How Doritos Crowdsourced Its Advertising Since 2006 #CSReport2015

doritos crowdsourcing illustration

Doritos chips were invented in 1966 by Arch Clark West, a marketing VP at Frito-Lay in the early 1960s, who died at age 97 a couple of years ago (his whose family planned to “sprinkle Doritos at his graveside service“). To see what Dortitos 1.0 looked like, check out the original Doritos pack on the very cool “Vintage Frito-Lay” Pinterest board.

Today, the brand is very famous for its “Crash The Super Bowl” advertising contest, in which it invites filmmakers to create ads that can be selected to be aired during the Big Game. In this post, I’d like to dig deep, very deep into the brand’s crowdsourcing history (you may also check Dan Lamoureux’s blog or the contest’s Wikipedia page). I’ve taken out the Doritos stories from my crowdsourcing timelines (Doritos is not a Best Global Brand) but I want to still share it, so I do it with this blog post, which will end with a reference to my “The State of Crowdsourcing in 2015” trend report available on eYeka.


Download the Crowdsourcing Trend Report 2015

The “Crash The Super Bowl” is running since 2006

Doritos’ First “Crash The Super Bowl” Contest (October to December 2006)

For Super Bowl XLI in February 2007, Doritos launched the "Crash the Super Bowl" contest to allow consumers to create their own Doritos commercial (image via

The logo of the first “Crash the Super Bowl” contest (image via

In the fall of 2006 Frito-Lay (with the help of their ad agency, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners) launched the first “Crash the Super Bowl” contest. Consumers were asked to create 30-second commercials for Doritos products. The strategic challenge was to regain relevance and build awareness within their target (“young adults ages 16-24, who are inclusive, connected and informed”), and the business objectives were to increase sales volume growth by 4% during the program, to generate $ 5million in PR value and… to receive 200 entries.

In all, 1,065 consumer-made ads were submitted and displayed on the contest site, (even though there were a lot of duplicates and repeats, as “Beardy” from notes). From those entries, five ads were selected as finalists. The director of each selected ad received a cash prize of $10,000 and a trip for two to Detroit during Super Bowl XLI in February 2007. The five finalist ads were posted to the contest web site for a month long public vote. The commercial that received the most votes, “Live the Flavor” aired during the 2007 Super Bowl.

Though the five 2006-2007 finalists were flown to Detroit, they did not actually attend the Super Bowl. Instead, they watched the game from a private party near the stadium. In a move that has since become a Crash the Super Bowl tradition, no one, not even the finalists, knew which commercials would air before the game. “Live the Flavor” was the first consumer-generated ad to ever air during the Super Bowl and was ranked the #4 best commercial of the game on the USA Today Ad Meter poll. Later in the game, Frito-Lay surprised the finalists by also airing a second Crash the Super Bowl ad, “Check Out Girl.”

In December 2007, named “Live the Flavor” the 9th best commercial of the year. Frito-Lay’s PR company, Ketchum won a Golden World Award from the International Public Relations Association for their work on the 2006-2007 Crash the Super Bowl contest. According to the IPRA, the competition led to a 12% increase in sales of Doritos in January, 2007 and nearly one million people visited the Crash The Super Bowl website to view the submissions and vote for the finalists. In the months following the Super Bowl, Frito-Lay chose to air all five commercials that had made the Crash the Super Bowl finals. Read more about the results of the campaign on the 2008 Effie Awards results announcement.

Doritos’ Second “Crash The Super Bowl” Contest (October to December 2007)

The second instalment of the contest was a music contest (image via

The second instalment of the contest was a music contest (image via

Frito-Lay launched the second edition of “Crash the Super Bowl” giving aspiring musicians the chance to have their music heard by millions of viewers and receive a record deal with Interscope Geffen A&M Records. Doritos’ second “Crash the Super Bowl” contest, which launched on October 11th 2007, asked people to submit original music for a chance to have their tune aired during Super Bowl XLII on Feb. 3, 2008.

