Coca-Cola’s Freestyle soda dispenser gave consumers a new, engaging way to create custom drink mixes. The brand enhanced the experience with an app that let users save mixes, share them on social media, and receive special offers for Coke products.
Objective and Context:
Coca-Cola sought to integrate Internet-of-Things technology to redesign its touch-screen “Freestyle” soda dispenser’s user experience by giving consumers more control and personalization via their smartphones.
Coca-Cola Freestyle’s target audience is adults, ages 16 to 34, who are frequent visitors of restaurants, movie theatres, and convenience stores where Coca-Cola Freestyles are found. With soft drink sales decreasing and the demand for personalization and customization rising, the Coca-Cola Freestyle was created with the goal to keep this demographic fully engaged, socially involved, and buying Coke products.
Research showed that consumers enjoyed Freestyle’s custom mix functionality, as well as its modern design and functionality. Coca-Cola designed an app to serve as a mobile extension of the Freestyle experience, allowing consumers to save and share their favorite mixes.
Overall Campaign Execution:
Coca-Cola Freestyle launched as a cross-channel experience involving mobile, social, and the Freestyle Machine. Consumers’ drink preferences became social experience by leveraging the mobile app to create drinks and mixes, pour them at a Coca-Cola Freestyle Machine, and share their custom drink with their social network.
The Coca-Cola Freestyle apps were created native to both the iOS and Android platforms to ensure the best possible experience by leveraging the capabilities of each user’s device. In addition to the personalization and social sharing functions, the app also gave users access to special deals, opening multiple new channels of direct interaction between retailers and consumers.
More than 400 different chains of restaurants, movie theatres, convenience stores, supermarkets, drug stores, and amusement parks have adopted Coca-Cola Freestyle, reporting increased drink purchases versus legacy fountains.
The long-term goal for Coca-Cola Freestyle is wide-range adoption of the technology and machines. This novel personalization of a soda pour, coupled with the ability to share mixes with others is a brand experience that supports more than 40,000 machines in approximately 30,500 worldwide locations. With more than a million downloads, the app has been well-received by both Android and iPhone users.