Who Gets the Coke? Fans Determine Storyline of Coca-Cola Big Game Ad Campaign in Real Time
During the most hotly contested gridiron game next month, teams on the quest for the ultimate refreshment will be battling online rather than on the field. This year, Coca-Cola is “gamifying” the Big Game. Through an unprecedented second screen experience, fan engagement within digital, social and mobile will drive the outcome of Coca-Cola's Big Game broadcast television commercials in real time.
The Company will launch a 30-second trailer for the campaign on January 23, across all major television outlets. The trailer, a call to action for fans to kick-off the Coke Chase, encourages them to log on to CokeChase.com to vote for their favorite team and sabotage their fictional foes. The first-of-its-kind campaign follows three factions of characters – a band of Cowboys, a gang of “Badlanders” and a pack of Vegas-style Showgirls – as they chase after an elusive bottle of Coca-Cola. The campaign's 60-second commercial, entitled “Mirage,” will live online at CokeChase.com until its television debut on February 3rd, during the first half of the game. Fans' actions will determine how the storyline plays out, and following the final whistle of the Big Game, one of three produced 30-second payoff ads will air to complete the narrative.
“The Big Game is the ultimate platform for showcasing brands' preeminent advertising, but this year we're also using America's biggest stage to kick-off Coca-Cola's marketing efforts for the entire year that will focus on Coke as the ultimate refresher,” said Pio Schunker, Senior Vice President of Integrated Marketing Communications, Coca-Cola North America. “We're raising the bar from last year's Big Game campaign, we're being bolder than ever before, and we're experimenting with even more second-screen innovation.”
In “Mirage,” the Cowboys, Badlanders and Showgirls spot and pursue a distant vision of an ice-cold bottle of Cola-Cola in the middle of a blazing hot desert. All that stands in their way is the sand, the heat…and each other. With sweat on their brows and refreshment on their minds, the groups set off on horseback, dune buggies and even a glamorous, glittery bus toward the object of their affection. Members from each faction are caught up in playful skirmishes and melees as they speed across the sand, until they finally arrive at their destination…which turns out not to be an actual Coke, but a billboard promising refreshment a mere 50 miles ahead. Undeterred, the Showgirls, Badlanders and Cowboys are seen following the direction of the sign, igniting the chase, and turning fans to CokeChase.com to get in on the game. Real-time updates on the Chase and character engagement will take place on every major form of digital and social media. While the stars of “Mirage” make their big TV debut, they also will spring to life on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube and Instagram, giving fans more ways to interact with a Coca-Cola campaign than ever before.
As the final whistle blows and the winner of the Big Game is celebrated, Coca-Cola will reveal the winner of the Coke Chase based on fan participation throughout the game via a 30-second commercial that completes the journey. Each of the three 30-second spots depicts a different faction capturing the few remaining bottles of Coke available at the remote Oasis Mart. All three will be cued and ready for broadcast while The Coca-Cola Company representatives tabulate fan votes and deduct points for sabotages. As the winning team is determined, Coca-Cola will work with the network to air the spot that earned the most fan support.
After the winning 30-second commercial hits the airwaves, anyone who Likes or Follows the Coke Chase will be rewarded with additional content, and the first 50,000 people who participated in the Chase and log on to, or sign-up for, MyCokeRewards will receive a coupon for a free bottle of their choice of Coca-Cola, Diet Coke or Coke Zero as a thank you.
Creating connections with retailers is another key initiative for this year's Big Game campaign. Partnering with Coca-Cola in the lead up to their biggest selling day of the year, Domino's Pizza and Coca-Cola will bring “Mirage” to life together online. From MyCokeRewards Instant Wins to Coca-Cola being integrated directly into Domino's Online Ordering page and Pizza Tracker, Domino's and Coca-Cola have created a winning strategy. Another first, Domino's will be exclusively integrated into Coca-Cola's Big Game creative execution on CokeChase.com.
“This year's Coca-Cola Big Game campaign represents the way our Company is evolving as a marketer,” said Stuart Kronauge, General Manager of Sparkling Beverages, Coca-Cola North America. “We're celebrating the liquid and reminding people that Coca-Cola is the ultimate refresher and engaging them in an unprecedented social experience. This fully integrated fan experience transcends simple TV advertising, hands over the power to our fans and creates new connections with retail on America's biggest advertising stage.”
The Coke Chase
Coca-Cola will begin driving fans to CokeChase.com through a 30-second teaser spot that will flood television networks 11 days before the Game Day coin toss. In addition, creative will appear on the Coca-Cola Digital Network outdoor boards encouraging audiences to log on and vote. Coca-Cola will begin driving visitors to CokeChase.com through social media and a paid media campaign that kicks off with a YouTube takeover on January 23. At CokeChase.com, visitors will get a first look at the 60-second ad and can begin voting for their favorite faction immediately. Voting will remain open until the final whistle of the Big Game blows.
Once they've cast a vote, visitors can extend the fun by committing an act of “sabotage” against an opposing group. An act of sabotage delays rival teams giving fans an opportunity to truly impact the outcome while engaging in fun content. Fifteen different sabotages depicting a light-hearted scenario, event or detour were filmed – five adversely affecting each faction. Nine will be unlocked for gaming prior to February 3rd.
Fans can share the fun with their social networks by casting a vote for their favorite group on Twitter by using hashtags supporting the #CokeShowgirls, #CokeCowboys or #CokeBadlanders. Those who cast a vote on game-day by tweeting @CocaCola with their favorite faction's hashtag will receive responses from the team, including a link to the sabotage page on CokeChase.com where they can continue the rally. The Company's Facebook, YouTube and Twitter platforms will play a major role in delivering real-time updates on the factions' progress, and additional Chase and character content will appear on Tumblr and Instagram. Across these channels, fans will find themselves in the middle of the action and receive a “behind-the-scenes” look at the characters in their pursuit of the ultimate refreshment on Game Day. The entire digital experience is optimized for desktop, mobile and tablets to provide the best possible experience on any device.
This is the seventh consecutive year Coca-Cola commercials will appear during the Big Game broadcast. Coca-Cola worked with Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore. to create and produce “Mirage,” its three 30-second alternate endings, all 15 sabotage scenes and the program centerpiece, CokeChase.com.
“Mirage” exemplifies what people have come to expect – and demand – from such an iconic brand. It also follows the launch of two new groundbreaking ads, “Be Ok” and “Coming Together,” which reinforce The Company's role in addressing the important issues of our time while continuing to create engaging campaigns that educate our fans and build brand love.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, our Company's portfolio features 15 billion-dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of 1.8 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world's top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit Coca-Cola Journey at www.coca-colacompany.com, follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo or check out our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com.
The Coca-Cola Company
Lauren Thompson, 404-676-3034