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Coke's new Health Kick

Coke has launched its Health advertising campaign in Australia which is a mirror of the campaign launched earlier this year in the US. When the world leader in sugary drinks launches such a campaign it will always open itself up to cynicism.

The question that comes to mind, is Coke doing this of it’s back or are they pre-empting a change in the market?

Research on the restaurant industry in the US by the Natural Marketing Institute which segmented consumers by their attitudes about the health aspects of food may give an indication.

The study found that 17% of consumers could be classified as “well-beings,” passionate about eating healthier foods and willing to pay more for it. Another 14% are “food actives,” who want to eat better but are more price-sensitive. And 21% are “fence sitters,” who know they should make healthier choices but are busy and stressed out and need the dining outlet to make it easy for them. Together these three groups make up 52% of restaurant customers, a group too big to ignore.

Consumers are more educated than ever before and have become apt to make informed decisions. What Coke has done here is position itself as part of the solution, very smart. By displaying the calories and highlighting them in a national campaign it shows candor which also a great trust builder.

We must also remember that globally they already produce 650+ beverages so they have plenty of scope offer any consumer their product of choice.

Below is a segment from Channel 7’s Sunrise where discussed this new campaign


 The transcript from the Sunrise segment is below.


Natalie Barr: Thanks very much, Koshi and Sam. It is 6:51. On to something completely different. Coca-Cola has launched a new campaign to help fight obesity.

Video audio: I believe it's our responsibility to help respond to issues that affect our communities. Today one of these issues is obesity, so we're bringing more innovation, information and choices to everyone. We're working to increase [crosstalk 00:00:26].

Natalie Barr: Now the company plans to introduce smaller cans and make it easier for customers to get lots of nutritional information. But how will it go down with consumers? How will it sell? Matthew Bywater from 4Promote is with us to discuss this campaign.

Morning to you. Now we've seen some other companies do this type of thing. Were you surprised by Coke's move?

Matthew Bywater: Yeah, not really. We've actually seen Coke actually relaunch this program in the United States back in January. And when you consider what Coke is, the world's largest beverage maker, they had to go down this line. They've got to come out and have more opportunities for people to have healthier options in their offerings. So it was something we've kind of been looking, they've actually been doing, so.

Natalie Barr: Is that really what it's about, or is it sort of to try and get us having this warm fuzzy feeling about a company that promotes something that is full of sugar and probably isn't that great for you?

Matthew Bywater: Yeah, I mean, yeah. I guess again, that's one of the downsides of their advertising campaign, it can actually polarize people> It can be quite cynical of a company that for a hundred and a quarter years of actually been pushing sugary drinks. But if you look at their offering there's over 650 brands they sell globally. So they've actually been pushing a lot of lines in the sports drinks, into a lot of waters, juices and so forth. So as part of the offering, they're not so much worried about Coca-Cola itself. It's more about being the number one beverage supplier to the world.

Natalie Barr: Okay. They're doing a good job. Matthew Bywater, thanks very much this morning. Koshi and Sam.