For its fourth annual Creative Challenge, Pepsi aimed to build on the successes of previous years and engage over 30 million Chinese in the competition. To mark China's 60th anniversary, the challenge for entrants was to express their aspirations for their homeland by completing the sentence: "China, I wish you..." in no more than 60 characters.
Previous Creative Challenges have seen Pepsi test the Chinese public with a variety of tasks. The inaugural Creative Challenge in 2006 asked consumers to create a 200 word script for an ad featuring Taiwanese superstar Jay Chou. In subsequent years, consumers were asked to send in photos to win the chance of appearing on a Pepsi can. Each time the public has voted for the eventual winner and each year the number of people entering has increased.
Aiming to make this its biggest year yet, Pepsi partnered with Chinese internet services giant, Tencent. Users can upload their 60 character sentiments via three of China's most popular websites: TaoTao - equivalent to Twitter, QQ - China's MSN, with a 78% market share and QZone, the world's largest social networking site. As in previous years, consumers can vote for their favourites with the most popular wishes displayed on a dedicated Pepsi portal. A Creativity Map allows users to see which regions of China are the most enthusiastic participants and every entrant can have their own creativity assessed instantly by a Creativity Meter.
Pepsi initially hoped to have 30 million entries, but by the end of September, Pepsi received almost 34 million entries - an increase of almost 6 million from the previous year. The ten most popular wishes as selected by the public will feature in a Pepsi ad in 2010. Some 60 runners-up will receive a T-shirt designed by the lead vocalist of one of China's biggest rock bands, May Day.
The site received 22 million unique visitors, who on average spent 2.5 minutes on the site. In total 11.3 million votes were cast. The winning wish, from Hubei, gained close to 200,000 votes.