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Industry Soft Drinks
Media Design & Branding
Market Italy
Released April 2009

Credits & Description

Category: Drinks
Product/Service: COCA-COLA
Date of First Appearance: Apr 13 2009 12:00AM
Entrant Company: THE COCA-COLA COMPANY, Atlanta, USA
Chairman: Paolo Pininfarina (Pininfarina S.p.a.)
Group Design Director: Vince Voron (The Coca-Cola Company)
Design Manager: James Cha (The Coca-Cola Company)
Vice President Design: David Butler (The Coca-Cola Company)
Vice President Jet Innovation Program: Gene Farrell (The Coca-Cola Company)
Manager Fountain Engineering: Gregg Carpenter (The Coca-Cola Company)
Senior Mechanical Designer: Dave Harvey (The Coca-Cola Company)
Media placement: Fountain Beverage Dispenser/sparkling And Still Beverages - 50+ Retail And Restaurant Locations In Atlanta, GA And Southern California, USA - 13 April 2009 - Current

Describe the challenges and key objectives
With more than 500,000 fountain dispensers in the USA, the opportunity to engage consumers more effectively, millions of times per day, is enormous. In the past, we designed what we could manufacture; today, we manufacture what we can design. Principle design objective: Integrate a variety of complex functions into one footprint and make it simple for consumers. The main design challenge was to create forms that embrace Coca-Cola’s 120-year heritage, at the same time propelling it into the future. We wanted a design that was recognizable as Coca-Cola, and that would endure and remain relevant for the next 10 years.

Describe the brief from the client
Create fountain equipment design that borrows from the most recognized and loved iconic brand elements of Coca-Cola and also engages 21st century consumers in a fresh, relevant way. Create competitive differentiation and foundation upon which the fountain beverage sector can achieve significant and sustainable growth. Through holistic design, create 3D forms that entice consumers from 20 feet away and enable intuitive interaction within arm’s reach. Develop consumer touch points that facilitate effortless engagement while navigating to the flavour of choice. The Coca-Cola Freestyle™ design should encompass a dynamic experience that attracts consumers and produces a premium stage for 100+ beverages.

Describe how you arrived at the final design
Holistic design comprises proprietary form elements to excite and simplify the consumer experience. Key elements are the touch screen, pour button, ellipse, contour cradle and ADA interface. The serial layout of form elements and lighting intuitively sequence the user experience. Fine materials have been employed for all consumer “touch points.” The contour cradle form element visually and physically links all of the consumer interaction touch points together. The result is a compelling design that amplifies the Coke brand in a modern way and creates a personal “for-me” space in which consumers can engage and dispense more than 100 branded beverages.

Give some indication of how successful the outcome was in the market
People are delighted and engaged by Coca-Cola Freestyle™. One consumer said: “it’s like my i-Pod married a soda fountain.” It has thousands of fans on Facebook. Inspired by the design, consumers (in areas where it is not yet available) produced commercials and posted them to YouTube. “A…woman…steps up to a shiny silver soda-fountain machine…and plants a fat kiss on its side. If great design is all about creating a bond between your product and your customer, this… brokers the ardor between a consumer and her…Coke.” Fast Company, Oct09, “Masters of Design.” Retailers experienced increase in fountain servings and overall sales.