Entrants had to submit videos and audio clips performing their song starting Oct. 25 to On Dec. 10, a panel of judges selected 10 semi-finalists. Consumers in January voted to determine the top three performers. Each performer got $10,000 and a trip to Phoenix to attend the Doritos Super Bowl party. Prior to the game, people voted on the three finalists to determine a winner.

Unlike Doritos’ previous “Crash the Super Bowl” competition, in which people created 30-second spots to air, entries didn’t have to be about the brand, the company said. “We are not looking for the new Doritos jingle, we are looking to entertain the fans we love during the Super Bowl with a great song and a great performance from any genre,” said Ann Mukherjee, vice president, marketing, Frito-Lay, in a statement. Doritos was using the promotion, in part, to appeal to young consumers who have a passion for music.

Crash the Super Bowl is about so much more than just our product and music,” Doritos spokesman Jared Dougherty said. “The brand is all about empowering Doritos lovers and giving them access to the opportunities and experiences they dream about. Turning over our Super Bowl ad time is the best way for us to give Doritos lovers the ultimate stage to be discovered and potentially launch a career.

And the winner was 22-year old Kina Grannis (Mission Viego, CA), who performed her song “Messager From Your Heart.” Frito-Lay purchased 60 seconds of commercial time to run the music video featuring Grannis performing part of her song. Frito-Lay also chose to air one of the 2006-2007 Crash the Super Bowl finalist ads, “Mouse Trap” during the game. Grannis’ performance was seen by 100 million viewers and her song briefly made the Top 30 on itunes. However, Grannis’ music video/commercial was landed at the very bottom of USA Today’s Super Bowl ad meter poll. The 2007 Crash the Super Bowl commercial that Doritos decided to air managed to rank #4 on the ad meter that year.

Doritos’ Third “Crash the Super Bowl” Contest (October to November 2008)

Frito-Lay brought the commercial (video) contest back in the fall of 2008. The challenge was to create the best commercial of Super Bowl XLIII. If a consumer-made Doritos commercial could score the #1 spot on the official USA Today Ad meter poll, Frito-Lay would pay the ad’s creator a one million dollar bonus. 1,961 entries were submitted in the fall of 2008 and five finalists spots were selected in early January. Each finalist received a prize of $25,000 and a trip for two to the Super Bowl. The finalists watched the game from a private box in the stadium.

The winning vote going to the “Free Doritos” ad (see above), which featured an office worker (Comedian Steve Booth) with a snow globe (believing it to be a crystal ball) “predicting” that everyone in the office would get free Doritos, then subsequently throws the snow globe into a vending machine selling nothing but Nacho Cheese & Cool Ranch Doritos. The commercial was ranked by the USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter as the best ad for the year, earning the creators of the ad – Joe and Dave Herbert – a US $1 million prize.

They again aired two ads during the game ads and the second place ad also placed in the top five according to USA Today. This ad featured a guy who discovers that each crunch from his bag of Doritos causes whatever is on his mind to become reality (until he runs out of chips). Another popular commercial from the group of finalist included an executive making a presentation to other executives on a new (fictional) Doritos flavor called “Doritos Beer”, which, as the name implies, is beer-flavored Doritos, with each chip containing as much alcohol as an equivalent of a 16 ounce can of beer. The executive making the presentation, eating the beer-flavored chips, ends up drunk on the chips and is down to his underwear and a tie by the end of the commercial.

For Super Bowl XLIV, four ads were entered, and if three of the commercials sweep the top three positions in that year’s Ad Meter contest, all of the creators would be awarded a total of US $5 million, broken down as $1 million for first place, $600,000 for second and $400,000 for third, plus each maker would get an additional $1 million.

Doritos’ Fourth “Crash The Super bowl” Contest (October to December 2009)

The fourth installment of the contest encouraged fans to "Take the Top 3" spots on the USA Today Ad meter poll (image via

The logo of the fourth installment of the contest (image via

Doritos ran Crash the Super Bowl for the fourth time in 2010, drawing a crowd of prospective copywriters, art directors, directors and producers. Six finalists have been chosen from the 4000 entries, and three of them will be aired during the 2010 Super Bowl, based on public voting up to January 31.

