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Coke, Yahoo Steal Thunder From Live Earth’s Sponsors

Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Yahoo, and MSN have the highest awareness of any brands in connection with the upcoming Live Earth concerts, according to new research from Lightspeed Research and the Ethical Reputation Index. That’s great for Coke and Yahoo, which beat or tied their main rivals and aren’t sponsors of the event.

The news gets worse for Pepsi. Some 19 percent of the 500 Australians canvassed thought Coke was a sponsor – eight percentage points more than Pepsi, the Sydney Morning Herald reports. Awareness of Pepsi’s role was higher among US and UK respondents, with the final result a tie between the two rivals at 19 percent.

The survey results point to most companies not creating pre-event buzz for their roles. Forty-nine percent of survey respondents couldn’t point to one of the sponsors.

Other companies wrongly nominated as sponsors were Samsung (nine percent), BMW (nine percent).

MSN, which will stream the concerts at LiveEarth.MSN.com, launched a host of promotions, including earth-friendly premiums and sweepstakes, to raise awareness of its role, Promo reports.

But the timing coincides with a green marketing push by Yahoo that includes its own green site and the announcement that it would become “carbon neutral” by the end of 2007. It seems, at least in terms of the survey, that Yahoo’s green push has trumped MSN’s.

Coke has also been involved in a number of high profile green moves, including its $20 million freshwater conservation project, which could, in part, explain the survey results.

Here’s how the other sponsors ended up:

Who do you think is sponsoring Live Earth?
49% Don’t know
19% Pepsi (S)
19% Coca cola
19% Yahoo
17% MSN (S)
15% Philips (S)
12% SMART (S)
10% Stonyfield Farms (S)
  9% Samsung
  9% BMW

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