The Taste the Feeling campaign was launched this year

The Taste the Feeling campaign was launched this year

The head of Coca-Cola HBC has said a test launch in Russia for Coca-Cola's new one-brand strategy helped trademark Coke drive against market declines.

In the first indications of how The Coca-Cola Co's newly-implemented marketing plan is faring, Dimitris Lois told just-drinks today that despite double-digit volumes falls for the market, trademark Coke was down just 2% in calendar 2015. Lois said this was because of the new strategy along with the launch of Coke Zero in Russia.

 "There is an excellent efficiency in investing behind one brand and not different brands. So that is for us a major improvement - a step change and a new era," he said.

In the middle of last year, Russia was one of three global markets to test-run the one-brand strategy, which comprises a "common identity" for brand Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero and Coca-Cola Life. The other test markets were the UK and Chile. The plan was rolled out globally in January alongside the 'Taste the Feeling' campaign, which will run throughout this year.

Lois said he is firmly behind the campaign and less than a week after the launch in Paris, CCHBC had rolled it out in several markets, including Romania.

"Four of five days after Paris, we had our global leadership contest in Bucharest," Lois said. "The whole of Bucharest was branded with elements of Taste the Feeling."

He added: "The campaign is awesome. We haven't seen anything like it for the past ten years. Why? Because this campaign balances the extrinsic and intrinsic. It provides clarity. We just love it."

Lois was speaking after CCHBC released its full-year results, with sales and profits down as the company faced currency headwinds.