Building on 32 years of futbol history as an official sponsor of the FIFA World Cup (although a formal relationship began in 1974), the Coca-Cola Company recently launched a global ad campaign centered around its current theme of “Open Happiness” and backed by an aggressive digital strategy.
This campaign comes off the heels of the soon-to-conclude FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour which to date has seen the famed 18-carat gold trophy travel 93,958 miles (151,217 km) in over 225 days, crossing five continents and touching the lives of more than 500,000 futbol fans. The tour, which began on September 19, 2009 will do one final circuit in South Africa.
Coke will run two different commercials, “History of Celebration“, which will run in 150 countries (every national market that Coke has a presence), and “Border Crossing“, which will be viewed on televisions in approximately 37 international markets.
The third ad, called “Quest“, features the vividly animated adventure of an African boy who travels through a world of festive futbol celebrations. The highly creative viral video took over eight months to produce and was designed for use primarily online. According to goviral, a London-based branded content distribution company, Quest was one of the top 5 most viral campaigns in April.
Coke Quest by SANTO Buenos Aires / Paranoid US
The “History of Celebration” advert ties in with a first-of-a-kind YouTube partnership called the “Longest Celebration” that is truly worth taking note of from both a fan and professional level. Coke and YouTube have innovatively leveraged the world’s largest online video platform to create a custom YouTube channel, destination website, and multiple widgets that enable fans to follow the FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour, receive news feeds about FIFA World Cup info, listen to music tracks, and watch videos of goal celebrations featured in a film documentary.
Coke World Cup YouTube Channel
The custom developed YouTube channel employs a creative and fun design that screams “celebration” for futbol fans of all backgrounds. The user-interface is easy to use and allows for quick navigation of hundreds of videos on top of multiple sharing tools.
World Cup fans can submit celebratory futbol clips online or through a mobile device for the chance to win mini-competitions such as the ‘Most African Celebration’, ‘Happiest Celebration’, or ‘Funniest Celebration’. Selected videos are then edited into a continuous ‘loop’ that produces the affect of a non-stop celebration plays continuously. Amazingly, the YouTube channel is localized in more than 100 countries providing an experience in the local languages of each country.
Coke World Cup Widgets
The “Longest Celebration” widget is a sleek gadget that pulls user generated videos straight from the custom Coca-Cola YouTube Channel and enables users to watch the celebrations anywhere on the web including their desktop while the “Celebration Rhythms” widget features all of the music from Coke’s World Cup campaign including Somali hip-hop artist K’NAAN and his song Wavin’ Flag.
There are three other widgets at the disposal of fans including a RSS enabled “Celebration News”, a Google Maps enabled “FIFA World Cup Trophy Tour”, and the FIFA.com powered video reel “Celebration Inspiration”.
Coke World Cup Website
Beyond the website, however, there is minimal integration of Coke’s World Cup digital assets with their Coca-Cola Facebook Page and Coca-Cola Twitter feed. It’s a little surprising that there is not more visibility given to the Longest Celebration / What’s Your Celebration campaign especially with over 5.6 million Likes on the Facebook Page where I expected to find a custom World Cup tab.
There is one other additional digital component and it’s for video game players. EA SPORTS 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa features special Coca-Cola celebrations which can be unlocked through special codes from EA SPORTS and Coca-Cola channels in participating countries.
Powerade World Cup YouTube Channel
One last digital asset to mention in Coke’s comprehensive World Cup digital video strategy is their Powerade YouTube channel which utilizes an impressive custom developed feature that enables the user to watch 16 shorts films embedded within a timeline on the channel’s main video. Through this storytelling feature, Powerade attempts to put you the fan inside a futbol player’s inner thoughts as he faces dehydration and fatigue.
Since launching the channel in January, Powerade has racked up over 368,000 views and nearly 500 subscribers. That’s great brand exposure for a sports fitness drink that lags far behind Gatorade in the marketplace.
What do you think of Coca-Cola’s World Cup digital campaign?