For the 4th edition, bonus prizes of $1,000,000, $600,000 and $400,000 were offered if a filmmakers scored the number one, two or three spot on the poll. If three Crash the Super Bowl commercials swept the top three spots on the ad meter, each team would receive an additional bonus of one million dollars.

In the end, six consumer-made ads were selected for the finals and each finalist received a prize of $25,000 plus a trip for two to the Super Bowl.

  • Snack Attack Samurai by Ben Krueger of Minneapolis, MN. (Aired during the Super Bowl).
  • The Smackout by Brendan Hayward of Santa Monica, CA.
  • Casket by Kevin Wilson of Whittier, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl)
  • House Rules by Joelle De Jesus of Los Angeles, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl)
  • Underdog by Five Points Productions of Cary, NC. (Aired during the Super Bowl and winner of the $600,000 Bonus)
  • Kids These Days by Nick Dimondi of Cary, NC

Frito-Lay ultimately decided to air 4 of the 6 finalist commercials during Super Bowl 44. The Crash the Super Bowl spot “UnderDog” was ranked the second best commercial on the USA Today ad Meter so the team that made that entry won a bonus of $600,000.

Doritos’ Fifth “Crash the Super Bowl” Contest (September to November 2010)


On September, Frito-Lay announced that Pepsi Max was joining Doritos for the 2010-2011 installment of the annual contest. Marking the fifth anniversary of the contest that changed the Super Bowl advertising landscape, the Doritos brand launched the “biggest, most unexpected Crash the Super Bowl so far.” With an ad contract and a $5 million payout on the line for sweeping the top three rankings of the USA TODAY Ad Meter, the contest offered an unprecedented six :30 Super Bowl ad spots for consumer-created commercials.

That year, Doritos invited sibling brand Pepsi MAX to the program, each brand airing three :30 consumer-created ads during the Super Bowl XLV broadcast, Feb. 6, 2011 on FOX.

Following last year’s Super Bowl, our fans wanted another shot at sweeping the top of the USA TODAY Ad Meter and challenged us to look for new ways they could demonstrate their abilities at the highest level,” said Rudy Wilson, vice president, Frito-Lay. “We answered by bringing Crash the Super Bowl back and stocking our arsenal in a way nobody expected – by partnering with Pepsi MAX to offer six spots to consumers to showcase their talents and make their dreams a reality.

We are excited to return to the Super Bowl this year to drive mass awareness that Pepsi MAX has Zero Calories and maximum taste through a consumer engagement program like Crash the Super Bowl. We believe that great ideas can come from anywhere and we’re excited to give Pepsi MAX fans the chance to showcase their creative talents on one of the world’s biggest stages,” said Lauren Hobart, CMO Sparkling Beverages, PepsiCo Beverages America. “With our colleagues at Doritos, we’re confident fans of both brands will put it all on the line this year and that the experience will help catapult their careers in many new and exciting ways.

Ten finalist ads were announced in January 2011 – five Doritos ads and five Pepsi MAX ads. Then it was up to fans to vote for their favorite ads online and determine two winning Doritos spots and two winning Pepsi MAX spots. In addition, Doritos and Pepsi MAX executives each selected a winning spot for each brand, for a total of six consumer-created spots to air during the Super Bowl XLV broadcast. Each of the 10 finalists won $25,000 and a trip to Dallas to attend Super Bowl XLV in a private luxury suite at the game, where they tuned in to learn for the first time which ads won when they air for a worldwide audience.

The Doritos finalists were:

  • Adam and Eve by Stephen Schuster of Topanga, CA.
  • Best Part by Tyler Dixon of Lehi, Utah (Aired during the Super Bowl)
  • Birthday Wish by Heather Kasprzak of Los Angeles, CA.
  • House Sitting by Tynesha Williams of Santa Monica, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl).
  • Pug Attack by JR Burningham of Burbank, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl and winner of the million dollar Bonus).

