4 Lessons From the Direct to Consumer #ShareaCoke Initiative

April 5, 2017

By: Amanda Batista,

Head of Global Content

, Magento Commerce

4 Lessons From the Direct to Consumer #ShareaCoke Initiative

“Where’s my name?”  This single question harked by social media followers beckoned the next great idea to build on the success of #ShareaCoke. The massively viral campaign offered a surge of Coke sales (more than 1 million bottles in the first year), but also provided a springboard for launching the company’s first direct to consumer eCommerce initiative.

“[The allure of] getting your name printed on a bottle wasn’t going to live forever,” noted Todd Skidmore, Direct to Consumer eCommerce Manager at Coca-Cola, during his session at Imagine 2017, this week in Las Vegas. “We saw there were other opportunities around occasions, such as weddings, or birthday celebrations. People will buy multiple bottles with multiple names, allowing Coke to be part of those special moments in their lives.”

The iconic brand wanted to expand the value of the campaign’s impact by adding hundreds of licensed Coca-Cola merchandise SKUs in the two-month timeframe leading up to the holiday shopping season. This, Skidmore said, was the brand’s crash course in eCommerce. Coke saw substantial gains from its efforts to evolve and adapt to meet consumer demands:

  • More than 600,000 names captured in the database, via Magento;

  • 22% increase in AOV, attributed to the added merchandise options (i.e. for occasions when consumers purchase high quantities of bottles);

  • 125K gifts purchased during the holiday season thanks to the one-stop shop for all things Coca-Cola; and

  • Cyber Monday 2016 captured the most traffic and purchases on the site since its inception two years prior.

Here are 4  key lessons from Coke’s homerun rollout:

  1. Direct access to consumers drives substantial engagement – “When you can directly connect with the consumer you can follow the journey from first click all the way through channels, and ultimately to purchase,” Skidmore noted. “The flexibility of the Magento platform, as well as the partner ecosystem, provided the support required to drive business for this new initiative.”

  2. Social buzz and integration is an important slice of the pie – “The reason we launched this site is because consumers asked, ‘Where’s my name?’ on social media,” Skidmore noted. “We constantly use it as a tool to drive business. We leverage Facebook’s sharing capability to enable customers to share their sporting team’s bottle to their profiles and feed. People can then click on link and enter directly to the cart page to purchase a bottle. It’s been exciting to see people coming through share links – so we’re creating and utilizing social media that drives commerce.”

  3. Take a data first approach to optimize future initiatives – When making decisions about future business initiatives, look closely at data trends to consider the habits, trends, and offerings that will enable your consumers to purchase seamlessly. Coke is capturing the names, phrases, and logos pertinent to their consumers.

  4. Innovation powers press coverage – While the iconic Coca-Cola brand carries clout, Skidmore noted that it was the innovative approach to commerce that drove a great deal of interest in various press outlets. “We received coverage from various mainstream outlets, but also links from college forums as the team logo initiative rolled out. You get unpaid press that expands the value of your initiative when you come up with new and innovative concepts.”

Check out more highlights of Todd Skidmore’s session, and stay in touch with show takeaways by following the event hashtag #MagentoImagine