Company: Coca-Cola

Agencies: Isobar China, Posterscope, Starcom

Market(s): China

Timing: May – August 2014

Right on the label, Coca-Cola’s special “Lyric Coke” capitalizes on the allure of sharing both your favorite tunes and the emotions behind them.

BACKGROUND

Coca-Cola sought to create a campaign that started from packaging, encouraged sharing in social media, and revolved around a core thought of “Share a Coke”. More simply, the goal was to grow market share by enhancing the meaning of sharing a Coke.

The younger generation of Chinese are active on social media, but more reticent on their emotions, so perhaps the emotions captured by popular classic songs could inspire sharing instead.

THE IDEA

Lyrics from 60 famous Chinese songs were printed on Coke labels. Each chosen lyric expressed an emotion from the song’s most memorable moment. By scanning a QR code on the bottle, consumers could access a short animation of the lyric, or “musicon” — an animated emoticon with sound — which could be shared on social media. Lyric bottles were then featured across all touch points: on TV, in OOH, in PR and at events.

THE PROCESS

Nine months before the campaign even began, Coca-Cola had already confirmed the Lyric Coke idea with its team of agencies. This much longer-than-average preparation period for mainland China — as well as the clarity of the core idea — allowed time for all agencies as well as local bottlers to develop and implement the idea within their own disciplines.

Isobar acted as lead agency to choose the lyrics, design the packaging interaction and digital/mobile experience. Isobar also planned and bought all digital media support. Starcom managed TV planning and buying and Posterscope developed OOH strategy as well as buying and delivery.

THE RESULTS

On average, the summer of 2014 was 6 degrees centigrade colder than 2013.  Despite this, Coca-Cola volume sales grew 6% versus a category average of 1.2%, delivering clear market share gains. Social conversation around the campaign delivered over 3 billion impressions. Media coverage generated over 15 million US dollar media value.