The Pepsi Max finalists were:

  • Elevator Girl by Michael Doneger of Los Angeles, CA
  • First Date by Nick Simotas of Anaheim, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl)
  • Love Hurts by Brad Bosley of Los Angeles, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl and winner of a $400,000 Bonus).
  • Torpedo Cooler by Brendan Hayward of Santa Monica, CA. (Aired during the Super Bowl).
  • Zero Calories? Psshh by Brandy Gill of Orlando, FL

Three commercials for each product then aired during the 2011 Super Bowl. The Doritos’ commercial “Pug Attack” tied for first place on the USA Today Ad Meter poll and its creator received a one million dollar bonus from Frito-Lay. The Doritos the Super Bowl ad “House Sitting” came in third on the Ad Meter poll and the creator of that spot won a bonus of $400,000. See more here.

Doritos’ Sixth “Crash the Super Bowl” Contest (October to November 2011)

The finalists (image via

The finalists (image via

Doritos ran “Crash the Super Bowl” for the sixth year in a row in 2011 (spots to be aired during Super Bowl in 2012), soliciting consumer-created commercials and calling for public votes. After a record-setting submission phase and review of more than 6,100 entries in that year’s “Crash the Super Bowl” contest, Doritos brand revealed the five finalists who competed for the chance to have their ads aired during the Super Bowl XLVI broadcast on Feb. 5, 2012 on NBC. The finalists are:

  • Bird of Prey by Joby Harris of Los Angeles, CA.
  • Dog Park by Tyler Dixon of Liegh, UT.
  • Hot Wild Girls by Brad Scott of Denver, CO.
  • Man’s Best Friend by Jonathan Friedman of Virginia Beach, VA.
  • Sling Baby by Kevin T. Willson of Los Angeles, CA.

Each of the five finalist ad makers won $25,000 and a trip to Indianapolis to attend the Super Bowl. The Doritos brand was also putting a cash bonus prize of up to $1 million on the line if a consumer-created Doritos ad scoring in the top three spots on either the traditional USA TODAY Ad Meter or the USA TODAY Facebook Super Bowl Ad Meter.

In addition to these prizes, Doritos also offered offering another grand prize: an opportunity to work on a future Doritos brand project with the award-winning The Lonely Island trio of Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone. Through its partnership with the Doritos brand, The Lonely Island first set out to create a Doritos Super Bowl ad of its own, but after seeing the unprecedented consumer enthusiasm around this year’s contest and the creativity would-be ad makers brought to the table, The Lonely Island then announced it would help Doritos fans pursue their Hollywood dreams by turning over its 30-second slot of Super Bowl airtime to one of the five consumer finalists. this is why this edition was called the “Hollywood Edition.”

We’ve been truly impressed with the creativity and passion of people entering the contest,” said Samberg, Schaffer and Taccone. “What drew us to partnering with Doritos for this program was the opportunity to help someone pursue their career dreams and open up a door of opportunity, and we felt that there was no better way to demonstrate that than by helping another talented up-and-comer get his or her big shot.

The Lonely Island guys are a class act, and they have embraced what this contest is about beyond our expectations,” said Tony Matta, VP, Marketing. “Their generosity will now create a life-changing opportunity for two of our consumers, and we plan to pay that forward by making a donation of $250,000 to the charity The Lonely Island was competing for, the Berkeley Unified School District.

Kevin Willson’s ad — which showed a grandmother sling-shotting a baby across a yard to nab a bag of chips from a taunting kid — won the USA TODAY/Facebook online voting, which closed Tuesday evening, with an average score of 4.33 on a scale of one to five. Jonathan Friedman’s commercial — which featured a murderous Great Dane who bribes a human with Doritos to not tell on him for burying a dead cat — was the favorite of the Super Sunday panel of 286 adults in McLean, Va., and Phoenix who used handheld meters to chart their reactions to game ads. The panelists’ average rating was 8.82 out of 10.

