Coca-Cola: The Real Story Behind the Real Thing

The Evolution of an American Icon

The Evolution of an American Icon

Coca-Cola didn’t become one of the world’s leading beverages in the United States by accident. 

With one hundred and twenty-three years of history marketing brands, slogans, commercials and a worldwide distribution network Coke has made itself the most recognized brand on the planet.

Click ahead to see 123 years of evolution!

Cocaine in Coca-Cola?

Coca-Cola was created in 1886.  The original ingredient included five ounces of coca leaf per gallon of syrup.  Author Rick Allen pointed out in his book, “Secret Formula”  “Fluid extract of the coca leaf is cocaine and was in the original Coca-Cola for about the first five years.”  Today the company uses a cocaine-free coca leaf extract which is prepared in Maywood, New Jersey.
Photo Courtesy: Aizar Raldes | AFP | Getty Images Source: "Secret Formula" by Rick Allen

Coca-Cola was created in 1886.  The original ingredient included five ounces of coca leaf per gallon of syrup.  Author Rick Allen pointed out in his book, “Secret Formula”  “Fluid extract of the coca leaf is cocaine and was in the original Coca-Cola for about the first five years.”  Today the company uses a cocaine-free coca leaf extract which is prepared in Maywood, New Jersey.

Coca-Cola Bottle Chronology

In 1886 Coca-Cola was a soda foundation beverage which cost five cents per glass. Next, the beverage became available in bottles. 1899 - The Hutchinson bottle was the style that was used briefly by Coca-Cola bottlers of Coca-Cola. 
Photo Courtesy & Source: The Coca-Cola Company

In 1886 Coca-Cola was a soda foundation beverage which cost five cents per glass. Next, the beverage became available in bottles.

1899 - The Hutchinson bottle was the style that was used briefly by Coca-Cola bottlers of Coca-Cola. 

1915 - Coca-Cola made a U.S. patent trademark of the contour bottle to bring distinction of the Coca-Cola brand. 

1950s - Coca-Cola offered a variety of package size drinks.  There was the contour bottle (6.5 ounce) and included 10, 12 and 26-ounce bottles.  Later in the 1960s, Coca-Cola cans became available.

1977 - Coke introduced the plastic bottle but by 1994 the drink was available in the 2 liter bottle.

How Many Coca-Cola Drinks are Sold Per Day?

When asked how many Coca-Cola drinks have been sold per day throughout the years   

1886 – Coca-Cola sold approximately 9 drinks per day

1920 – 6.5 million drinks per day (which included bottles and fountain drinks)

1950 - 50 million soft drinks were sold per day

1980 - 250 million Coca-Cola drinks were sold per day

2009 - It's estimated at nearly 1.6 billion per day

Coca-Cola Products

The Coca-Cola Company has grown into the world’s largest beverage company with nearly 500 brands with more than 3,000 products.  Their line includes sparkling beverages, juices, coffee, tea, sports drinks and packaged water.  Their billion dollar brands include Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero, Fanta, Sprite, Glaceau, Vitaminwater, Aquarius, Minute Maid, Powerade, Dasani, Georgia Coffee, Nestea and Sokenbicha.
Source & Photo Courtesy: The Coca-Cola Company

The Coca-Cola Company has grown into the world’s largest beverage company with nearly 500 brands with more than 3,000 products.  Their line includes sparkling beverages, juices, coffee, tea, sports drinks and packaged water. 

Their billion-dollar brands include Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero, Fanta, Sprite, Glaceau, Vitaminwater, Aquarius, Minute Maid, Powerade, Dasani, Georgia Coffee, Nestea and Sokenbicha.

The Advertising

The first Coca-Cola advertisement cited an affordable nickel price and was touted as ‘Delicious and Refreshing.’  By 1906, the company was spending half a million dollars annually for ads.  In 1909, Coca-Cola was proclaimed ‘the best advertised article’ in the nation.  Advertising spending topped $1 million by 1912 and doubled again before the Roaring Twenties.  In recent times their ad budget continues to grow, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle, “Coca-Cola spent $1.97 billion for prin
Photo Courtesy: The Coca-Cola CompanySource:  "The First Hundred Years Coca-Cola" by Anne Hoene Hoy

The first Coca-Cola advertisement cited an affordable nickel price and was touted as ‘Delicious and Refreshing.’  By 1906, the company was spending half a million dollars annually for ads.  In 1909, Coca-Cola was proclaimed ‘the best advertised article’ in the nation.  Advertising spending topped $1 million by 1912 and doubled again before the Roaring Twenties. 

In recent times their ad budget continues to grow, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle, “Coca-Cola spent $1.97 billion for print, radio and television advertisements in 2001.”

The Logo

The Coca-Cola logo was registered as a trademark in 1893.  The logo has remained the same in Spencerian script.  The only thing that changes is the backgrounds (red on white, white or red, disc, rectangles, etc.)
Photo Courtesy:  The Coca-Cola Company

The Coca-Cola logo was registered as a trademark in 1893.  The logo has remained the same in Spencerian script.  The only thing that changes is the backgrounds (red on white, white or red, disc, rectangles, etc.)

