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UK: CCE unveils "three-cola strategy"

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Coca-Cola Enterprises has lined up a three-pronged attack to promote its flagship brands in the UK next year.

At a press briefing in London yesterday (7 December), the company unveiled plans for Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Zero and Diet Coke for 2007. While the original Coke will focus on football, the latter two will target the different sexes, with Coke Zero living up to its nickname of 'Bloke Coke'. The introduction of what the company called "the three-cola strategy" is designed to stabilise the group's CSD portfolio.

"The Coke portfolio is driving the growth in the colas segment," said CCE's head of carbonates, Anita Huntley. "We are confident that through integrated marketing and merchandising, the three brands can deliver even further growth during 2007."

The first quarter of next year will see each of the brand's take turns at heading the band's portfolio. A communications campaign for Coke Zero will break in January, which will lead to a new television advert in March. CCE declined to give specific details for the campaign.

In February, meanwhile, Coke will take centre stage, with CCE running a slightly different version of its football promotion, whereby one consumer won GBP250,000 for his football team to spend on a new player. The new campaign, entitled 'buy a player for your club', has a GBP10m transfer fund, with one in every two consumers winning between GBP0.50 and GBP250,000 for their team - at the same time, one drinker will win GBP10,000 for themselves.

The quarter wraps up with the relaunch of 'the Diet Coke break' - a campaign which will position the brand squarely at the feet of UK women. The campaign, which focuses on women admiring a 'hunk' and gossiping about him, will appear on television, cinema, billboards and in print from 22 January.

The campaign will be supported by an on-pack promotion enabling consumers to win a Diet Coke break in March. Also next year, Diet Coke will sponsor a reality television programme on ITV2, in which the wives and girlfriends of footballers compete against each other in running a shop. 'WAGs Boutique' airs on the channel early next year.

The company has put aside a GBP8m media spend for Diet Coke in 2007 - the brand's largest-ever quarterly media investment.

Separately, CCE said that it will cease production of its Diet Coke with Lemon and Diet Coke with Lime flavour variants next year, and replace the pair with Diet Coke with Citrus Zest. The limited edition offering will be available from January.


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