“Beardy” from noted on his blog that 3 of the 5 finalists were made my people who wrote, directed or produced previous Crash the Super Bowl finalist spots, discrediting the “amateyr” aspect of the contest. This issue is also raised by academic Daren Brabham in a paper called “The Myth of Amateur Crowds: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Crowdsourcing Coverage.” It seems that crowdsourcing contests like the annual Crash The Super Bowl contest are not really amateur competitions anymore.

Doritos’ Seventh “Crash The Super Bowl” Contest (September to November 2012)

Doritos announced return of the 2012-2013 season of Crash the Super Bowl  (image via

Doritos announced the return of the 2012-2013 season of Crash the Super Bowl on Facebook (image via

On September 5th 2012, Doritos’ Facebook status update said “BIG NEWS! Crash the Super Bowl is BACK. This marks the 7th straight year of hilarious Super Bowl commercials created by you guys. It’s definitely our favorite part of the game. Check back here on September 19 for more details and some even bigger news.

Like in the majority of past editions, Doritos is the only brand to be involved in the Crash The Super Bowl Contest. But in 2012, PepsiCo’s brand teamed up with one of Hollywood’s most successful directors, Michael Bay, who directed the Transformers saga. The “consumer” who creates the top-ranked Doritos commercial aired during the Super Bowl — as determined by USA TODAY’S Ad Meter consumer poll of best-liked Super Bowl commercials — wins the chance to work with Bay on the next installment of the Transformers movie franchise, to be filmed in 2013.

Michael Bay advises aspiring filmmakers to “do a good piece of work, and start to show it around however you can. There are lots of ways to get your work out there through YouTube and all that, and people can see it very quickly,” Bay said, pointing out, “That’s a plus now versus when I started.” If you do good work, you will get noticed, he insists. “The cream always rises to the top,” Bay explained.

Another originality of this edition is that the entire contest will take place on facebook, as Beardy from VCN notes. Also, for the first time ever, Doritos will be awarding bonus prizes to some entries as part of something they call the “Nacho Average Ad Awards.” Facebook users can vote for their favorite Nacho nominees once a day until December 17th. Five finalists for the Crash the Super Bowl contest were announced in January 2013. Then, fans voted online for their favorites.

On December 28th 2012, Beardy from Video Contest News shared some of his favorite entries and underlined that Doritos only got about 2,800 entries, compared to 6,000+ the previous year here’s one possible explanation). On January 4th 2013, Doritos revealed their 5 finalists for the 2012-2013 installment of the Crash the Super Bowl contest. The announcement came in the form of a video hosted by the “Doritos Girl” Ali Landry. The 2013 winners are:

  1. Goat 4 Sale by Ben Callner of Atlanta, Georgia
  2. Road Chip by Tyler Dixon of Los Angeles, California
  3. Fashionista Daddy by Mark Freiburger of Los Angeles, California
  4. Express Checkout by Sasha Shemirani of San Diego, California
  5. Fetch by Joe Taranto of Los Angeles, California

Voting was open until January 29th 2013, and the winner was “Goat 4 Sale,” with 1,216,333 facebook views (against 1,002,366 for the runner up Fashionista Daddy). See more about the winners here.

PepsiCo’s Eigths “Crash The Super Bowl” Contest (October to November 2013)


For the eight year, PepsiCo’s Doritos invited consumers to compete to have their own Doritos ads air in front of a television audience of millions during Super Bowl XLVIII, the pinnacle of television advertising. Making that year bigger than ever, fans from all around the world were able to compete and one winner would be guaranteed to win $1 million in prize money! Additionally, the year’s winners would have the opportunity to work with Marvel Studios on the set of “Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron.”

As always, the brief was to create a :30-second Super Bowl-worthy spot for Doritos to compete.

