FEEL THE FORCE MACHINE

Short List
TitleFEEL THE FORCE MACHINE
BrandTHE COCA-COLA COMPANY
Category A08. Excellence in Audience Engagement or Distribution Strategy for Branded Content
Product/ServiceCOCA-COLA ZERO SUGAR
Entrant INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Idea Creation INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Production INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Production 2 MADHOUSE STUDIO Alcobendas, SPAIN
Production 3 GIANTS & TOYS Stockholm, SWEDEN
Post Production INGO Stockholm, SWEDEN
Credits
Name Company Position
Björn Ståhl Ingo Stockholm Executive Creative Director
Simon Kraft Ingo Stockholm Art Director
Anna Werkell Ingo Stockholm Copywriter
Ylva Jakobson Ingo Stockholm Account Director
Markus Söderberg INGO Stockholm Planner
Stefan Kindgren INGO Stockholm Technical Director
Alexander Lundvall INGO Stockholm Graphic Designer
Alexandra Andersson Ingo Stockholm Agency Producer
Isabelle Brynholt Ingo Stockholm Account Manager
Felix Picker The Coca-Cola Company Content Creativity Senior Manager
Laura Fisher Disney Partnerships EMEA Disney
Catherine Douglas Disney Partnerships EMEA Disney

Why is this work relevant for Entertainment?

How could Coca-Cola make hard-to-impress Star Wars-fans as hyped for their limited edition Star Wars-cans as for the release of the final installment in the Star Wars saga? Coca-Cola decided to transform one of their most important distribution-channels, the vending machine, into a fan-powered brand experience. The machine allowed fans to use their brain power to battle for the limited cans which drove engagement for Coca-Cola's sponsorship, but also made every Star Wars fan’s dream of using “The Force”, come true.

Background

At the end of 2019, it was time for the long awaited last installment in the Star Wars Saga – The Rise of Skywalker, to premiere across the world. Being in a long partnership with Disney, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar has been part of promoting the latest Star Wars films since 2015. Being a famous, mainstream brand comes with the challenge of having trouble being credible in niche contexts. Sponsorships might end up feeling forced upon rather than appreciated and relevant. So for the new film, Coca-Cola wanted to drive relevance for their product among cinema-goers and Star Wars fans from all generations, through an integrated campaign led by an engaging brand experience.The focus for the experience was the distribution of the six special edition Coca-Cola Zero Sugar Star Wars cans that was created before the release of the film and the key markets were France and Germany especially.

Describe the creative idea

To spark interest in collecting the special edition branded cans and highlight the partnership, Coca-Cola decided to create an unforgettable brand-experience, by making every Star Wars fan’s biggest dream come true: A chance to try The Force in real life. The solution: Feel the Force Machine, the world’s first interactive vending machine powered by the force of actual brain waves. Fans got a chance to battle for a Coke with their minds, by wearing EEG-headsets that analyzed the electric activity in the user’s brain stem. The one who concentrated the hardest, was able to move the playing can to their side. The machine toured cinemas and key venues in Europe, where fans stood in line for hours to try it. The overall campaign was supported by TVC, OOH and in-store material that all worked to connect Coca-Cola Zero Sugar to “The Force” in different ways .

Describe the strategy

Knowing this was the last installment in the Star Wars Saga, Coca-Cola, with a brand history of bringing people together, wanted to create a digital experience that could bring value and drive interest among Star Wars fans from all generations. A challenge of course, was being respectful towards their love for the films and creating actual value through our product. Another challenge with this specific audience is that they’re used to seeing brands trying to piggyback on their beloved community, making them hard to impress. With this in mind, Coca-Cola decided to go beyond regular sampling and instead turn one of their most important distribution channels into something that could be engaging for Star Wars fans from all generations. And something that unites all fans, is the dream of using “The Force”, the central power of the Star Wars-Universe. Coca-Cola’s strategy was to turn sampling into a fan-driven experience, literally.

Describe the execution

To find a way to experience “The Force” in real life, we used EEG technology as the key element when building the machine. By using EEG-headsets, the vending-machine could analyze the electric activity in the user’s cerebral cortex. This technology made it possible for the player whose brain-activity measured the highest level of focus, to move the playing can to their side, leading to the machine dispensing one of the special edition cans for the winner, turning every consumption occasion into a personal, unforgettable interaction with their audience. In conjunction with the premiere of The Rise of Skywalker, the machine toured Star wars-events and cinemas on the key markets. People queued for hours to integrate with it. Simultaneously Coca-Cola ran an integrated campaign, pushing the branded cans and connecting Coca-Cola Zero Sugar to “The Force".

Describe the outcome

Through Feel the Force Machine, Coca-Cola managed to create a vending-machine, powered by the brain force of actual Star Wars fans, that made for an engaging, personal and entertaining drinking-experience that fans stood in line to try on Star Wars events and cinemas all over Europe. The integrated campaign, led by the Feel the Force Machine, generated great results within the target-group, that affected sales and brand love on the key markets: FRANCE, Lead market - In-cinema volume + 53% vs 2018 - Highest value share for 2 years – 20.9% (Nov) - Surpassed Brand love KPIs: +1.1pt vs 1pt target - In-store value share +8.9pts vs 2018 - 173m impressions from paid & organic media GERMANY - In-cinema volume +34% vs previous month - Significant YoY volume uplift of +27% vs Nov 2018