Case Study: Coca-Cola Advertising

For a change in post style, I thought I’d take a look at the history of graphic design and marketing over the years, especially in advertising approach, design and slogans. Here’s a company that prides itself in its consistency of always being the same – so much so, that it was one of its advertising campaigns:

Coke_Elvis
They don’t make ’em like they used to … We do!

Check out those sideburns!

Looking at Coca Cola’s advertising campaigns since they began till now, that’s over 130 years, it is remarkable to see how design and marketing changed. Now, that may sound a little contradicting since I just introduced Coca Cola as a company that prides itself in consistency; but, not so. Consistency can be in colour, which is evident in Coca Cola’s case. Consistency can be in trademarks; take a look at Coca Cola’s logo for the complete 130-year period (it actually changed the logo for one year and then quickly reverted back – see Coca Cola Journey). Consistency can be in product, which Coca Cola claims to be true in its case also.

However, when it comes to advertising, your approach has to change with the times. I’m not talking about going from black and white to colour, or going from paper to Television. Even in the same medium, you will need to slightly adjust the way you present your message and the target audience.

The slogan in the earlier advertisements was, “Drink Coca Cola!” As the years went, the slogan changed and it became about why you should drink Coca Cola; it’s refreshing, it brings happiness, it’s the real thing, you can’t beat the feeling and, finally, it’s a way of life – the Coke side of life.

It makes you wonder where they’ll go next!

The images below don’t portray the complete history of Coca Cola ads but samples of each decade starting from 1889 till 2017.

Which is your favourite? Share in the comments below.

For the full history of Coca Cola’s slogans, visit Preceden.