  • The Grand Prize was a $1,000,000 cash, a trip to Rutherford, NJ to attend the 2014 Super Bowl alongside Doritos, and of course the creator’s ad played during the 2014 Super Bowl. The director of this ad would also receive the opportunity to team up with Marvel on the set of “Marvel’s The Avengers: Age of Ultron.”
  • The Second Place was a $50,000 cash, a trip to Rutherford, NJ to attend the 2014 Super Bowl alongside Doritos, and the ad played during the 2014 Super Bowl. The director of this ad would also receive the opportunity to team up with Marvel on the set of “Marvel’s The Avengers: Age of Ultron.”
  • The Third, Fourth and Fifth Place prizes were $25,000 cash and a trip to Rutherford, NJ to attend the 2014 Super Bowl alongside Doritos.

That year’s novely was that Crash The Super Bowl VIII was open to international entrants who were residents of countries where Doritos are sold, age 18 and older. “Incredible content has no geographical boundaries,” said Ann Mukherjee, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division. “As a brand that spans 46 countries on six continents, we know firsthand that regardless of where our fans are located, they are all about seizing the moment and making an impact in the boldest way possible. With Crash the Super Bowl, we’re now delivering an unprecedented opportunity for fans around the globe to share their talent and creativity on one of the world’s largest advertising stages.

The press release explained that the worldwide expansion of the Crash the Super Bowl contest comes as the filmmaking community continues to build its global footprint, with aspiring directors and artists around the world seeking opportunities to break into the entertainment business and make their mark. “With top-ranked film schools located in cities, such as Beijing, Sydney, Munich and Prague, an abundance of cinematic talent is coming from every corner of the globe,” it said. You may also read my interview of Chris Kuechenmeister, Senior Director of Public Relations at Frito-Lay North America.

A panel of judges, including executives from the Doritos brand, advertising professionals and Stan Lee of Pow! Entertainment — chairman emeritus of Marvel Studios and creator of such Super Heroes as Iron Man™, Spider-Man™ and others — selected five finalist ads. From there, the world was invited to vote for their favorite. In December 2013, PepsiCo announced 24 finalists. Just before the new year, VCN predicted 5 possible winners on his blog.

On January 3rd, CTSB’s 2014 finalists were revealed:

– “Time Machine” by Ryan Andersen, Scottsdale, Arizona, United States

– “Office Thief” by Chris Capel, Valencia, California, United States

– “The Cowboy Kid” by Amber Gill, Ladera Ranch, California, United States

– “Breakroom Ostrich” by Eric Haviv, Atlanta, Georgia, United States

– “Finger Cleaner” by Thomas Noakes, Sydney, Australia

The latter was the most expensive to produce (7,000$). As VCN reported, FritoLay released the budgets for all five “amateur” commercials that made the 2014 Crash the Super Bowl finals. As always, the ads that made the Top 5 had pretty hefty budgets. Finger Cleaner was not only the most expensive submission of the 7th edition, but it was the most expensive Crash the Super Bowl finalist EVER! “True “amateur” productions have pretty much zero chance of making the Crash the Super Bowl finals,” VCN concluded. The entire Internet was rooting for Finger Cleaner but ultimately the winners were Time Machine and Cowboy Kid.

Ryan Thomas Anderson of Scottsdale, Arizona was indeed the official winner of the 2014 Crash the Super Bowl contest and he’s taking home the million dollar grand prize. And as a bonus, both he and the creator of Cowboy Kid, Amber Gill, have been offered jobs working on the new Avengers movie. Here’s a clip of Ryan getting the good news on Good Morning America (and here is a Vine of it).

Doritos also has held sporadic video contests here and there

Pepsico’s “You Make It, We Play It” Contest (March 2008)

In March 2008, doritos diyPepsico’s brand Doritos launched a campaign to task individuals to create 30-second spots… the winner was eventually beamed into space! Created by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and OMD UK for Doritos, the contest asked creatives in the UK to create an ad for the chips. The prize was £20.000 and having the spot aired in the United Kingdom, among other smaller prizes.

