The History of Coca-Cola

(Part 2)


In the 1980’s, Coca-Cola, found it self-loosing the consumer war with Pepsi. The only thing keeping Coca-cola from loosing money, was simply the availability of the product. Influenced by the market share decreasing in the prior years, `New Coke’ as they called it, was the name of Coca-Cola’s new product. The new formula was sweeter with less `tang’ as the original. After nearly 4 million dollars of research, consumers were devastated, outraged, and plainly enough, didn’t care for the new formulation. Soon enough people were hoarding over the left over cases of the original product. Newsweek reported that people were selling cases for $30 a case. It showed that people grew accustomed to Coca-Cola’s original taste. For over a hundred years Coca-Cola had convinced North Americans that Coke was a part of their lives, of their culture. For them to take it away, it was compared to `stomping on the American Flag. This was the first flavor change of Coca-Cola since its creation in 1886, over 100 years prior (Solar Navigator). Because of consumer reaction, the original formula was reissued in June of 1985. Was this all just a marketing scheme? Did Coca-Cola deliberately make its new soft drink inferior to its original?

While researching this topic I came across a number of articles and books that evaluated the creation, and end of this `New Coke’ formula. Barbara Mikkelson describes, the urban myth that Coca-Cola’s new product was a scam for the further increase in the original formulas sales. Although this assumption was proved false, its still makes one think, why would coca-cola change their beloved formula after so long? Is taste even the issue? Or is it the profits that are seen from that taste?

The overall message is that; originality is better that differentially. Though Coca-Cola’s plan to change their beloved soda after 100 years of idea did fail, what it did do, was make people love to the original product even more that before the new formula. It was said to be one of the biggest marketing flops and even theory that it was all a planned marketing scheme. Either way, in the end, `new coke’ changed `old coke’ forever.


Works Cited


Allen, Frederick. Secret Formula: How Brilliant Marketing and
Relentless Salesmanship Made Coca-Cola the Best-Known Product in the World. HarperBusiness.1995.

`Coca Cola History.’ Solar Navigator. 3 March 2007.

Friedman, Ted. `The World of The World of Cola-Cola.’ Communicatiom
Reaearch.Theory Eserver. 3 March 2007.

Greising, David. I’d Like the World to Buy a Coke: The Life and Leadership
of Roberto Goizueta. Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated. 1999.

Haig, Matt. `New Coke.’ Brand Failures: The Truth About The 100 Biggest
BrandMistakes of All Time. Philidelphia: Kogan Page, 2003. 10-15.

Mikkelson, Barbra. `Knew Coke.’ Snopes. Ed. David Mikkelson. 2 May
1999. 2 March 2007.

`Roberto Goizueta.’ Answers Corporation.

Ross,Michael E. `It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time.’ MSNBC. 22
April 2005. 3 March 2007.