Diet Coke drops ‘hunk’ strategy in pursuit of male consumers

Coca-Cola GB has finally killed off the Diet Coke “hunk” in an attempt to broaden the brand’s appeal to men.

A new campaign, which launches this week, heralds a return to the Diet Coke “break”, which was shelved last summer and replaced by an ad depicting a group of women who contrive a way to sneak a handsome man into their party.

The new commercials are set in an office, and feature five key characters. They aim to tap into the UK office break-time culture, and are based on the developing relationship between the two main characters Matthew and Jennifer.

But Coca-Cola GB marketing director Andrew Harrison denies the company plans to pursue a Nescafé-style romantic theme. He says: “The ‘hunk’ commercials had become very formulaic. We wanted the new ads to have a greater local focus, with a more down-to-earth creative strategy to appeal to UK consumers – men and women alike.”

The series represents the first Diet Coke commercials to be filmed in the UK, although only one character, Matthew, is played by a UK actor. The campaign has been created by Wieden & Kennedy in London.

Three executions have been shot – “Introduction”, “Close friends” and “Love letter” – and all are backed by Seventies disco hit “Love to love you baby”. The song, which was originally performed by Donna Summer, has been re-recorded by girl group Honeyz.

The TV campaign will run for six months, supported by radio, outdoor and Internet executions.

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