Coca-Cola's Campaign Misfires

The company describes the campaign "Taste the Feeling" as more focused on product than the previous slogan "Open Happiness." Chief Marketing Officer Marcos de Quinto explains, "We've found over time that the more we position Coca-Cola as an icon, the smaller we become. The bigness of Coca-Cola resides in the fact that it's a simple pleasure-so the humbler we are, the bigger we are. We want to help remind people why they love the product as much as they love the brand."

New 60-second spots show people enjoying the product, and a series of print ads are described as "Norman Rockwell meets Instagram." 

That's all fine, but the company also launched a GIF maker for people to create their own ads, and we can guess what happened next. People created ads about divorce, foot fetishes, and predictably, bodily functions.

The company responded with this statement:

"Our intention is to invite people to share their feelings in fun and uplifting ways as they discover our new ‘Taste the Feeling' campaign. While the vast majority have used ‘GIF The Feeling' in positive ways, it's unfortunate to see that some people have chosen to use our campaign to do just the opposite." 

Discussion Starters: 

  • Should Coca-Cola have predicted the results? A writer on Digiday thinks so. 
  • Assess the company's statement. How well does it work in response to the failed GIF maker?
  • Besides this failure, what's your view of the "Taste the Feeling" videos and pictures?