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Coca Cola's latest campaign will be launched online before mass media
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Coca Cola India is launching its latest campaign for Sprite, the second-largest selling carbonated drink in India, on the Internet. This is the first time the cola major is breaking a campaign for one of its brands online, giving the electronic medium a miss.

The digital campaign will be launched in partnership with In.com on August 8 and will be preceded by an online contest that will run for a day on August 7.

The electronic campaign will be aired only two days later on August 10.

"In a psychological sense, launching the campaign online is a big, big, big move," says Srinivas Murthy, general manager (Flavors), Coca-Cola India. The company is known to have advertising and marketing budgets of close to 30-35 per cent of its overall revenues.

In the two days that the campaign is being aired online, Coca Cola expects close to 4 million views. In.com has a daily traffic of 9-10 million users online and the company has ensured that it gets a minimum of 2 million flashes (views) and is also running other activities to drive traffic to its site.

"There are 60 million online users who are predominantly the youth - our core target market - and we feel that this medium gives us a relevant way to engage with them as they come online to get their news, music and surf," says Murthy, who plans to grow his online spends exponentially over the coming years.

FMCG companies in India spend approximately 1-3 per cent of the overall budgets on the digital medium as compared to 10 per cent in countries like the US and the UK. However, with growing broadband usage and rising internet-enabled mobile phones in India, marketers are now looking at increasing their digital spends.

FMCG companies like Hindustan Unilever, Proctor & Gamble, Cadbury's and Tata Tea have already increased their digital ad budgets up to 8-10 per cent for individual brands.

"Over the next 12-18 months, online spends on the medium will be comparable to those in the West," Pushkar Sane, chief digital officer, North and South Asia, Starcom MediaVest Group, had said in an earlier interview to Business Standard.

The new campaign will see Sprite building on its Seedhi baat no bakwaas proposition, with communication around Fridge Mein Jayega Bade Kaam Ayega for the 1.25-litre fridge pack. For instance, the online contest will bring in interactivity as internet users view eight seconds of the Sprite commercial and will have to complete the rest. The first six participants who guess the ending would win Nokia multimedia phones.

Besides digital and electronic, the campaign - which is conceptualised by Ajay Gahlaut, group creative director, Ogilvy & Mather, Delhi and directed by Shoojit Sircar from Rising Sun Films - will also use the outdoor, out-of-home, on-ground activations and radio and print as it builds on the message Fridge Mein Jayega Bade Kaam Ayega. The total duration of the campaign will be eight weeks.

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