Coke Pours More Marketing Efforts Into Olympics

Coke-AACoca-Cola is heating up its marketing efforts for this summer’s Olympics, versus its reach four years ago. This year, it will expand its initiatives to nearly 100 markets, up from 36 during the Beijing event in 2008.

Efforts will focus heavily on “recruiting teens by tapping into emotional passion points like sports and music,” Coke CEO Muhtar Kent said.

Platforms will broadly involve “leveraging content, experiences and conversations,” he added. Social media will play a part.

On an earnings call Tuesday, Kent pointed to the significant views a YouTube behind-the-scenes video of the production process of Coke’s Olympics campaign generated. He said the number came with no overt promotion by Coke; the video does include ample Coke product placement.



He cited it as a "clear example of how we are successfully engaging consumers with innovative, compelling and sharable social media content."

Sparkling beverages volume rose in North America in the first quarter by just 1%, and the Coke brand eked out an increase, partly attributed to advertising in the Super Bowl and “American Idol." Coke Zero and Fanta were up by 9% and 4%, respectively. (Coke Zero’s growth was credited, in part, to the campaign linked with the NCAA tournament, a.k.a. March Madness.)

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