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Pepsi Pulse, Pepsi Sound Off to drive social engagement

BY Allison Cerra

PURCHASE, N.Y. — PepsiCo has unveiled two digital platforms that focus on the company’s partnership with Fox’s reality competition show, "The X Factor."

Pepsi Pulse is shaped to be a real-time digital visualization of the conversations taking place on the social media surrounding such Pepsi partnerships as "The X Factor." The platform provides a visual storyline and gives consumers a forum to follow the "pulse" of a certain topic or individual in real-time, the company said.

Meanwhile, Pepsi Sound Off is a social TV platform that allows fans of "The X Factor" to connect with each other and incorporates gaming mechanics to enhance the social TV experience. How it works: Users can log on to Sound Off using their existing Facebook or Twitter accounts and have the option to communicate on Sound Off or share their thoughts on other social media platforms. Once comments about the show are contributed, users can have their comments "fanned" by others. Those that garner the most fans will be in the "spotlight" will have their comment and profile featured in a Pepsi advertisement during the broadcast of the show. For Pepsi Sound Off, the company is leveraging the technology of PepsiCo’s digital labs partner Gigya, a social integration provider. The partnership will power user interaction and engagement by utilizing Gigya’s social login, game mechanics and comments and activity feed plugins.

Eventually, the platforms will drive social engagement around other Pepsi entertainment properties, the company said.

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Emerson Group names Bayer vet to Walmart team

BY Michael Johnsen

WAYNE, Pa. — Emerson Group on Wednesday named Shane Brown to the group’s Walmart team.

Brown comes to Emerson from Bayer HealthCare where he held a variety of roles in sales and category management for Bayer’s over-the-counter businesses working with the Walmart account. His primary responsibility was working as category captain to Walmart on the cough, cold and allergy category. Brown utilized his knowledge of the cough, cold and allergy category in working with Bayer internal brand teams to develop and launch new items, as well as setting brand strategies.

At Emerson, Brown will provide sales and category management analysis, support and strategic direction to the Walmart team and will manage the day-to-day operations of the Emerson Group Walmart office in Bentonville, Ark.

Brown will continue to live in northwest Arkansas with his wife Rachel and their three children.


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Ehrmann boosts distribution of all-natural Bavarian low-fat yogurt

BY Allison Cerra

MISHAWAKA, Ind. — Just a few weeks after launching its all-natural Bavarian low-fat yogurt in the United States, Ehrmann announced that its distribution has tripled.

The company said its yogurt now is available in more than 500 stores throughout New England and upstate New York, including Shaw’s, Price Chopper and Tops.

"America’s affinity with European-styled yogurt is what motivated Ehrmann’s U.S. launch," Ehrmann USA president and CEO Harald Bellm said. "We are very happy to see that it is being so well-received. By tripling our distribution, we are able to more widely deliver a high-quality food to more Americans, which is one of our goals as we continue our U.S. expansion."

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