Diet Coke sales keep falling, but the marketing investment behind the struggling soda keeps flowing in the US this year. Coca-Cola put significant media support behind the launch of a new Diet Coke packaging design program. Diet Coke’s fun new packaging stunt uses HP Indigo digital printing technology to create millions of completely unique labels. The campaign appropriately themed, “It’s Mine”, adopts Coca-Cola’s one-brand global strategy meant to unite sub-brands under one campaign.
You thought Coca-Cola was getting personal when it rolled out 250 bottle labels featuring people’s first names. This campaign involved dressing cans and bottles in 2 million unique, colourful designs. A select number of patterns will be seen on mini-cans, aluminum bottles, as well as cans and PET bottles. However, no two glass bottles will be the same. This campaign also happens to be the first time Diet Coke is selling a 12-ounce glass contour bottle in the US.
Not all is well for the brand though. In recent years, some of Diet Coke’s sales have gone flat as the brand continues to lose drinkers in the diet soda category. Last year marked the tenth straight year for sales decline of major no-calorie soda brands, according to a Beverage-Digest report. Retail sales of Diet Coke fell 5.9%, while Diet Pepsi dropped 7%. That hasn’t stopped the Diet Coke from funnelling money into the “It’s Mine” campaign.
“In North America, Diet Coke has so much equity,” said Rafael Acevedo, group director for Diet Coke, Coca-Cola North America. “You will continue to see future executions that will be completely based on Diet Coke by itself and communicating its own personality and really connecting with the loyal consumer base that it has.”
If the packaging stunt looks familiar, that’s because Diet Coke did the same thing in Israel last year. HP Indigo, which was founded in Israel, is the one who helped Coke solve the enormous production challenges around the “Share a Coke” campaign. A special algorithm was used as a unique design technique, which allowed millions of designs to be completely auto-generated.
The creative approach for Diet Coke continues the kind of fashion-forward, female-centric tone they have frequently deployed.
According to a company statement, “every Diet Coke drinker is different and unique, and with millions of Diet Coke designs, fans can choose the one they feel is uniquely their own.”
Dr Pepper, whose whole campaign is built around being one of a kind, is going to be a bit pissed.