Coke Zero relaunches as ‘edgier’ brand

Coca-Cola is relaunching its light cola variant Coke Zero as an “edgier” brand with marketing that looks to soften its blokey image as it looks  to establish the drink as “an icon to a new generation”.

Coke Zero 2014 TV ad
A still-frame from the forthcoming ‘Just Add Zero’ Coke Zero ad.

Coke Zero, or “Bloke Coke” as it was often referred to, is being relaunched on 13 January with an integrated marketing campaign dubbed “Just Add Zero” and a new visual identity that features a red circle icon, appearing across all marketing touch points such as outdoor, POS, digital and limited edition packs.

Coca-Cola says the campaign has been created for a “new demographic” of young people who have emerged out of challenging times but have a positive outlook and hope to lead richer lives.

The activity, created by Publicis, centres around a TV ad which shows a man in a series of situations where he experiences more by “adding zero” – such as adding zero to his two sisters to produce 20 attractive friends and transforming a party of 100 people into 1,000 festival goers.

It then takes a twist when the protagonist’s love interest turns one attractive man into 10 – which Coca-Cola says demonstrates its efforts to broaden Coke Zero’s launch target market of men to appeal to women too.

Bríd Drohan-Stewart, Coca-Cola Great Britain marketing activation director, says the company is confident the upcoming campaign will help Coke Zero “take centre stage”.

Coke Zero product
Coke Zero’s new visual identity

She adds: “Coke Zero has seen a healthy sales growth in the UK in a short space of time and now we’re marking a new edgier direction with the ‘Just Add Zero’ platform, which we believe is a life philosophy.”

The relaunch marks the most significant change to the brand since it launched in 2006, Coca-Cola says.

Coke Zero grew in value by 22 per cent to £85m and in volume by 26 per cent in Great Britain last year, according to Nielsen data for the year to 21 December. In France, Belgium and Sweden Coke Zero is the second best-selling brand in the “lights” category, Coca-Cola claims.

Last year Coca-Cola launched a UK TV ad campaign and extended its Responsibility Deal commitments to highlight the action it was taking to help solve the global obesity problem by reminding viewers to watch their calories when managing their weight and consider switching to no calorie alternatives like Coke Zero. 

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