On January 14th 2013, Coca-Cola launched an advertising campaign aimed to “tell the truth" about its products.
The campaign is Coke’s offensive play against the rising criticism of fast food and sugar filled products and an attempt to retain consumer loyalty by being “honest."
Unfortunately I don’t think the message is all that honest. It’s another fluffy, feel-good ad that doesn’t really discuss the issue of obesity. The subject of obesity is lip service at best.
Eleven days after Coke launched its campaign, a new “fake" campaign surfaced.
Using the exact same imagery and much of the same messaging as the original, this unofficial ad contains the “real" truth. The truth that nutritionists and other commentators wish Coke had actually communicated.
While the official version talks to how Coca-Cola is lowering the levels of its products’ sugar content, offering smaller portions, working with city councils and schools; the unofficial version talks to the real issue of obesity and the negative impacts Coke’s products have on overall health and nutrition.
Wouldn’t it be cool if Coca-Cola launched a campaign similar to the unofficial version?
Sure it would incredibly ballsy, but I think this kind of honesty would be truly visionary.
If Coca-Cola were to say, “this is the truth and these are the consequences…and it’s your choice and you are in control" then it would be seen by consumers as being responsible and forthright. Hence, the next time someone chooses to by a can of pop, they’ll turn to the brand that they trust to be honest with them. Instead Coca-Cola’s only danced around the truth and I highly doubt the campaign will achieve what it was intended to.
What do you think? How would the real truth affect consumers and the Coke brand relationship? Would a real truth campaign hurt the company as attitudes and increasing knowledge towards health and nutrition shift? Or would it help the company as they are seen as being responsible?