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Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dear Coke, Thanks for the Packaging Blunder!

For those of you who haven't heard, Coke announced the other that is was pulling all of it's holiday cans off the shelves based on consumer complaints.  For the first time ever, Coke departed from its signature red can, opting for a white one instead (above) to reinforce it's committment to their fund to save Polar Bears.  Backlash blasted on social media sites from diehard red can lovers and dieters that were confused about what can to choose, prompted the decision by the Coca-Cola company. 

Of course, my marketing side just couldn't pass up the opportunity to put in my 2 cents about the situation. So here goes...

Dear Coke,
First of all, I would like to thank you for the White Can fiasco that finally knocked off those silly Kardashian’s, and all of their shenanigans, from my Yahoo news page.  I was about ready to shoot my screen.

Second, I’m sorry that your holiday packaging didn’t work out.  It was a nice try, and had it worked out, I’m sure it would have gained you some positive publicity, saved a few super cute polar bears, and impacted your annual revenue for the better. (Cause Marketing is good for that kind of thing) However, more people are talking (and blogging, and tweeting, and facebooking) about you today than they were yesterday…so it’s not all bad!

The thing is, you didn’t totally screw up. The way you monitor your social media for feedback about your product line is inspiring. You actually listened when customers ranted about how much they LOVE your red cans, think that Coke in white cans tastes weird, or have been confused into thinking the holiday can was really diet Coke. Even though I (and most thinking people) could tell the difference and actually thought your white can looked pretty cool, I’d say you deserve some kudos for actually responding to your market’s complaints.

I like you, Coca Cola.  You seem genuine and good hearted.  The fact that you are trying to save some wonderful white bears is allowing me to overlook the fact that this whole packaging debacle (and the subsequent onslaught of media coverage) could just be a brilliant marketing move; fake outcry conjured in the deep recesses of your P.R. department to draw attention to your cans…I mean cause.  Yes, I know.  I sound pretty cynical.  But you have to admit, this could be a really interesting tactic to turn the conversation towards your “mistake” and away from 74 day marriages and who wore what best. 

For what it’s worth, I like your white cans.  I think I will go buy a few before they’re gone for good.  Who knows, someday they might even be worth something on E-bay. 

Best Wishes!


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