PepsiR and Zakir Khan Collaborate to Encourage Friends to Rise Above Friendzone

PepsiR and Zakir Khan collaborate to encourage friends to rise above friendzone in a humorous campaign.


PepsiR teams up with comedian Zakir Khan to inspire friends to support each other and escape the friendzone in a humorous campaign.


Our Analysis and Commentary

Rise up from Friendzone: PepsiR and Zakir Khan Empower Youth Through Humor

The collaboration between PepsiR and renowned comedian Zakir Khan couldn’t have come at a better time, as they aim to celebrate Friendship Day in a unique and irreverent manner. This partnership showcases PepsiR’s commitment to being the voice of the generation and inspiring young friends to stand by each other and rise up from the dreaded ‘friendzone’.

With their witty campaign, Zakir Khan encourages the youth to be true friends and motivates them to help their friends escape the friendzone. Leveraging the power of technology, this campaign allows friends to comment on Zakir’s post as a cry for help, and they will receive personalized messages in their inbox to share with their friends as pro-tips to swear by. This not only engages the audience but also provides them with practical advice on how to navigate the complexities of friendships.

Zakir Khan’s comedic flair and impactful narration add a unique charm to this campaign. His message, “Yeh jo friendzone hai na, yeh danger zone hai. Isse nikalo, bhaago, aur koi dost fassa hai toh use bachchao. Kyuki doston ki bhi zimmedari hoti hai. Friendzone ke chakkar se you’ve got to Rise Up Baby!”, resonates with the young generation and empowers them to take responsibility for their friendships.

PepsiR’s choice to collaborate with Zakir Khan, known as the “OG Sakht Launda,” is spot on. His popularity and comedic prowess make him the perfect messenger for this campaign. By aligning themselves with Zakir, PepsiR showcases their understanding of the youth’s preferences and creates a relatable and authentic connection.

Shailja Joshi, Category Lead of Pepsi Cola at PepsiCo India, expresses confidence in the campaign’s success. She recognizes Pepsi’s history of captivating the youth with its irreverence and its ability to transform popular occasions. By giving Friendship Day a unique twist, PepsiR inspires the young generation to rise above the friendzone and enjoy their friendships over a chilled bottle of Pepsi.

Zakir Khan himself is excited to be part of Pepsi’s iconic universe. He values the brand’s friendship and sees this campaign as an opportunity to empower individuals to break free from the friendzone and embrace their true selves. With humor as the driving force, Zakir Khan and PepsiR aim to celebrate friendship, self-expression, and the beauty of being true to oneself.

The creative vision behind this campaign, brought to life by National Creative Director Vikram Pandey of Leo Burnett India, adds depth and appeal to the message. By tapping into the insight that friends are often the first to notice being friendzoned, this campaign urges friends to save each other from such a situation. It highlights the importance of looking out for one another and fostering genuine connections.

This positive and empowering campaign will undoubtedly resonate with the youth. Its robust marketing plan, including digital, social media, and influencers, will help spread the message far and wide, ensuring maximum impact.

PepsiR’s commitment to inspiring friendship, self-expression, and rising above challenges is commendable. By infusing humor into their campaign and partnering with Zakir Khan, they create a powerful narrative that encourages young friends to be there for each other and celebrate their unique bonds. As they say, in the face of friendzone, “Rise Up, Baby!”


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Ahead of Friendship Day, culture curator brand, PEPSIR is all set to celebrate the week of friendship in an irreverent manner. True to its spirit of being the voice of the generation, PepsiR has announced an exciting collaboration with stand-up icon and renowned comedian, Zakir Khan. PepsiR’s witty collaboration with Zakir is aimed at inspiring friends to stand by their buddies and encourage them to “Rise up” from their friendzone situation.

In this one-of-a-kind campaign, Zakir Khan encourages the youth to be true friends to each other, inspire friends to move on and steer friends away from the dreaded ‘friendzone’ – a zone that the young generation is perpetually escaping. By leveraging the power of technology, friends commenting on Zakir’s post as a cry for help for their friends in ‘friendzone’ will get a personalized message directly in their inbox that can be shared amongst friends as a pro-tip to swear by.

In the video, Zakir Khan is seen bringing his signature comedic flair to empower this young generation with an impactful narration that says, “Yeh jo friendzone hai na, yeh danger zone hai. Isse nikalo, bhaago, aur koi dost fassa hai toh use bachchao. Kyuki doston ki bhi zimmedari hoti hai. Friendzone ke chakkar se you’ve got to Rise Up Baby!”

Shailja Joshi, Category Lead, Pepsi Cola, PepsiCo India said, “Pepsi has captivated the youth of India for decades with its irreverence and is known to rewrite the way people see popular occasions each year. Giving Friendship Day a unique twist and inspire the young generation to rise above friendzone with their friends, we could not have asked for a better fit to this campaign than Zakir, the buddy, the OG Sakht Launda. We are confident that Zakir’s comedic prowess and popularity will speak to the youth directly and encourage them to be there for their friends as they break free from friendzone along with a chilled bottle of Pepsi.”

Zakir Khan commented on his excitement to join PepsiR, “I am elated to be a part of the iconic Pepsi universe – a brand that has been my friend over the years. This campaign is all about breaking free from the friendzone and owning who you are, and I am thrilled to be the voice of this message. With humor as the driving force, we will celebrate friendship, self-expression, and the beauty of being true to oneself. I hope the audience enjoys the video and is inspired to ‘Rise Up, Baby!”

Vikram Pandey, National Creative Director (Spiky), Leo Burnett India said, “Often when you are being friend zoned, it’s your friends who can notice it first. This insight seemed really fresh to tap into this Friendship Day for Pepsi. And who better than ‘Sakht Launda’ Zakir Khan to bring this alive. An appeal to all friends, to save their friends from being friend zoned!”

The new campaign will be amplified with a robust marketing plan including digital, social media and influencers. PepsiR is available in single/multi-serve packs across modern and traditional retail outlets as well as on leading e-commerce platforms.

To view the video click here


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