Contestants had to upload their spots to the competition’s Youtube channel. At the end of the contest, Paul&Mike claimed that with over 1300 ads submitted, Doritos became the second most popular Youtube brand channel of all time (2008). Pepsico’s website indeed talks about 1,300 entries here, but another press release states that “almost 900” videos had been received… anyway.

The winner was the video “Doritos Tribe” created by Matt Bowron & John Addis from Highbury, London. The stop motion video was selected by public vote and was premiered on ITV1 as a solus ad break during a Euro 2008 match on Sunday June 15, 2008. The Guardian described this ad as “perhaps the cheapest TV ad ever” in an article on June 2008.

This advertising campaign is also known to be the first advertisement to have been broadcasted into space, with the spot having been beamed into a planetary system 42 light years away. The project was conducted in collaboration with EISCAT Space Center in Svalbard, Norway, and the University of Leicester, UK. The ad was beamed towards a distant star within the Ursa Major constellation that is orbited by planets “which may harbor life.”

Peter Charles, head of the Doritos Broadcast Project, said: “We are constantly looking to push the boundaries of advertising and this will go further than any brand has gone before. By broadcasting the winning ad to the Universe, Doritos is delivering a world first and Matt Bowron, the winner, will go down in advertising folklore.

Pepsico’s “Doritos King of Ads” Contest (February to April 2010)

Doritos was giving away up to £200,000 to whoever would make the next Doritos TV ad (image via

Doritos was giving away up to £200,000 to whoever would make the next Doritos TV ad (image via

With the help of Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, Pepsico launched the 2010 season of “Doritos – King of Ads” in February 2010, a contest offering film makers (professional and amateur) a chance to win up to £200,000 in prize money as well as fame in the UK.

Everyone aged over 18 and living in the UK and the Republic of Ireland was eligible to enter. Entries had to be 29 seconds long, preferably shot in 16:9 perspective, and uploaded to (which is not online anymore) before 30th April 2010.

The winning advert would win £100k, and an extra £1 for each vote they receive – up to £200k, before airing in the UK during June 12 to July 11, 2010. The competition also provided prizes for the top 100, top 50 and top 15 advertisements. Judging was based on the following criteria:

  • How original is the idea? (40%)
  • How engaging is the execution? (30%)
  • Has the creator adhered to the brief? (30%)

Before the contest, Pete Charles, Marketing Manager, Doritos, said: “This is an incredible opportunity for anyone wanting to make a name for themselves in the world of advertising or earn a life changing amount of money. In true Doritos style your adverts can be as bold, left field or as funny as you can make them – good luck!

At the end of the contest, Doritos claimed to have received over 3,000 entries in the 12 week period (even though some articles talk only about 2,000 entries), resulting in some 425.000 video views on Doritos King of Ads’ YouTube channel. Jury member and Bafta winner Noel Clarke said: “The standard of entries was incredible and the contestants really took on the Doritos brief and had a lot of fun with it. The public are going to love the final three ads and I can’t begin to predict who’s going to win – it’s entirely up to the British public.

Online public then voted on the top three between May 19 and June 10, encouraged by promotional packs launched in stores by Pepsico. See the fifteen shortlisted ads here. The top 15 videomakers were invited to pitch their ideas to a panel of experts and celebrities, including Lauren Laverne, David Shane and Noel Clarke.

After that, three finalists were selected by this jury (see the three finalists here) and another phase of voting was organized.To promote this voting phase, Doritos also showcased the three finalists alongside the Doritos “Giant Living Room” in London. The stunt was aimed at driving the public to vote for their favorite ad between the three final contestants. The winner of the competition wins 200,000 Pounds and have their advertisement aired on British television. Eventually, the winner was Craig Young with his video “Attack of Westminster.” (Director: Craig Young, DP: Tim Sutton, Producer: Grant Cummings). The spot shows an alien structure stationed over the City of Westminster.

