@@img1ATLANTA, GA – July 2007 – Twenty-five years ago, Diet Coke burst onto the scene and forever changed the beverage landscape. Today, the global brand is the #1 diet sparkling beverage in the world, and its launch is viewed as one of the most successful in beverage history.
“When Diet Coke debuted in 1982, the brand struck a chord by inviting people to drink it ‘Just for the Taste of It.’ Offering the authenticity of the Coca-Cola name with no calories, Diet Coke was exactly what people wanted,” said Katie Bayne, chief marketing officer, Coca-Cola North America. “A quarter-century later, Diet Coke remains the world’s favorite no-calorie sparkling beverage and continues to refresh people every day with the one-of-a-kind taste they love.”
A Style All Its Own
From the beginning, Diet Coke has had a confident, sophisticated voice that epitomizes adult style and a life well lived. A host of celebrities – including chart-topping singers, athletes, actors and actresses and fashion models – have embraced Diet Coke as their own. Many appeared in print, television and radio ads for Diet Coke marketing campaigns over time.
Diet Coke has been a sponsor of the Academy Awards®, the biggest entertainment program on television, and the brand’s current marketing campaign premiered with three new commercials during this year’s Oscars® telecast. The campaign, which carries the tagline, “Yours, Diet Coke,” shows how people feel about Diet Coke when they drink it, and as importantly, how they feel when it’s not there. The ads depict scenarios that reinforce how Diet Coke is there for people who love the brand.
“Since its launch, Diet Coke has been synonymous with stylish sophistication,” said Bayne. “Through the years, Diet Coke marketing and advertising has reflected and embraced pop culture, and the brand has become a global icon that embodies great cola taste with an undeniable sense of style.”
A Breakthrough Product and Positioning
Diet Coke helped define the low-calorie segment of the beverage industry at a time when sales of “diet” beverages were a fraction of what they are today.
“For almost 100 years, until the introduction of Diet Coke, the flagship Coca-Cola name had never been extended to another brand,” said Philip Mooney, director, Archives, The Coca-Cola Company. “The launch of Diet Coke pioneered groundbreaking product innovations in the beverage industry and helped to accelerate the success of a Company that now offers more than 400 different beverage brands around the world.”
Diet Coke has been an innovation leader for the past 25 years. Since the launch of Caffeine-free Diet Coke®, the first extension of the Diet Coke brand, in 1983, Diet Coke has kept pace with its fans’ changing desires for variety with new product offerings. This tradition continues today with the introduction of Diet Coke Plus®, which provides a great, refreshing taste and a good source of essential vitamins and minerals.
An Unconditional Loyalty for Their Brand
Much of Diet Coke’s success can be attributed to the millions of Diet Coke drinkers who profess unconditional loyalty and love for their favorite beverage. Many people, like Samantha Dumond, of Roswell, Ga., jump-start their day with a Diet Coke and consider the brand a trusted ally and an inextricable part of their lives.
“I’ve been drinking Diet Coke since I was a senior in high school, and every morning I have one with breakfast,” said Dumond, 34, a mother of two. “There is nothing more refreshing than a cold Diet Coke to get my day started. I love my Diet Coke – just as much as I love my husband … almost.”
Diet Coke fans also voice their dedication to the brand by joining fan groups, such as “I Love Diet Coke” and “All Girls Love Diet Coke” on popular social networking Web sites. Recently Diet Coke became part of a global phenomenon when countless videos that showed people creating enormous “geysers” by combining Diet Coke and popular candy, Mentos, were posted all over the Internet. Today, thousands of videos of the Diet Coke and Mentos experiment are posted on YouTube alone.
A Global Phenomenon
Over the past 25 years, Diet Coke has become an international household name, refreshing people around the world.
1982: Diet Coke is introduced on July 29 in a gala celebration from the stage at Radio City Music Hall in New York. By 1983, Diet Coke becomes the #1 diet sparkling beverage in the United States. Just six months after the U.S. launch, Diet Coke – called Coca-Cola Light in some markets – debuts in Australia, Costa Rica, Great Britain, Norway, South Africa and many other countries.
1984: Diet Coke becomes the #3 sparkling beverage in the United States, a title it has held for more than 23 years. By 1986, Diet Coke becomes the #1 low-calorie sparkling beverage in the world.
Today the brand, including both Diet Coke and Coca-Cola Light, is available in 173 countries and has a 40 percent share of the global diet sparkling beverage segment.
A Celebration for Everyone
To celebrate the brand’s quarter-century, limited edition vintage Diet Coke T-shirts, 25th anniversary contour bottles and other commemorative items will be available through My Coke RewardsT. Diet Coke fans can also enter to win several 25th anniversary sweepstakes and contests in popular magazines, such as Condé Nast Traveler, In Style and People.
Special 25th anniversary Diet Coke silver sleek cans will be available exclusively in the Atlanta area, Diet Coke’s birthplace. Also, Diet Coke rolled out the red carpet to celebrate its silver anniversary as part of the city’s 4th of July celebration at the new World of Coca-Cola and Centennial Olympic Park, which featured live jazz music and entertaining dance performances.
“This 25th anniversary celebrates the long love affair between Diet Coke and the loyal fans who have made it a global icon,” said Bayne. “Millions of people around the world have made Diet Coke part of their well-balanced lifestyle, and for decades to come, we’ll continue to refresh them with the great cola taste and style that they know and love.”
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company is the world’s largest beverage company. Along with Coca-Cola®, recognized as the world’s most valuable brand, the Company markets four of the world’s top five nonalcoholic sparkling beverage brands, including Diet Coke®, Fanta® and Sprite®, and a wide range of other beverages, including diet and light beverages, waters, juices and juice drinks, teas, coffees, energy and sports drinks. Through the world’s largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company’s beverages at a rate exceeding 1.4 billion servings each day. For more information about The Coca-Cola Company, please visit our website at www.thecoca-colacompany.com.