Coca-Cola is fighting for your attention.
The company is unveiling a new look for flavored Coke products this month, and it has a new Coke variety coming in a few weeks. It’s part of the company’s renewed focus on its Coke brand, as it dumps niche products and tries to drum up excitement for its core beverages.
In the United States, new versions of Cherry Coke cans and bottles are magenta, with the white Coca-Cola logo emblazoned on the regular version and a black Coca-Cola logo on the Zero Sugar version. The new Vanilla Coke cans and bottles are cream-colored, and the Cherry Vanilla flavor’s new packaging is a mix of the two (heavy on the magenta).
Coke with zero caffeine as well as Coke with zero caffeine and no sugar also have new looks, keeping with these designs.
The company decided in 2020 to cut its portfolio in half, dropping its underperforming brands and focusing on its most powerful ones, like Coke. Now, Coca-Cola (KO) is working on refreshing Coke’s look and enticing new customers with new products.
The new packages will start to hit shelves in late January.
Standing out on the shelf
Updates to the flavored Coke packages are designed to “modernize and simplify the look … [and] help consumers find the flavor they’re looking for on the shelf,” said Natalia Suarez, senior brand manager of Coke Choice Portfolio, the company’s North America operating unit.
The updated cans are supposed to “quickly communicate flavors and clearly distinguish between full-sugar and zero-sugar/calorie-free options,” she added.
The company started overhauling its packaging last year, she noted, when it changed the packaging of Coke, Diet Coke and Coke Zero Sugar. The company also tweaked the recipe for Coke Zero Sugar in an effort to make the drink taste more like regular Coke.
Grabbing customers’ attention as they walk down the grocery aisle is essential to brands like Coke, which have to make the most out of their shelf space.
“It’s a Darwinian struggle for space in the supermarket or in the convenience store,” Coca-Cola CEO James Quincey told CNN Business last year.
Coke with Coffee
Another way to get people excited about Coke is to expand beyond traditional flavors. So the company is launching a new variety of Coke with Coffee.
About a year ago, the company brought Coke with Coffee — Coke made with coffee powder — to the United States.
“Coca-Cola with Coffee was met with a widespread, enthusiastic consumer response,” when it first started selling in North America, said Brandan Strickland, brand director of Coca-Cola Trademark.
The product already comes in Dark Blend, Vanilla and Caramel. And now a new Mocha flavor will reach US shelves on February 7.
Mocha is the logical next flavor, said Strickland, noting the move was “a no-brainer.”
Coca-Cola also tried to expand beyond cola with its Coke Energy product, which hit North American shelves in early 2020 and was discontinued in the region in the spring. Coca-Cola pulled the product because it wasn’t performing well.