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The Biz of Fizz: Why Soda Brands Are Spending Millions To Promote Taylor Swift, Tiesto in 2014

The second half of 2014 sees Big Gulp-sized soda partnerships with artists.

The Biz of Fizz: Why Soda
Michael Tran/FilmMagic

In 2014, 7UP doubled down on its lucky number by linking with Tiesto, Ultra, Insomniac and others for its 7x7Up initiative: seven top festivals, seven rising DJs (Danny Avila, Disco Fries, Dzeko & Torres), a few Tiesto TV spots and a release party for his new album. 7UP has spent an estimated $30 million on the campaign thus far, including the addition of a seventh stage to June’s massive Electric Daisy Las Vegas festival (estimated attendance: 400,000).


The Biz of Fizz: Why Soda
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For a media campaign surrounding its 2013 spokeswoman’s new 1989, Diet Coke sponsored a takeover of iHeartMedia’s top 40 stations and On-Air With Ryan Seacrest, as well as a TV blitz for a 30-second cat-covered spot featuring Swift’s “How You Get the Girl.”  Diet Coke execs recently told Billboard that this year’s media spend will surpass their 2013 outlays, which totaled $26 million, according to Kantar Media.


The Biz of Fizz: Why Soda
Gabriel Olson (Avicii), Craig Barritt (Wyclef) / Getty

For World AIDS Day (Dec. 1), the soda giant is partnering with nonprofit Red and others to premiere exclusive new tracks from Queen (with unreleased Freddie Mercury vocals) and Aloe Blacc, followed by an Avicii/Wyclef Jean collab and a remix of OneRepublic’s “I Lived.” Coke has already pledged $7 million directly to the Global Fund To Fight Aids, Tuburculosis and Malaria, with an estimated $10 to $13 million in additional ad spend expected in support of the campaign.


The Biz of Fizz: Why Soda
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In a studio the company built with Complex Media in downtown Hollywood earlier this year as part of its “One of a Kind” program, up-and-comers Tinashe, Robert DeLong and RAC recorded three exclusive EPs with hot producers RZA, Dave Sitek and The Hood Internet. Billboard estimates that the total campaign cost an estimated $1 to $3 million in media spend and production costs.


The Biz of Fizz: Why Soda
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Besides partnering with Blake Shelton and Usher for a co-headlining set in Dallas in 2015, Pepsi made its smartest cola buy in 2014 with emerging talent: funding music videos by Sebastian Mikael, Mayaeni and Nico & Vinz. Billboard estimates Pepsi’s support of the three music videos at roughly $1 million.

This article first appeared in the Nov. 22 issue of Billboard.

Correction, Nov. 19: An earlier version of this story incorrectly indicated that each artist was paid directly for their respective ad campaigns. The dollar figures are Billboard estimates of media spend based on data from Kantar Media and industry sources, not endorsement or talent fees paid directly to each artist.