How Coke is bringing back the spirit of Santa to the misbelievers

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Brands that live their values in unexpected and creative ways are those that will flourish in today’s highly critical consumer landscape. We all know the champions: Nike, Red Bull, Starbucks and Coke. With each initiative these Brands are forced to dig deeper and deeper to their core to birth creative gems that not only continue to cement their values in the collective conscious but also blur the definitions of marketing. 

The following example from Coca-Cola really explores the parameters of optimism and happiness without breaching the limit where it seems that the Brand is trying too hard. They do this by tapping into a person’s inner child where optimism reigned and the disillusions of the real world hadn’t penetrated their worldly perceptions. They have been doing this well in the recent past with initiatives such as the Happiness Machine (see here). With this initiative they leveraged the emotionally-charged innocence of sending your wish list to Santa. However, instead of targeting kids, they focused on adults who have long forgotten that they wrote such letters many moons ago. In other words, Coke reignited the belief in good in adults who may have seen their belief fade with the years.

While the product is not central to the experience their unique values are. Since these values are starting to be owned by the Brand they can explore this type of storytelling without risking poor association. Well done.

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