Coke boosts Santa-heavy holiday campaign with AI, digital experiences

2023/11/03 Innoverview Read

Dive Brief:

  • Coca-Cola launched a holiday campaign, “The World Needs More Santas,” that features a new ad as well as digital and experiential elements, per details shared with Marketing Dive. The global effort will be adapted for more than 80 markets worldwide.

  • The long-form spot features a world where everyone is Santa Claus, before revealing that, in the “real world,” anyone can be Santa through kindness. The larger marketing push includes a digital quiz, Christmas truck tours, on-pack competitions and out-of-home elements.

  • An extension of the brand’s “Create Real Magic” AI platform around holiday postcards will be revealed later in the season, the company said. The campaign was developed by WPP Open X, led by VML and supported by Grey, Ogilvy, Essence Mediacom, Hogarth and JKR.

Dive Insight:

Coke’s latest holiday campaign extends a nearly century-long theme around Santa Claus and the spirit of kindness and joy during the season. “The World Needs More Santas” imagines a world where everyone is Santa Claus, from firefighters and skateboarders to taxi drivers and gym rats, before revealing the power of kindness and generosity in the real world. The ad is soundtracked by “I Could Be Santa Claus” by British singer-songwriter Celeste.

Along with the hero spot, the campaign includes experiences in both digital and in-person channels. A “Find Your Inner Santa” quiz on the brand’s app and mobile sites determines a user’s “inner Santa” type, generating an illustration that can be shared on social media. On-pack QR codes lead to the quiz and a chance to win prizes in select markets, including a trip to Rovaniemi, Finland — the “official” hometown of Santa Claus.

The Coca-Cola Christmas Truck will be on tour this year, offering consumers in select markets the ability to send digital seasonal cards, visit local food stalls and meet local charitable organizations. Out-of-home ads will go live in over 80 marketers, with digital ones directing consumers to the quiz.

The brand also teased forthcoming elements of the campaign, including two Christmas short films and a holiday-themed extension of its “Create Real Magic” AI platform, reported to be AI-powered Christmas postcards. Coke has worked to be at the forefront of the generative AI trend, per the company’s recent earnings call. Along with consumer-facing efforts around artmusic and a new beverage, the company has used generative AI to assist with insights, market data, research and trends, executives said on the call.

(Copyright: MarketingDive Coke boosts Santa-heavy holiday campaign with AI, digital experiences | Marketing Dive)