1st response from Mary
Coca-Cola is one of the best examples of building a brand by creating customer brand evangelism. Not only do its customers enjoy the product, they buy into and connect with the story. As a corporation, Coca-Cola fully understands this and leverages its community by working with influencers, non-profits, and markets in communities directly. By understanding that in the digital age, brand communication is a two-way street, they can effectively lean into the idea of community created marketing efforts. Studies show that bringing emotion into anything will allow the human brain to document and recall information easier and have a stronger perception associated with the combination — which includes brand affinity assuming the emotion was positive (Tyng, 1). By highlighting emotional moments in campaigns (like the celebration of friends, reconnecting with family, and spending a day in an enjoyable way), they create this bond.
To achieve this, Coca-Cola uses many human-centric attributes (Kotler, 2). Two of which are physicality and emotionality. Physicality is expressed in the visual attributes of the brand itself: simple recognizable graphics, beautiful people, thoughtfully shot photography, and great graphic design all play a part in this trait. Emotionality is built through telling stories of human connection by sharing a Coke. Although they do partner with non-profits and push community initiatives, their Morality is in question with increased awareness of the health ramifications of the product itself. On the positive side, they don’t claim to be in the health and fitness category like some products (such as Gatorade) do.
I for one, am curious to see how Coca-Cola plans to market long-term despite the still-rising obesity and diabetes epidemic (Galvin, 3). As a sugar-packed product, they are only able to push a beverage that is inherently bad for you for so long when views on health and nutrition slowly evolve. Research on the Millennial generation shows that a staggering percentage of this group believes in daily (ie. lifestyle) healthy eating habits, which include ditching products like cereal and sodas, causing brands to shift offerings to focus on lowered sugar content or heightened macronutrients, like fiber (Yue,4). Even schools are beginning to embrace and apply a healthier menu in schools, including in-school gardens and meatless Mondays. Will the power of storytelling win? I guess only time will tell.
- Chai M. Tyng, Hafeez U. Amin, Mohamad N. M. Saad, and Aamir S. Malik*. (2017). The Influences of Emotion on Learning and Memory. Emotion Science, a section of the journal Frontiers in Psychology
- Kotler et al., (2016) Marketing 4.0. Gildan Media
- Galvin, G. (2020). The U.S. Obesity Rate Now Tops 40%. US News.
- Yue, F. (2019). How millennials eat: Are they killing beer, American cheese and canned tuna? USA Today.
2nd Response from Shamell
Coca-Cola uses real life stories that are current and relevant to the lives of the people who will ultimately purchase the product. According to Kate Santore (4), they involve their fans in the story telling so that it creates a dialogue between them. She notes that they use fan stories and lives so that it creates a real-life experience.
“A Good Feeling”
Coca-Cola creates “a good feeling” for buyers through ads that often place less focus on the soda, but instead on something that may make them feel good. They have a wide range of ads that show people on beaches, with friends, or with family simply enjoying themselves in everyday activities. In some ads, they may focus on a specific time of year such as Christmas. One of their oldest ads is shown because it creates a sense of nostalgia for buyers and it makes them feel good to think about the coming seasons and time of year (3).
Kotler’s Six Attributes
The first ad I chose was “Coca Cola’s Brotherly Love.” The ad shows an older brother picking on his younger brother for most of the ad. Then it shows the younger brother being picked on by a group of other boys and the older brother chases them away. The younger brother sips the Coke and the younger brother makes him spill it on himself. I got the message that no one else can pick on my brother except for me. It, for me, hit an emotionality attribute because you get to see them bond over the Coke and see that the older brother really does love his younger brother.
The second ad that I chose is “For the Human Race.” This ad is all about sociability and making people feel good during our current events and dealing with COVID-19. The ad counters everything negative with something positive that truly helps people with being optimistic and treating one another better. There is also a scenario for everyone because we are all experiencing the effects of this virus together. It is completely relevant and relatable.
- Coca-Cola Brotherly Love. (2016). Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qdPXQLrueRg
- For the Human Race. (2020). Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qyYROCpfcs4
- Pritchard, M. (2017). P&G: The reinvention of advertising. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/XhMVWzVXNNk
- Santore, K. (2017). The sweet pleasures of Coca-Colas Storytelling. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/WwdGlE4jxKM