Americans will get to know more of their Coca-Cola neighbors this summer via the next phase of a multi-channel communications initiative highlighting the company’s growing portfolio of beverages and the good Coca-Cola people do in communities across the country.
A new commercial called “Dear Future”, and a grassroots challenge that invites young adults to vie for grant funding and mentoring resources to support local community programs, anchor the company’s effort to re-introduce Coca-Cola not just as the global brand people know and love, but also as a total beverage company with deep local roots and a longstanding commitment to making a difference in the communities its 90,000 system employees proudly serve.
“‘Dear Future’ is about who we are as a company and who we want to be,” through both the beverages we make and the actions we take,” said Caren Pasquale Seckler, vice president, social commitment, Coca-Cola North America. “As we started telling our story last fall, we felt it would be powerful to go deeper into the communities where we live and work and help inspire ideas to renew and strengthen them. The people who enjoy our brands are our neighbors, so the actions we take together in our hometowns can create shared opportunity.”
This next chapter is being told through a local lens and Coca-Cola employee voices. TV, print and digital creative will highlight Coke’s diverse beverage portfolio – from ZICO Coconut Water, to Odwalla juice, to smartwater – and show how the company and its people are making an impact in local communities through a focus on job creation, environmental sustainability, education, disaster relief and more.
Coke employees are once again at the heart of the work. The new “Dear Future” commercial features Curtis Long from Coca-Cola Consolidated in Charlotte, N.C. and Jeff Whitman of Coca-Cola Beverages Florida in Miami, and nearly 60 other members of the Coca-Cola USA family are featured in print and digital communications. “Dear Future” was filmed in Coca-Cola bottling plants and communities across the country.
A Total Beverage Company With Local Roots
The communications effort comes at a time of transition for Coca-Cola. The company recently concluded a decade-long process to return ownership of local Coca-Cola bottling and distribution operations to independent company partners across the country.
Coke also continues to take steps to offer more of the drinks people want, across more beverage categories and packaging options. But according to Pasquale Seckler, two-thirds of Americans are unaware that the company produces more than soft drinks and DASANI water.
“As we evolve to become a total beverage company, it’s important that we are just as thoughtful in connecting consumers to our company’s overall meaning, local mission, and beverage portfolio as we are in connecting people to our individual brands,” Pasquale Seckler said. “While early awareness on our communications is promising and we are seeing some encouraging feedback from consumers, we continue to have an opportunity to share the story of who we are, what we make and what we stand for – and inspire people to join us in making a difference in our hometowns.”