Coca-Cola Mascots

The first mascot, Santa Claus, was introduced in 1931.  Phil Mooney, Coca Cola’s Official Historian explains, “we started to think about Santa Claus.  Well, here’s a guy.  He’s gotta go all over the world in 24 hours.  He’s gotta be thirsty in the course of that evening.  So, let him have a Coca-Cola.”By 1993 Coca-Cola made a shift in advertising by introducing the “Always Coca-Cola” campaign with Polar Bears.  The ads provided innovative technical approach with computer animation.
Photo Courtesy & Source: The Coca-Cola Company

The first mascot, Santa Claus, was introduced in 1931.  Phil Mooney, Coca Cola’s Official Historian explains, “we started to think about Santa Claus.  Well, here’s a guy.  He’s gotta go all over the world in 24 hours.  He’s gotta be thirsty in the course of that evening.  So, let him have a Coca-Cola.”

By 1993 Coca-Cola made a shift in advertising by introducing the “Always Coca-Cola” campaign with Polar Bears.  The ads provided innovative technical approach with computer animation.

Commercials

Coca-Cola commercials are placed in the most popular platforms with the same message decades apart.  The Coca-Cola "Mean" Joe Green commercial aired during the 1980 Super bowl which remains one of the most memorable commercials of our time.  The Pittsburgh Steelers Defensive Back tosses his jersey to a young boy in gratitude for giving Joe Green his Coca-Cola.In 2009, the “Open Happiness” commercial debuted during American Idol.  This commercial is animated and musical but the message is the sam
Source & Photo Courtesy: The Coca-Cola Company & McCann Erickson

Coca-Cola commercials are placed in the most popular platforms with the same message decades apart.  The Coca-Cola "Mean" Joe Green commercial aired during the 1980 Super bowl which remains one of the most memorable commercials of our time.  The Pittsburgh Steelers Defensive Back tosses his jersey to a young boy in gratitude for giving Joe Green his Coca-Cola.

In 2009, the “Open Happiness” commercial debuted during American Idol.  This commercial is animated and musical but the message is the same it encourages us to enjoy Coke as one of life’s simple pleasures.

Coca-Cola Slogans

Since 1886 Coca-Cola has had notable slogans.  They have been catchy and memorable taglines.  Coca-Cola has used over 45 different slogans throughout the century.  Just to name a few, .  Which one is your favorite?
Source: The Coca-Cola Company

Since 1886 Coca-Cola has had notable slogans.  They have been catchy and memorable taglines.  Coca-Cola has used over 45 different slogans throughout the century.  Just to name a few, Drink Coca-Cola, It’s The Real Thing, Have A Coke And A Smile.  Which one is your favorite?

The Olympics

Coca-Cola has been partners with the Olympics for more than eighty years.  It was during the IX Olympic Summer Games when Coca-Cola made its first official appearance.  Shown here is a Coca-Cola stand at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics.
Photo Courtesy: The Coca-Cola Company Source: "The First Hundred Years Coca-Cola" by Anne Hoene Hoy

Coca-Cola has been partners with the Olympics for more than eighty years.  It was during the IX Olympic Summer Games when Coca-Cola made its first official appearance.  Shown here is a Coca-Cola stand at the 1928 Amsterdam Olympics.

Going Global

During World War II the Coca-Cola company decided to ship their soft drinks to United States military overseas.  It created loyal customers and international exposure. Today, the family contour of the Coca-Cola bottle is recognized all over the globe.   These bottles are in French, Amharic (Ethiopian language), Spanish, Arabic and Dutch.  In China Coca-Cola, ke kou ke le', can be loosely translated to "Delicious Happiness."
Source & Photo Courtesy: The Coca-Cola Company

During World War II the Coca-Cola company decided to ship their soft drinks to United States military overseas.  It created loyal customers and international exposure.

Today, the family contour of the Coca-Cola bottle is recognized all over the globe.   These bottles are in French, Amharic (Ethiopian language), Spanish, Arabic and Dutch.  In China Coca-Cola, ke kou ke le', can be loosely translated to "Delicious Happiness."

Coca-Cola is NOT Marketed in These Countries

Coca-Cola can be found almost anywhere.  The soft drink is sold in over 200 hundred countries but the Coca-Cola Company does NOT market their products to North Korea, Cuba, Burma, Iran and Sudan.
Source: The Coca-Cola Company

Coca-Cola can be found almost anywhere.  The soft drink is sold in over 200 hundred countries but the Coca-Cola Company does NOT market their products to North Korea, Cuba, Burma, Iran and Sudan.

The Future

Coke has come a long way from its soda fountain days.  Soon you will be able to make your own personalized Coca-Cola drink through the new Freestyle Jet machine. The device features of touch-tone screen allowing you to create your own variety of Coke.  There are 104 variations Coca-Cola company drinks including waters, energy drinks, carbonated and non-carbonated drinks.
Source & Photo Courtesy: The Coca-Cola Company

Coke has come a long way from its soda fountain days.  Soon you will be able to make your own personalized Coca-Cola drink through the new Freestyle Jet machine. The device features of touch-tone screen allowing you to create your own variety of Coke.  There are 104 variations Coca-Cola company drinks including waters, energy drinks, carbonated and non-carbonated drinks.

The Evolution of an American Icon

The Evolution of an American Icon
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