PLANO, Texas, Feb. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- This February, Diet Dr Pepper, the fastest growing diet drink in America, wants consumers to fall in love with its great taste -- and is doing everything possible to put more than 250 million samples in their hands. The Diet Dr Pepper National Sampling Blitz is one of the largest beverage sampling initiatives ever, blanketing the country with enough free full-size cans, fountain drinks and other giveaways for every person in America. During the month, Diet Dr Pepper will be popping up in some expected and unexpected places. Free product samples and coupons will be distributed through traditional retail partners and high-profile events, including: * Free Diet Dr Pepper Fountain Day at 7-Eleven stores on Feb. 10 * Celebrity gift bags at the Grammy Awards * Supermarket sampling and coupons with partners around the country * Special promotions with retail partners Target and Wal-Mart * Product coupons mailed to everyone in America named "Pepper" * High-profile professional and college basketball festivities in February Valentine's Day will be a special day during the month-long blitz as Hollywood sweetheart Nicole Richie will help New Yorkers fall in love with Diet Dr Pepper at events throughout the city. In addition, a team of Diet Dr Pepper Sweethearts will hand out free product samples in six cities across the country. "There's nothing diet about Diet Dr Pepper and we are doing everything we can to help America judge it themselves," said Andrew Springate, vice president, Dr Pepper Brand Marketing. "Once people experience its rich, indulgent taste, they forget they're enjoying a diet soda. It's that good." The nationwide sampling effort is supported by a new advertising campaign that began in January. In a departure from conventional diet soft drink ads, the campaign compares the rich, decadent flavor of Diet Dr Pepper to indulgent desserts. The advertising tagline, "There's Nothing Diet About It," reminds people that while the calories are missing, the flavor is full. In the two television spots titled "Gumball" and "Housekeeper," the hit song, "Help Yourself," sung by recently knighted Sir Tom Jones, is featured with traditional indulgences such as gumballs, cakes and candy unexpectedly replaced with Diet Dr Pepper. The third spot featuring Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr Pepper will air in March. Recent trends in the diet soda category suggest that while diet drinks are growing in popularity, none is more popular than Diet Dr Pepper, which is growing at twice the rate of other diet sodas. In 2004, sales of Diet Dr Pepper increased 16 percent, and in 2005, following the launch of Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr Pepper, sales increased 15 percent. About Diet Dr Pepper Diet Dr Pepper is a leading brand in the beverage portfolio of Plano, Texas-based Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages (CSAB), a subsidiary division of Cadbury Schweppes plc (NYSE: CSG). CSAB is one of the largest producers of teas, juices and soft drinks in the Americas with a brand portfolio that includes Dr Pepper, 7 UP, Snapple, Mott's Apple Juice, RC Cola, A&W Root Beer, Sunkist, Canada Dry, Hawaiian Punch, Schweppes, Diet Rite, Clamato, Mr & Mrs T's Mixers, Holland House Mixers, Rose's, Mistic, Yoo-hoo, Orangina, IBC, Stewart's, Nantucket Nectars and other well-known consumer brands. For additional information, visit http://www.cadburyschweppes.com/csab .
SOURCE Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages