An Introduction to Coca Cola
Coca Cola is one of the two leading brands in the soda industry and the largest brand of non-alcoholic beverages in the world. The international empire of Coca Cola spans more than 200 countries. The company has a large product portfolio of sparkling and still beverages. The soda industry has felt the pinch of economic slow-down and post-recession, currency fluctuations have affected the profits of leading soda brands. The popularity of soda drinks has also reduced due to the growing popularity of health drinks and other health trends.
Apart from the large market share, Coca Cola is known for its strong brand image and high customer loyalty. It invests a very large sum each year in marketing and promotion for growing brand recognition and customer engagement. In recent years, it has focused on optimizing its product mix to cater to the changing taste of consumers worldwide.
Target Market of Coca Cola:
The target market of Coca Cola lies mainly in the 15-35 age group. While Coca Cola products are popular among middle-aged customers also, the core customer segment of the brand is the teenagers and youth mainly. It enjoys strong popularity among both male and female consumers. Due to being affordable, the Coca Cola products are not targeted at a specific class of consumers. However, it is mainly the modern, young, and fun-loving youth that form the target market of Coca Cola. The soft drink brand has selected to position itself as a brand for the youth mainly. It has positioned itself as a brand that stands for youth, freedom, and happiness. Coca Cola targets both individual customers and families. Its ads target the youth as well as families. Celebrations and parties are mostly a central attraction in the ads of Coca Cola.
Read the marketing mix of Coca Cola and its seven Ps – product, place, price, promotion, people, processes, and physical evidence.
Coca Cola has a large product portfolio of 500 sparkling and still brands. It provides nearly 3,900 beverage choices. Its leading product Coca Cola is one of the world’s most recognized and valuable brands. There are 21 billion-dollar brands in its portfolio, of which 19 are available in low or no-calorie choices.
Here are some of the most known brands in Coca Cola’s portfolio:
- Coca-Cola – Most popular and highest selling soft drink in history and also one of the most recognizable brands in the world.
- Sprite: A popular lemon-lime flavored soft drink introduced in 1961.
- Fanta: The second oldest brand from Coca Cola, introduced in 1940, comes in orange flavor.
- Diet Coke: Known as Coca Cola light in many markets. A sugar and calorie-free soft drink. Introduced in 1982.
- Coca Cola Zero: Launched in 2005, this zero sugar brand acquired the status of a million-dollar brand in 2007.
- Coca Cola life: A low-calorie drink with cane sugar and Stevia leaf extract.
- Minute Maid: A juice brand acquired by Coca Cola in 1960.
- Ciel: Purified non-carbonated bottled water introduced in 1996.
- Powerade: Drink for energy and hydration made with carbohydrates, electrolytes, and fluids.
- Powerade zero: Sports and fitness drink with electrolytes minus the calories.
- Simply orange: Premium 100% orange juice available in six varieties.
- Fresca: Caffeine-free soft drink with a unique citrus taste.
- Glaceau Vitaminwater: Nutrient enhanced water beverage available in 26 countries.
- Del Valle: A premium line of juices and nectars sold mainly in Latin America and Central America.
Coca Cola has an extensive beverage distribution system. Its products are sold in more than 200 countries across 6 operating regions including Europe, Latin America, North America, Pacific, Eurasia & Africa. Coca Cola sells an average of 1.9 billion servings each day. Traditionally, the company has relied on its bottling partners for the packaging and distribution of its products.
As Coca Cola notes, “While many view our Company as simply “Coca-Cola,” our system operates through multiple local channels. Our Company manufactures and sells concentrates, beverage bases and syrups to bottling operations, owns the brands and is responsible for consumer brand marketing initiatives. Our bottling partners manufacture, package, merchandise and distribute the final branded beverages to our customers and vending partners, who then sell our products to consumers” (Coca-Cola company).
Its bottling partners work closely with customers including grocery stores, restaurants, street vendors, convenience stores, movie theatres, and amusement parks, among many others. Together they execute localized strategies of Coca Cola company. These customers sell coca-cola products to the final customers.
Pepsi is the arch-rival of Coca Cola and the closest competitor in the beverages segment. Both brands price their products competitively. Prices are not too high to go beyond the average customers’ reach and nor too low to give an impression of low quality. Coca Cola’s pricing strategy is aimed at driving brand loyalty. Moreover, due to the decreasing demand for soda products, price competition between Coca Cola and Pepsi has gotten even intense. The prices lower as the size of the package grows bigger. Bulk buyers of the product may have to pay significantly lower prices than ones buying single Coca Cola products.
Due to the intense competition in the soda industry, the top brands spend much on advertising to drive higher sales and revenue. Coca Cola’s marketing expenditure in 2016 was $4 billion. In 2018, the marketing expenditure grew to $4.1 billion. It utilizes both traditional and modern channels to promote its brand and products. Coca Cola launched its Taste the Feeling campaign in 2016 which unites all of its brands. This one brand approach taken by Coca Cola marks a significant shift from its previous marketing strategy. Apart from TV ads and outdoor ad campaigns, the company serves its ads across the internet and on social media. Its social media accounts are used to connect with its fans and followers and for customer engagement. There are more than 1,250 promotional videos of Coca Cola on its official YouTube channel. As competition has kept intensifying in the soda industry, companies are focusing more than ever on their social image and reputation. Coca Cola is also investing a lot in CSR and sustainability and developing a sustainable supply chain and manufacturing network. Investing in socially beneficial projects has proved beneficial for the company and has strengthened its image in the market.
Coca Cola is also a large employer that focuses on strategic human resources management to help its employees find career growth and job satisfaction. In 2019, the total number of employees working in the Coca Cola system grew to 86,200 of which 10,100 were working in the United States. employees are a source of competitive advantage in the 21st century. Therefore, companies like Coca Cola have implemented human resource management strategies that enable employee empowerment and maximize job satisfaction. The company has also established a system of rewards and recognition that work to drive employee retention higher.
The Coca Cola system includes the Coca Cola company and its around 225 bottling partners. The international business operations of the company are supported by these bottling partners as well as a large distribution network. The Coca Cola company sells concentrates and syrups that it produces in its concentrate operations to its bottling partners. This is the main source from which the company generates net operating revenues. The bottling partners of Coca Cola produce the final product that is sold to the customers worldwide. They combine the concentrates with still and/or sparkling water, and/or sweeteners, depending on the product, to prepare, package, sell and distribute finished beverages. The finished product operations of Coca Cola mainly include the company owned or company controlled bottling, sales, and distribution operations.
Coca Cola’s physical operations are spread out globally. The physical infrastructure of the company includes its concentrate manufacturing operations, as well as headquarters, and other regional offices in the various corners of the globe. Moreover, we come across a lot of physical evidence related to Coca Cola’s business on a daily basis. Apart from Coca Cola bottles and promotional material, there is a lot of merchandise inside various retail stores which also counts as physical evidence. The Coca Cola logo is visible on the packages as well as on advertisements and promotional material. Globally, there is hardly a region where you will not be able to find some evidence of Coca Cola’s business whether it is a large outdoor ad or a small bottle of one of the Coca Cola beverages.
- https://www.coca-colacompany.com/stories/taste-the-feeling-launch 4.https://www.businessrevieweurope.eu/marketing/856/Top-20-companies-with-the-biggest-advertising-budget
|APA.||Pratap, A. (2020). Marketing Mix of Coca Cola: Product, Place, Price, and Promotion. notesmatic. Retrieved 25 February 2020, from https://notesmatic.com/2017/03/coca-cola-marketing-mix/.|
|MLA.||Pratap, Abhijeet. “Marketing Mix Of Coca Cola: Product, Place, Price, and Promotion”. Notesmatic, 2020, https://notesmatic.com/2017/03/coca-cola-marketing-mix/. Accessed 25 Feb 2020.|
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