Coke uses ads to thank consumers for ‘Share a Coke’ success

Coca-Cola has launched activity thanking consumers for taking part in this summer’s Share a Coke campaign, as data reveals the initiative has lifted both sales and consumer perception of the brand over the period.

Coke Thank You Share A Coke

The brand has taken out ads on the back page of today’s (11 September) Metro newspaper and on digital out of home sites using photos sent in to the company by consumers displaying bottles of Coca-Cola with their names on and some of its experiential activity. Text states: “Thanks for sharing a Coke with us this summer”.

Coca-Cola is also preparing a thank-you video to appear on its Facebook page, supported by paid media.

The “Share a Coke” activity launched in earnest towards the end of April and saw Coca-Cola replace its branding with the country’s most popular forenames across hundreds of millions of packs.

Coca-Cola ramped up the activity throughout the summer with a TV ad, a Google+ Hangout with musician Conor Maynard, a partnership with Ocado and by touring the country with kiosks and vending machines offering an on-site printing service so consumers could print any name on-pack.

Jon Woods, managing director of Coca-Cola Great Britain and Ireland, told Marketing Week ahead of Share a Coke’s launch he hoped the campaign would replicate similar activity that took place in Australia and New Zealand last summer, by boosting engagement with the brand and growing sales.

Data suggests the activity has had the desired effect, helping Coca-Cola outperform the market on several measures.

Coca-Cola’s value sales increased 4.93 per cent year on year to £765 million in the 52 weeks to 17 August, according to IRI Worldwide data. Sales of all colas in the UK grew 2.75 per cent, all carbonates 3.11 per cent and the total soft drinks market’s value sales increased 2.36 per cent in the period.

Volume sales for the Coca-Cola brand grew 3.88 per cent, apparently stealing share from all carbonates, which marked a 0.44 per cent decrease in volume during the 52-week period, IRI Worldwide says. The total soft drinks market’s volume sales grew just 0.98 per cent.

Meanwhile, consumer sentiment towards the Coca-Cola brand appears to have shifted towards the positive end of the scale during the campaign.

Coca-Cola’s Index score – YouGov BrandIndex’s average of perception measures including impression, quality, value, reputation, satisfaction and recommendation – rose from 9.6 on the first day of the campaign (30 April) to 12.4 on 10 September.

The brand’s “Buzz” score – BrandIndex’s measure of the positive and negative things said about the brand – is up slightly from -1.1 as the campaign began to 0.1 on 10 September, although its score rose to 6.7 during the peak of the campaign mid-summer.

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Tom Fishburne is founder of Marketoon Studios. Follow his work at marketoonist.com or on Twitter @tomfishburne See more of the Marketoonist here