In 2009, Coca-Cola launched its “Open Happiness” campaign. For nearly eight years, customers everywhere were familiar with the phrase, “A Coke and a smile.” But the soft drink giant abandoned the “happiness” angle in 2016, citing that happiness, as a concept, had become overused.
“Everything is about happiness,” said the company’s global vice-president of creative, connections and digital, Rodolfo Echeverria. “Happiness is an over-utilized word in current, contemporary culture.”
In some ways, Echeverria is correct. People are quick to judge, and inauthentic joy has become somewhat of a trope in the marketing world that should be avoided. However, other examples demonstrate the world is still intent on selling—and buying—joy. Between the quick popularity of Pharrell’s “Happy”, the iconic McDonald’s “I’m Lovin’ It” campaign, and so many other examples around us, it’s clear that you’re not going to want to abandon the idea of the “joy campaign” just yet.
In today’s proliferation of negative digital noise, building a connection to joy could be exactly what differentiates your brand. However, an empty promise of simple happiness isn’t enough to form sustained loyalty with the modern consumer, nor is it enough to create an engaging campaign that consumers will share.
As marketers of technology products and solutions, we often look to consumer marketing trends when building our campaigns. After all, we are marketing our tech brands to people. Ultimately, someone is making a purchase decision, and that person has wants, needs and desires that need to be addressed. But as we’ve seen, it’s not enough to script joy into our strategy and expect results.
In order to reach today’s technology customer, you can look to the consumer world to refocus your marketing efforts on authentic, experiential immersion that clearly demonstrates your product’s potential for delivering joy. When joy is adequately captured and authentically displayed, modern customers embrace brands. In turn, they become brand advocates, driving the momentum of your campaigns even further through social sharing.
Appealing to a New Type of Consumer