Creative content will fuel Coca Cola’s growth

Coca Cola no longer relies on traditional ad agencies for creative ideas, instead taking a collaborative approach to storytelling and content creation, according to its global advertising strategy head.


Coca Cola’s vice president of global advertising strategy and excellence, Jonathan Mildenhall, says the company’s Content 2020 advertising strategy is to “move from creative excellence to content excellence.”

Speaking at the Guardian Changing Advertising Summit yesterday, (20 October) Mildenhall says Coca Cola’s Content 2020 strategy aims to help its portfolio of brands gain a “disproportional share of popular culture”.

He says: “All advertisers need a lot more content so that they can keep the engagement with consumers fresh and relevant, because of the 24/7 connectivity. If you’re going to be successful around the world, you have to have fat and fertile ideas at the core.”

Coca Cola wants consumer feedback to shape the creativity of the business and no longer relies on traditional agencies for ideas.

Instead, it is adopting a more collaborative approach through crowd sourcing, fans on Facebook and Twitter, and working directly with artists and the music and film industry to create content through storytelling.

Mildenhall, formerly of London agency Mother, says “We want to double the size of the business in 10 years so we need to disrupt everything about the business.

“Our stories must add substance and value to people’s lives and it has to be the world’s most compelling content. Stories must remain connected, but no one model of content development can do it alone.”

Coca Cola’s new approach to creativity and advertising, will see it create more than 120 pieces of content as part of its London 2012 Olympic sponsorship activity, compared with just three TV ad executions and six outdoor ad executions for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Coca Cola announced a 45% rise in global revenue to $12.2bn (£7.8bn) and an 8% rise in profit to $2.2bn (£1.4bn) in the third quarter.

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