I thought this Onion report was very funny and like all really good satire points to a truth that some may find uncomfortable. I urge you to enjoy the whole thing before reading the next few paras.
Consider some of the statements the Onion puts in the mouth of the Pepsi Boss:
“Frankly it just feels sort of weird and desperate to put all this energy into telling people what to drink. If they don’t like it, then they don’t like it.”
“Look, Coca-Cola is a terrific product,” Nooyi continued. “Millions of people choose it over Pepsi every day. Are those people wrong? Of course not. Concepts like ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ shouldn’t even apply. It’s a soft drink.”
These are pretty sane and sensible things to say… the hilarity is that, of course, a Pepsi boss could never acknowledge these truths.
Of course, vast marketing hierarchies a have a strong interest in maintaining the status quo. Too much Onion really would bring them to tears.
But there may be some smaller businesses that would do very well to use the Onion strategy. Run one last farewell ad, hack huges costs out of flim flam promotion and bet the ranch on actually delivering good stuff and services that people will want to talk about.