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association football Advertising and promotion campaigns of coca-cola in the euro

Advertising & Promotion Campaigns of Coca-Cola in the European Union
Executive Summary                1

Coca-Cola, which was named Beverage Industry's 1999 Company of the Year, has embraced a decentralized operating philosophy, recognizing that each market in which they operate has "different demands which must be met in unique ways"1.  Coca-Cola Enterprises (The European bottler for Coke) CEO Henry Schimberg has stated that although they have well-defined general policies, much of the responsibility to succeed and make decisions has to come from each local market, not headquarters in Atlanta.2
While it may seem that firms have to choose between the extremes of a global vs. customized approach, in practice the method used is often a combination of both, "blending uniformity with individual area differences".3  Coca-Cola, for instance, has previously had a successful international soccer-star campaign which featured the same common theme, but with a different celebrity athlete for each targeted country.  Such pan-European advertising is becoming increasingly popular and common. 4   This strategy has built a strong global brand awareness not only in Europe but throughout the world.  Based on this strong brand awareness, Coca-Cola tailors each ad to a specific country to achieve global sales success through local penetration.
 EU Promotional Campaigns         2

Coca-Cola uses a multitude of promotional vehicles to attract new coke drinkers and retain current ones.  One of the strongest promotional venues has been through television and sporting events (mainly soccer) but in the nineties the internet is strongly becoming a popular means to increase promotions.
 Sports Promotion
 Coke takes a global approach to its sports promotion.  In 1997 they established managers for each of the different sports that Coke sponsors worldwide.5  This global coordination effort helps to oversee major marketing campaigns, however it also still allows unique advertising techniques and messages to be conveyed in each country.  
 Television
Recently, Coca-Cola has hired the services of TeleVest, a New York media agency specialized in purchasing television airtime, to select and locate TV series to purchase or sponsor in order to more effectively reach European television viewers.  By purchasing programs, Coca-Cola will be able to license them to various markets with contracts stipulating that Coca-Cola receive a certain amount of free ad-time spread across other shows on the station.  This strategy seems attractive especially as most international markets have national networks (such as TF1, A2, or FR3 in France) but no local stations. 6
Website Promotion
As expected, Coca-Cola has not just a European website, but several websites for certain countries in the EC; the countries offering such sites are France, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, Germany, and Norway.  Upon examining these various sites, we concluded that they are another example of Coca-Cola's decentralized marketing campaign.  Each country's management team has the freedom to market itself the way they want, as long as certain guidelines are followed.  In France, the site (www.coca-cola.fr) is presented as a web-zine, offering the latest in music and sports-related news, obviously targeting a young public; In Spain, the site (www.siempre-on.com) offers coupons which you can print out at home, indicating that Coca-Cola reaches a price conscious audience.  Denmark's site (www.coca-cola.dk) is primarily a contest site currently featuring trips to Australia.  Thus, Coca-Cola customizes its web campaign for each country in order to more effectively tap into people's feelings, integrating any culturally relevant issues or preferences into the sites' presentation.
Specific Promotional Activities
The following are specific promotional activities that are currently being done in the various countries in the European Union.
Spain
Telefonica Interactiva entered into a promotional arrangement with Coca-Cola Espana aimed at boosting Teleline's user base.  Telefonica Interactiva, Internet subsidiary of Telefonica, has entered into a promotional arrangement with Coca-Cola Espana aimed at boosting Teleline's user base. Under the deal, people who buy 20 half-litre Coca-Cola bottles will receive a year's Internet access for only Pta4k Vs Pta13k/y on average at present. 7
Coca-Cola launched "Dress-up with Coca-Cola Light" promotion in Spain in co-operation with clothing retailer Cortefiel.  A consumer who buys the soft drink at a bar can have a special card marked by the waiter, building up points giving discounts of up to 20% at outlets of Cortefiel's Springfield and Women's Secret chains.  The promotion ... more

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Political Correctness:

The University of Southern California:
The Teddy Bear Massacre

Like so many other traditions, the burning of the bruin was put on the chopping block recently. The long running University of Southern California spirit activity consisted of throwing a large stuffed bear in a bon fire the night before the football game against their rival, the University of California at Los Angeles. The Black Student Union and other student organizations recently questioned the event. Their concern was that the event too closely resembled past lynching of African Americans in the American south.

This raises the question of whether it is appropriate to censor ideas that are not created to offend certain groups. Political correctness, the underlying ideal, is the "particular set of attitudes about the world that its proponents maintain should be actively promoted." [Clark 369] Proponents of political correctness, or PC, had good intentions in devising the idea, but it has serious flaws. Although political correctness was founded with good intent, it does more harm than good.

The most noticeable example of harm is how PC proponents try to please everyone at the same time. The burning of the bruin was just one of many activities held during the week before the big UCLA game. The idea being that everyone could find something that they could identify with and rally around their school. If the burning was intentionally created to represent or oppress the offended students, the event would have been banned long ago. However, as Matt Hutaff stated in his editorial in the Daily Trojan:

"It's about school pride. It's love for the things that brought the university to where it is today. It is traditions that define a school; it's student body and its heritage. Strip the school of its traditions and all you have is a school that isn't worth rallying behind." [5]

In appeasing one group, it seems the university neglected another group. It seems that the lesson that one cannot please everyone all the time still needs to be learned.

Another lesson that needs to be learned is to meet offensive language head on instead of hiding from it. This cannot happen, however, if the college is sheltering us from it. It is the duty of the university to teach us how to live in the real world. How are they going to protect us from what we do not want to hear out there? The answer is they cannot, and the sheltered individuals are left unprepared to confront real world situations that will offend them. As Irene Clark points out, an article by the National Association of Scholars "asserts that it is the role of higher education to enable students to grapple with contrary or unpleasant ideas and that to shield them from such ideas will be detrimental in the long run." [373] Unfortunately, there are bad things in the world. There is no way to change that. Ignoring them will not make them go away. Eventually the sheltered must face them. If a school hides these things from its students, they will be unprepared to confront them.

Even if PC proponents succeeded in their goal of eliminating offensive actions and language, they can never kill the ideas behind them. In private these ideas can grow and fester unchecked. In public, the offenders can be identified. When forced to hide these ideas, the offenders will still express them in secret. When these people are allowed to express their thoughts and opinions in public, the rest of the world is able to watch what they are doing. If they are not aware that they are being offensive, they can be told, also.

As Irene Clark states:

"...whether or not we agree with speech codes, such codes, explicitly or implicitly, are not entirely new, nor do they prevent racist or sexist thought in private." [372]

As Clark stated earlier, PC is not a new idea. Various social movements have tried to implement this restraint before. It has not worked in the past and it is not gaining much ground today. As John Ellis states in Clark's book:

"...we can ask that people who want to take us through the fantasy yet one more time first confront the lessons of history that show how disastrous 'politically correct' ... more

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