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Coca Cola: Inspiring digital marketing campaigns

If you are Coca-Cola fan then you would have definitely noticed the notable successes in their digital marketing campaigns over the years. So, I decided to round-up 3 of my favorite campaigns and share them with you to inspire you, just as they inspired me.

Share a Coca-Cola campaign
Love is sharing right? Well, Coca Cola kicked off a brilliant ‘share a coke’ campaign, offering the chance to its fans to swap the coke brand name with their own and share the experience with others. This campaign is a testament that digital marketing should be integrated in the marketing mix, and can offer more value for money, especially if combined with the other traditional forms of marketing.



According to analyst David Porche, 45% of consumer sentiment has been favorable toward the campaign, according to its data from June to July 2014. "The campaign also commanded an unusually large number of shares on social media", he says.

"There was a Facebook app last year which created a virtual customized can and was really successful," says Drew Burdon, executive strategy director at agency R/GA, which has been working alongside Coca-Cola on some of the digital aspects of the campaign. "This year Coke has doubled its investment, and what it's trying to do is connect with consumers."

"The campaign was originally trialed back in 2011, resulting in a 7% increase in sales. It also earned a total of more than 18 million media impressions, and traffic on the Coke Facebook site increased by 870%, with page ‘likes’ growing by 39%". Reported David Moth of Econsultancy, August 2013.

Just Dance now mobile campaign
Coca-Cola launched a mobile game branded ‘Just Dance Now’ that because an instant hit and spread around the world. The game required players to scan Coke cans to unlock special content and activities inside the game; showing clearly the growing trend of global brands attempting to piggy-bag the gaming world.



For the launch of the campaign / game, Coca-Cola created an interactive “Dance Off installation” using the mobile game against the Les Twins. The event took place in the heart of Paris at Place St Lazare in September 15th 2014 and gave people the opportunity to experience for the first time the new mobile version of Just Dance and dance to the new Coca Cola song “Find Your Move”.
Members of the public were joined by exclusive Coca Cola guests, the internationally acclaimed French dance duo, Les Twins in partnership with DanceOn Network.

Check out the event here:




The Coca-Cola Happiness Machine
 


The Coca-Cola happiness machine was launched with a video showing footage of immigrant laborers in Dubai, early in the morning ready to go to work. Grim-faced men in work clothes voice how much they love and miss their families, and that they wish they could hear their children’s voices more often. Through the video we discover that these workers make about six dollars per day, and that it costs nearly a dollar per minute to call home, so phone calls are almost impossible to make as they are too costly for them. The video ends with a hopeful message: “So what if every Coke came with a few extra minutes of happiness?”

See the video here:



In March 2014, Coke installed five special phone booths in labor camps in Dubai which accepted Coca-Cola bottle caps instead of coins, allowing the workers to make a three-minute international call to their loved ones, bringing a grin to their face. More than forty thousand people made calls using the machines!!

“Few American companies have worked as hard as Coca-Cola to associate themselves with positive feelings and emotions. One of the company’s first advertising slogans, in 1905, was “Coca-Cola Revives and Sustains.The most obvious aesthetic forbear for the “Hello Happiness” ad is perhaps the iconic 1971 ad “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke,” for which Coke gathered hundreds of teenagers of various ethnicities on a hillside in Italy, at the height of the Cold War, to sing an anthem about bringing harmony to the world by—what else?—serving it a carbonated beverage.” Reported Vauhini Vara in May this year.

“That was the basic idea: to see Coke not as it was originally designed to be—a liquid refresher—but as a tiny bit of commonality between all peoples, a universally liked formula that would help to keep them company for a few minutes” says Bill Backer, who was at the time the creative director on the Coca-Cola account for McCann-Erickson.

More than four decades later, Coke’s message remains more or less the same. But the company’s audience has grown considerably.  Coca-Cola then videoed people’s reactions and put the footage on YouTube, earning it millions of views and tons of goodwill towards the brand, all for what appears to be a relatively low level of investment.

Conclusions
To conclude, the common ingredients of the success of Coca-Cola in its digital campaigns are the positive feelings it tries to evoke, via its human-centric campaigns. And these are communicated by successfully blending traditional with digital marketing to bring about amazing results which have grown its communities worldwide in staggering volumes.

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Silia Vassiliou
Silia Vassiliou

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