Thursday, December 19, 2013

Coca-Cola A Legend Of Christmas Marketing Mayhem

When most of us think of Santa the image we think of is often an iconic Coca-Cola Santa.  They have been using Santa as part of their marketing since 1920, over ninety years.

The Coca-Cola Company began its Christmas advertising with shopping-related ads in magazines like The Saturday Evening Post. The first Santa ads used a strict-looking Claus, in the vein of Thomas Nast.

In 1930, artist Fred Mizen painted a department-store Santa in a crowd drinking a bottle of Coke. The ad featured the world's largest soda fountain, which was located in the department store Famous Barr Co. in St. Louis, Mo. Mizen's painting was used in print ads that Christmas season, appearing in The Saturday Evening Post in December 1930.

In 1931 the company began placing Coca-Cola ads in popular magazines. Archie Lee, the D'Arcy Advertising Agency executive working with The Coca-Cola Company, wanted the campaign to show a wholesome Santa who was both realistic and symbolic. So Coca-Cola commissioned Michigan-born illustrator Haddon Sundblom to develop advertising images using Santa Claus — showing Santa himself, not a man dressed as Santa.

Coca-Cola’s first polar bear print advertisement appeared in France in 1922, and for the next seventy years, polar bears appeared sporadically in print advertising. In 1993, The Coca-Cola Company made a dramatic shift in its advertising by introducing the "Always Coca-Cola" campaign. The campaign by Creative Artists Agency and later Edge Creative was diverse in nature, with an initial run of twenty-seven commercials designed to appeal to specific audiences. The ads ran around the world and included a variety of innovative technical approaches, such as computer animation.

One such commercial, "Northern Lights," introduced what would become one of the most popular symbols of Coca-Cola advertising, the animated polar bear.

Coca-Cola on YouTube

1993 “Northern Lights”:

2012 “Catch”:

2013 by Ridley Scott 7 Minutes:

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