Coca-Cola and brand love


Day two of Integrate 2013 opened with a key note session led by Scott Cuppari, Global Marketing Manager for Coca-Cola Freestyle, who also happens to be a WVU IMC program alum, discussing brand love. So what exactly is brand love and why is it important? Cuppari says that creating brand love is creating loyalty beyond reason. He named four principles of brand love:

                1. Love is a verb

                2. Love cuts across (the noise)

                3. Love comes from fusion

                4. Love is a journey

Brand love drives value. It protects the brand’s future, lowers the cost of programs and extensions, reduces sensitivity, and “breaks the tie”. When consumers are making purchase decisions brand love will make price point less of a deciding factor.

And what better example of a company who knows how to create brand love than Coke? Coke has been ranked the number one brand by Interbrand for 13 years running. It’s easy to see why when you take a look at some of their more recent marketing examples, which Cuppari shared with the group today.

Cuppari shared that Coke’s formula for success is creating content that’s “liquid and linked,” with three areas of focus: Stories, Spread and Value. Stories are the content, experiences, and conversations. Spread is the liquidity of the content; and Value refers to how the content should be linked to everything we do, or have value to us. Coke’s advertising and marketing focuses on telling stories and positioning the Coke brand as a key character in those stories, but not the only character. They are using real people and real situations and that’s what makes the content so relateable and engaging. I’ll even admit to getting a little verklempt watching a few of the clips Cuppari shared today.


Lastly, Coke is using multiple channels to share their content and stories, and they are going to the channels where the consumers are. Cuppari stressed the importance of leveraging mobile technology for storytelling by sharing these stats with us: 74% of people would give up alcohol before they’d give up their mobile phone. Fifty-five percent would forgo caffeine, and 33% would give up sex. Yep, that’s one-third folks!


To close, I have to share my favorite part of the morning, which actually happened on Twitter before and after the official presentation. As a life-long, die-hard Diet Coke consumer and fan, this just made my day:


Twitter conversation with @ScottCuppari just made my day.

If you attended Integrate today, what were your favorite take-aways from Cuppari’s session?

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8 Responses to “Coca-Cola and brand love”

  1. Tracey Gould Says:

    Excellent recap of the highlight of the day! My biggest takeaways from Scott’s presentation is don’t be afraid to be emotional, be vulnerable, and take chances with your brand. Coke’s campaign, focused on love, aims to relate, connect with their audience on a deeper, more emotional level, and create a dynamic relationship with their audience. Thinka about, with “love” as the driver for the campaign, or anything you do, how can you possibly go wrong? Love does make the world go ’round.

    • jelise2012 Says:

      Tracey – so true! Have you seen the joint Google and Coke project to re-imagine the iconic “I’d like to buy the world a Coke” hilltop commercial? It shows how the brand essence hasn’t changed much since that commercial first aired in 1971 and how it’s still relevant today. Here’s the link if you aren’t familiar:

  2. Valerie Ater Says:

    Love the “stories” that Coke uses to continually promote their brand. The videos depicting the “Happiness” and “Hug” machines were great! The target audience was certainly reached as well as various other demographics. There is truly the ” happiness” feeling when one sees a Coke ad!

    I am looking forward to trying the Coke Freestyle machine myself and to watch expressions if other consumers using the machine as well.

    Love your brand also equates to love yourself as we are all a “brand” in and of ourselves and to market one’s personal brand is to promote what we love

    • jelise2012 Says:

      Valerie — me too! I was on the website during the presentation to see where the closest Freestyle machine is to where I live and happy to find three in my town!

  3. Jerome Brown Says:

    We talk a lot about brand loyalty and it really shows through in restaurants with beverage choice. I travel quite a bit for my job and many times I end up in a region where Coke products are not available in many restaurants. Of course, the server asks for my order, I say I’d like a Diet Coke and they look at me and say….”is Diet Pepsi OK?” I want to say “Is Canadian money ok to pay my bill?” but I don’t and just take a glass of water. There aren’t too many brands I am that loyal to but Diet Coke certainly is one.

    • jelise2012 Says:

      I hear you Jerome! When they ask me if Diet Pepsi is OK I say, “I’ll just have an iced tea, thanks.”

  4. Rebecca Agner Says:

    One of my favorite parts of his talk was Coke’s acknowledgement that Freestyle is overwhelming at first. I like the hash tag they have to share embarrassing stories (can’t remember it right now.) We have a Freestyle machine at our local Wendy’s. I will admit I live people watching at the machine – so funny! They should start a campaign showing people helping others create master mixes.

  5. Karen’s PR & Social Media Blog » Reflections on Integrate 2013: Power of storytelling within communities across all brands Says:

    […] We heard from Scott Cuppari from Coca-Cola at the very beginning. It was great to hear all about brand love and storytelling from Scott. I did find myself captivated with the essence and community Coca-Cola was creating with […]

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