Magazine article Marketing

Coke Steps Up Local Activity in UK

Magazine article Marketing

Coke Steps Up Local Activity in UK

Article excerpt

Coca-Cola GB's Charlotte Oades tells Cordelia Brabbs about its UK-specific marketing plans

Coca-Cola is kicking off a range of UK-based initiatives, including an exclusive tie-up between Diet Coke and the Hollywood movie of best-selling book Bridget Jones' Diary, as it seeks to tailor its marketing to local needs.

A sequel chapter to the novel, written exclusively for the promotion by Bridget Jones author Helen Fielding, will be included in 12- and 24-packs of Diet Coke, and the company is also sponsoring previews in local cinemas, with ticket promotions appearing in regional newspapers.

The deal is one of a series of initiatives planned by Charlotte Oades, who joined the company as marketing director for Coca-Cola GB & Ireland last summer.

In accordance with Coca-Cola's newfocus on local markets, all have their sights set firmly on British consumers.

The first of these is a second wave of the Coke Auction online promotion, this time dubbed 'Real Coke Rush'.

It follows the scheme's success last year, when 112,000 people visited the web site. Launching on Monday February 26, Real Coke Rush offers consumers the chance to buy experiences that will give them a 'rush', such as white water rafting, by collecting ringpulls to exchange for online credits.

Advertising, through Soul, launches this weekend, showing people trying to re-create the experiences themselves.

One ad shows a teenager performing on his mixing decks in front of his gran in his bedroom. Only when he has finished does she turn her hearing aid back on and give him the thumbs up. The strapline reads: 'Not everyone can DJ at the Ministry of Sound'.

"We've listened to our consumers and realised they want experiences, not just promotional stuff," said Oades. "If we deliver that, we bring the brand to life in a way that touches them and builds our relationship with them over time."

Oades has restructured Coca-Cola GB's marketing department to work on different 'life-stage' groups, such as youth and adult, for all its brands, excluding Coke and Diet Coke.

Marketers will focus on how the company's brand portfolio fits with the needs of each stage, then identify new brand opportunities.

Examples of such initiatives include the launch of clubbers' drink Burn, pitched at the same market as Red Bull, and a joint deal with The Sun and News of the World for a music promotion called Music 4you. …

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