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Special Project

Special Project
From the 16th Annual Shorty Awards

LAY’S Welcomes The GOAT (Messi) with Goats

Entered in Real Time Response


PepsiCo’s goal is to establish itself as an essential element of the North American soccer viewing ritual, for both existing fans and new fans falling in love with this rapidly growing sport. With more than four billion soccer fans around the globe, PepsiCo tapped into one of the most widespread and passionate fanbases in sports following the arrival of Lionel Messi to the United States.

Messi is widely regarded as one of if not the Greatest Of All Time (G.O.A.T) by fans and experts alike. Since his announcement of joining Inter Miami came to light back in July 2023, the celebratory mood hasn’t stopped for fans of the game. Whether you are a soccer fan or not, Americans have been hyped about the GOAT’s arrival.

Notably during his first-ever Inter Miami debut, Messi delivered an unforgettable free kick giving his team a 2-1 win over Mexican club Cruz Azul in a Leagues Cup match. With this, Messi reached the mark of 808 goals in his career as a professional player.

Following yet another one of Messi’s career-defining moments, PepsiCo saw an opportunity to not only break through culture in a fun way but elevate the joy of soccer for all fans of the game.

Strategy and Execution

Being able to keep up with and respond to the trends that fans are following in real time is just as important as the extensive campaigns PepsiCo spends months developing. Gen Z for instance, is all about instant gratification. Identifying ways to authentically activate in real-time across the different platforms they value without compromising the integrity of the work is a big challenge – but PepsiCo was up for it.

This same mentality directly relates to how the brand expands its presence to meet consumers where they’re at to authentically capture their attention and loyalty. 

With a natural connection to the GOAT (the brand previously featured him in a TV advertisement and put Messi’s face on limited-edition chip bags to celebrate the UEFA Champions League) the potato chip brand knew they needed to jump in on the excitement. And what better way to welcome the GOAT than with 808 actual goats representing each one of Messi’s goals throughout his career?

Using creative storytelling to influence culture and bring real joy to fans of the brand, PepsiCo’s in-house agency D3, took on the job and spearheaded the social content creation and campaign execution. The 30-second video revealed a farmer shepherding 807 (mostly CGI) goats—one for each of Messi’s career goals—out into a field to form Messi’s face to the tune of the unofficial anthem for Argentine soccer.

This content went live just before Messi’s first game and memorable goal in Miami. So, naturally, a new version was released with an extra goat to match the (then 808) goals from Messi throughout his career.

The campaign also furthered a larger multi-year strategy of making PepsiCo products go hand-in-hand with soccer, making the products a part of the fandom’s excitement and joy around the sport.


In less than 21 days this went from an idea pitched over text message to the PepsiCo US CMO to three pieces of content garnering 12 MILLION Total Impressions, 8.4 MILLION Total Video Views, 34.4K Followers Gained and an almost 10% Average Video View Rate across platforms.

With a brand well positioned in the world of sports, and most importantly soccer, tapping into the strength of Messi fandom in an authentic and unique way was key. Social-first cuts geared towards the strength of each social channel proved to be a success. For example, the short form on TikTok that started with an engaging hook performed 28X stronger than all other versions on that channel.

Media outlets and influencers shared the spot, garnering 3.4MM impressions and 80K engagements organically, with Lay’s comment on the post alone garnering 34K impressions and 3K engagements!

The content resonated with a global audience, with users even translating the spot into various languages. 

With just 12 days between filming and going live, the Goats for the GOAT content from Lay’s not only captured the heart of Messi and soccer fans, but it’s paid off BIG time in terms of social performance. 


Video for LAY’S Welcomes The GOAT (Messi) with Goats

Entrant Company / Organization Name

D3 (PepsiCo Foods North America), LAY’S


Entry Credits