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Coca-Cola exec: Our world is more digitally connected

NEW YORK ? A Coca-Cola executive at the NRF 102nd Annual Convention & Expo said that mobile and social are transforming the way marketers reach consumers and help the brand build ongoing relationships with users.

During the ?Coca-Cola Opens Happiness for Consumers and Retailers? opening keynote session, the executive discussed how the mobile and social industry continues to evolve and change. The session was moderated by Lori Mitchell-Keller, senior vice president of the retail industry business unit at SAP.

?The explosion of digital devices will continue, but the bigger question is, what will we do about it,? said Alison Lewis, senior vice president of marketing at Coca-Cola. ?Stories are the new currency.

?We let them spread real-time to create scale,? she said.

Building happiness
Last year, Coca-Cola invested a lot of advertising dollars in mobile and social to make its Super Bowl campaign a standout.

The campaign, which centered around strengthening second-screen users, featured the brand?s polar bear mascots as football fans rooting for opposite teams and watching and reacting to the game in real-time.

In addition to promoting the effort through TV spots, Coca-Cola also ran a live stream, as well as rich-media banners on media sites featuring the bears reacting to the games and commercials.

Furthermore, there was Twitter and Facebook integration where fans were encouraged to interact with the polar bears.

According to Ms. Lewis, nine million users streamed the online content during the game and spent an average of 28 minutes interacting with the bears.

?In 2012, we unlocked the social side of the Super Bowl game,? Ms. Lewis said. ?We realized consumers watch the event with a second-screen device.

?In recognizing this, we thought about what we can do to further engage consumers,? she said. ?So we created this campaign that fully leveraged the second-screen by making the viewership of the game that much more enjoyable.?

Ongoing efforts
According to Melvin Landis, chief retail sales officer at Coca-Cola, the company?s ongoing mission is to refresh the world and create hope, optimism and opportunity.

For the beverage giant, it is all about translating brand value into customer value and building capability to sustain repeat customers.

?We want to turn shoppers into buyers and cement loyalty into consumers,? Mr. Landis said. ?It all starts with great brands and ultimately we do that by collaborating with our customers.

?The secret formula for us is creating a unique experience for our customers," he said.

It is important for marketers to transform the consumer experience and make it a memorable one. Doing so helps build loyalty and drive repeat customers.

?Consumers want choice,? Mr. Landis said.

?And when we know what the customer is looking for, we can provide that choice,? he said.

?We want to be authentic and transparent with consumers. We want to listen to them.?