The art of marketing is convincing people they need or want something they didn’t know they needed or wanted.

Our friends at Pepsi are rolling out a new lemon-lime soda called Starry, which replaces its lemon-lime soda Sierra Mist, which never managed to gain traction against the market leader for lemon-lime sodas, Coke’s Sprite.

What’s striking, though, is how Pepsi is spinning its new take on a familiar product.

The company says internal research shows that “demand for lemon-lime flavored soda has never been greater.”

Really? The pandemic left me hankering for all sorts of missed experiences. Lemon-lime soda wasn’t one of them.

Pepsi says its flavor mavens set about reinventing this much-desired beverage so they could give consumers “a choice in an area that’s been dominated by one brand for years.”

They mean Sprite. And before Sprite became the Cadillac of lemon-lime thirst quenchers, 7-Up presumably was the lemon-lime drink to beat.

Spin aside, Pepsi is seemingly frustrated that no one really took to its Sierra Mist concoction over the last quarter-century.

Hence Starry, which presumably is a lot like Sierra Mist except, according to Pepsi, it has “higher citrus flavors that are true to fruit and more aromatic.”

Which begs the question: Why didn’t they just rejigger Sierra Mist to give it “higher citrus flavors”?

OK, OK, I’m overthinking things.

Pepsi has Sprite envy and the company is taking steps to remedy its condition.

Caffeine-free Starry is available in regular and sugar-free versions.

And Pepsi aims to find those finicky Gen Z soda drinkers by marketing heavily on social media.

Because demand for lemon-lime has never been greater. In case you didn’t know.