no name on January 25, 2008 at 5:09 pm
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    JohnABC tells his joke almost same as above last July 2007 on his vlog, so hope JohnABC get some money from commerical, ha!

  1. Here’s the link to the behind-the-scenes footage.

    • Meryl on January 31, 2008 at 8:42 am
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    Chicago Tribune article on the commercial. More free publicity.

    • Meryl on February 3, 2008 at 9:29 pm
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    Better video from Youtube

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