Thursday, August 27, 2009

OK is not enough

Yesterday at G HQ we were discussing products and/or brands that seemed like a good idea at the time but never made it for one reason or another, and OK Soda came up.

For younger readers, a bit of history.

The Coca-Cola Company did international market research in the late 80s and found that 'Coke' was the second most recognisable word across all languages in the world.

The first recognisable word word was 'OK'. No-brainer for the Coca Cola people.
Who could pass up the opportunity for numbers 1 AND 2?
World domination would surely follow...

So to take advantage of this opportunity OK Soda was born.
The subsequent soft launch in 1993 was supported by marketing targeted at the 'slacker' generation (late Gen X/ early Gen Y) ie young people who didn't pay much attention to advertising.

And if advertising often aims to associate a 'feeling' with the brand,  then how postmodern clever-dick to associate with the feeling of disillusionment with the products of 20th century capitalism.

Despite the cool package (see pic) and one of the most arch tag lines in the history of advertising:

'Whats the point of OK Soda? Well, what's the point of anything?

It didn't fly and the project was canned 7 months later.

Ahead if it's time, maybe.
The environment wasn't quite ready for pessimism, defeatism and parodied self-indulgent.
If it were to launch today however....

In typical postmodern paradoxical circular-irony, there would indeed have been a market for these fictional anti-products used as part of the promo for the Sex Pistols movie 'The Great Rock'n'Roll Swindle some 13 years earlier, had they been made commercially available.

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