1.8 billion servings of Coke beverages are severed every day in more than 200 countries. Beyond being the most widely consumed beverage brand, it is the best known brand, the world over. Beyond the beverages, Coke is a brand that is loved. Indeed, love and happiness are brand goals for Coke the world over.
I was fortunate to hear Melvin Landis, Chief Retail Sales Office for Coca-Cola and Alison Lewis, senior Vice President, North America, for Coca-Cola speak at the National Retail Federation Big Ideas Show in New York last week.
The keynote presentations focused on how Coke positively promotes its various sub brands and connects these with happiness and how Coke helps retailers leverage the message of happiness and drive sales. From large businesses to small, Coke has an integrated campaign from the product through paid advertising, using social media and plenty of in-store activity to help retailers like newsagents drive sales.
Here are some of the (unedited) notes I took during the presentations:
Here are some key points about the value of the Coke brand and its connection with today’s consumer:
- Coke is a brand that inspires optimism and happiness and hope.
- Coke’s mission is about refreshing the world. It does this using a message of happiness and optimism.
- Millenial consumers very concerned about the environemnt. Coke connects with them. On … water stewardship … recycling … climate protection.
- Coke engages consumers with stories with strong and emotional content. The stories share value and create connections. This creates brand love and shared value.
- Stories are the new currency for Coke in bulding their brand.
- Coke invites all businesses to join in this journey on happiness and shared values.
- The biggest shift in retail being driven by techology / mobility.
Their targeting of millennial consumers was a surprise. I had not seen (realised) this myself and was enthralled by their pitch and their understanding of the millennial consumer.
The Coke message showed the importance of going beyond a one-off in-store offer and developing a long-term fully integrated offer that harvests shopper data, drives long-term impulse purchases and uses the main brand and a host of sub brands to attract shoppers who might otherwise not have visited the business. This is actually massive – using a beverage story to drive traffic.
Too often promotions are run in newsagencies that leech off existing traffic. While that’s okay, it is not good for the long-term growth of our businesses. we need more campaigns, products and supplier relationships that drive new traffic.
The Coke supplier / newsagent relationship is two-way, tapping into the global resources of the company. It is built around growing the newsagency business and not just seeking to drive volume of one or two beverage products over a short / medium term campaign.
To finish, here is a video of a Coke campaign in Singapore. It reflects the type of emotional connection around optimism and happiness that the company so often embraces in its consumer campaigns.
I used to think of Coke as a sugary syrupy drink that was not necessarily good for health. The reality is that in the family of products Coke offers plenty of healthy choices … all promoted through the same prism of optimism and happiness.