Mountain Dew in Vietnam: What’s wrong with you?

One of the worst slogans I’ve ever heard

Targeting teenagers and young adults preferring modern action sports such as parkour, skateboarding or trial biking, Mountain Dew is trying to appeal to this growing adventure-oriented and stylish segment among Vietnamese young people via its slogan: “Thỏa khí phách” (roughly translated to English as: “Satisfy the adventurous and heroic gut”). It tries to engage the word “khí phách” (“adventurous and heroic gut”)  in every article writing about Mountain Dew and even in its Facebook Status posts.


Bad slogan! Why use such a Sino-Vietnamese (Hán- Việt) word that is usually used to describe people in the older times, especially men with great vision, courage and readiness to contributing to his country?! Why use such a vocabulary that is so deeply involved in the old thinking style of people in the older generation to appeal to such a modern, fast-changing and highly-individualistic customer as such? In Vietnamese, “khí phách” often ties closely to heroes doing heroic acts. I don’t think our target customers here prefer to be called “heroes”. They are young, active, willing to take risks and especially have a strong sense of personality and uniqueness. What they are trying to do is to be themselves and experience life to the fullest,thus relating heroism to these young people is really awkward. And a bit mocking: “These people are ready to break their bones and give up their lives for these dangerous sports. Heroes!!!”


Amateurish Public Relation! Absolute failure.


Aiming at creating a buzz through a TVC showing the Bitexco Financial Tower at HCMC changing its light color and surprising people with an ad appeared on the building itself. Most of us would doubt about the truth and of course, the clip is fake. Bitexco Tower did not (and cannot) display such an ad clip on itself. Have a look at the clip:



So far, the idea does trigger curiousity among people: “Is this fake?”, “This is creative artwork if done real”. However, the failing point in this word-of-mouth generation is that Mountain Dew created curiousity, but it ended up dissatifying and annoying customers when they find out the truth. I am feeling being cheated!

But that is not the end of the story. They next make huge and hilarious amateurish mistakes when trying to spread this buzz via articles on Kenh 14, 2 sao and other young-targeted online media, on which the content is carelessly written. Read this article on Kenh14 and you will see why:

For better illustration, look over the comments (figure below) to see that people’s reactions are like yours after reading the post.


Comments kenh14


I really wonder what Mountains Dew’s current objectives are right now. Please excuse me for my direct criticism, this marketing campaign sucks. Even with good sales in the short-term ahead, Mountain Dew certainly leaves some negativity behind. Why such a big brand is doing so poorly? What I am seeing right now is its rich pocket wasting money widely everywhere, and none of which really catches my attention of its quality. Or maybe they are trying to show they are “satisfying their adventurous and heroic gut”, throwing money at the crowd and thinking that is a heroic act. There is something wrong.

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3 Responses to Mountain Dew in Vietnam: What’s wrong with you?

  1. elvie says:

    I couldn’t even hear the name of the brand when watching the tvc. What’s wrong with the pronunciation???


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