The Drink of the Rising Sun

April 20, 2016


Apologies to The Animals for leveraging their rock classic for the headline here.

In a more health conscious world, it makes sense that soda makers do what they can to get noticed. It happens all the time. Pepsi is notorious for changing up their cans with almost every printing. Coke has been a little more subtle about things… until now.

A massive repackaging of the industry leaders line is underway. Gone will be the familiar silver can/label for Diet Coke. For that matter, the name ‘Diet Coke’ seems to be gone as well. The new line-up features a large red dot backing up the familiar script logo. Look closer and you’ll see a few more alterations.

  • Coke Zero is being rebranded as Coca-Cola Zero Sugar. This is a slight, but significant change meant to bring people around to the label’s lack of granular goodness.
  • Diet Coke is making the transition to Coca-Cola Light. Considering the fact that it’s historically been the company’s number two seller, making a switch here is telling. Obviously they think that people will respond more readily to “light” than “diet”.
  • Coca-Cola Life, their Stevia-based drink, has been in a green package since it’s introduction in 2013. Not a hint of red to be seen. The new look puts it squarely into the family brand.
  • Coca-Cola itself, the flagship product, shows the least alteration with this announcement. Though it is emblazoned with the words “Original Taste”, something which you might be hard pressed to prove to those convinced that they never went back to the original taste after the New Coke debacle of 1985.

Will a change in packaging change the fortunes of the company? Maybe. Short term boosts usually accompany such a tactic. But for the long term, you’ll be able to count on those same customers that have kept you going for years. New converts may take a bit more convincing.

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