Jon Kyle, Walkers Impulse Sales Director said: “The public have responded fantastically to our ‘King of Ads’ campaign and retailers have been capitalising on sales by stocking up on the great tasting range and maxisiming visibility through using engaging POS on their main fixtures as well as in secondary locations such as beers, wines and spirits. We expect sales to continue to grow as the campaign builds to its climax with the screening of the overall ‘King of Ads’ on national TV.”

PepsiCo’s “Doritos Bold” Contest on eYeka (January to March 2014)


PepsiCo’s Doritos brand launched a contest on eYeka, asking filmmakers to submit “surprising videos with a viral potential featuring people doing something BOLD” that Doritos could sponsor. “Today, Doritos is inviting you to express yourself on any topic they could sponsor… anything that you find BOLD,” the brief explained.

Your video does not need to feature Doritos or even mention the brand. It does however have to be related to youth (Doritos fans are aged between 16 and 24) and refer to something that is BOLD. It can be music, sports, street art, video gaming and technology… anything that Doritos could potentially sponsor. Your video should be appealing, dynamic and fully exclusive and have a potential to go viral.” The brand said that the best videos would be posted on Doritos’s YouTube channel in Mexico, which has a wide audience of nearly 4 million viewers.

Winners were announced on April 17th, and creatives from France, the USA and Mexico were rewarded. “We would like to thank all the participants; we liked your videos a lot, but unfortunately we can only choose 3. Best luck in the next one!” Doritos said.

Pepsico’s “Doritos Social Moments” Contest on eYeka (April to May 2014)

Doritos asked for  creative, entertaining and potentially viral video that features people doing something BOLD (image via eYeka)

Doritos asked for creative, entertaining and potentially viral video that features people doing something BOLD (image via eYeka)

Doritos tasked eYeka community members to submit creative, entertaining and potentially viral video that features people doing something BOLD along with others, to create a positive movement or impact. “The world needs boldness! Doritos wants to be the spark to happy and social moments for bold people, in order to have a positive impact on other people’s lives. Today, Doritos is inviting you to express yourself and to show how an action performed with others, for others, can be bold and sponsored by the brand Doritos.

The brand wanted creatives to surprise thme with a creative, entertaining and potentially viral video that features people doing something BOLD along with others, to create a positive movement or impact. The results were announced, and winning videos came from Australia, Ukraine and Mexico.

Doritos has built extensive experience in crowdsourcing, what’s next?

So this is quite an extensive list of Doritos’ advertising contests in the last years. In a previous post, I shared the overall open innovation efforts of PepsiCo as well as the potential “next step” that Doritos seems to take with the Legion Of The Bold platform. I’m not in a position to predict where it’s heading, but I think that it is always useful to look into the past, and here it shows that Doritos has consumer participation in its brand DNA. What about the other FMCG companies and brands? P&G and Unilever are still leading the pack in terms of crowdsourcing usage today:

The crowdsourcing usage of 10 leading FMCG companies (click to see more by donwloading the report on eYeka)

The crowdsourcing usage of 10 leading FMCG companies (click to see more by downloading the report)

Note that this result is based on a particular method, explained in the report, which doesn’t take the above Doritos contests into account. If you are looking for more insights into crowdsourcing, its evolution, or the platforms that facilitate it, don’t hesitate to go download the full report on our website. You can also read a preview inforaphic on Slideshare. And if you are keen to engage ni a conversation about the topic, join the discussion in the comments section below, or by using #CSreport2015 on social media.

Download eYeka’s crowdsourcing trend report now:

Download the Crowdsourcing Trend Report


  1. […] Crowdsourcing combines the two words “crowds” and “outsourcing”, this is where crowds of people are used to gather their public intelligence to help with tasks that would have otherwise been limited or outsourced (Prepare Center 2017?). Documentation of crowdsourcing goes all the way back to 1714 when the British government offered a £20,000 reward to anyone who could solve the ‘longitude-problem’ (Riccardi 2016, p. 123). Crowdsourcing can also be used in circumstances where businesses need designs for new products,  innovative tech solutions, or campaign ideas.  […]


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