Launched in 1886, Coca-Cola has had ample time to hone its business game skills and rise to become one of the most recognizable brands in the world. Apart from being a product sales champion, the soft drinks giant is a leader in the marketing field. It has a number of successful regional and global advertising campaigns under its belt and is quick to adapt to the evolving marketing landscape, where social media is rapidly overtaking traditional communication channels.
We can learn a lot from Coca-Cola’s social media marketing efforts. In the following case study, we will take a look at one of the company’s most successful and iconic Instagram campaigns, which ran under the #ThisOneFor hashtag.
#ThisOnesFor kicked off in the final quarter of 2017 to promote Coca-Cola’s original Coke beverage throughout Western Europe.
Working with a host of prominent Instagram influencers, the campaign aimed not just to increase consumption over the holiday period but to drive engagement among social media users through a positive message. The marketing effort gradually expanded and turned into one of Coca-Cola’s most remarkable campaigns, still generating impressions under the #ThisOnesFor hashtag.
Collaborations with macro and micro-influencers
Coca-Cola partnered with a total of 14 Instagram influencers. Six of them were macro-influencers (account holders with at least 100,000 followers), while the remaining eight were micro-influencers (10,000 to 100,000 followers). The social media personalities created and shared 22 sponsored posts highlighting Coca-Cola’s signature beverage.
The company chose to work with the likes of UK model and vlogger Marcus Butler (3.2 million followers), UK soccer freestyler Andrew Henderson (1 million followers), UK skateboarder Alex Decunha (55,300 followers), and Belgian travel vlogger Yannick Merckx (46,900 followers). Other Brits involved in the campaign were lifestyle and beauty bloggers Poppy Deyes (1.1 million followers) and Emily Canham (674,000 followers).
Approach and content examples
Each of the influencers built a narrative around their personal relationships, who they would share a Coke with, and how this can bring people together. Their sponsored posts all included the tag @cocacolaeu and the hashtag #ThisOnesFor, which currently has 875 posts from influencers, their followers, and dedicated Coke fans. The promotional content also included a range of giveaways.
Looking into particular examples, Andrew Henderson took part in the campaign during its debut in November 2017. He shot and shared an impressive sequence of soccer juggling that incorporated a shout-out to his father. In the caption, Henderson encouraged viewers to comment for a chance to attend Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball in London with him. The Instagrammer also shared a follow-up sponsored post to thank Coca-Cola for inviting him to the concert.
View this post on Instagram
Comment below who deserves rewarding and you will be in with a chance to come with me to Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball on Saturday 9th December thanks to @CocaColaEU . I will be announcing the winner on my Instagram Live Share, inviting one of you in to reveal that you have won! Tune in on Monday December 4th at 6pm #ThisOnesFor #Ad
The giveaway was well-timed to capitalize on the spirit of holiday giving. Additionally, the opportunity to attend the concert with Henderson fueled greater engagement among his followers. Although lacking the chance for personal interaction, Marcus Butler’s offer to reward a fan with two tickets for the event in exchange for commenting below his Coca-Cola sponsored video also generated high excitement among users.
Emily Canham shouted out to her best friend Libby in a sponsored post containing a picture of the two girls and a caption reading:
“How’s this for a glow-up?! #ThisOnesFor Libby! So proud to call you my best friend- we’ve had a great year and here’s to 2018! Loving this new trend by @CocaColaEU- who do you want to shout out!! #ad”.
In a similar post, micro-influencer Roxi praised boyfriend Matt for his support and love for her. “I’m loving this new trend by @cocacolaEU #ThisOnesFor Matt!” she wrote before describing her partner’s qualities. Coinciding with the festive season, the post effectively associated Coca-Cola with the joyful experience of gathering with family and friends over the holidays and appreciating the time spent with them.
View this post on Instagram
I’m loving this new trend by @cocacolaEU #ThisOnesFor Matt! I don’t know where I would be without this one right here! He’s always making me laugh, loves me even when I’m annoying and is the most supportive boyfriend in the world! Comment below who you want to shout out to! #ad
Campaign results and conclusions
#ThisOnesFor has proven highly successful. Speaking in numbers, it has generated more than 173,000 likes, 1,600 comments, and an average engagement rate of 7.8%.
Apart from the online buzz, Coca-Cola increased brand awareness and claimed the attention of the younger demographics in the Western European region. The company managed to do that with the help of today’s opinion-shapers — social media influencers in fields ranging from fashion to travel and sport. It is apparent that nowadays presenting the personal values of real individuals is more likely to drive sales than any aggressive TV or billboard advertising push.