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8-Digital Strategies from beverage giant Coca-Cola to close out your 4th quarter strong!

As businesses embark on the last quarter of 2020, it is wise to step back, review, and revise your marketing efforts. Today’s business leaders must “Manage the Present and Invent the Future” Developing strategies to amplify your message will help you reach and engage with your target audience. The Coca-Cola Company is 128-years old and does a great job of balancing tradition with innovation.

Wendy Clark, SVP, Integrated Marketing Communications, and Capabilities, for The Coca-Cola Company, reveals the 8-strategies the company uses to keep sustainable and growing. Take inventory of how well your business adheres to the following:

How – Using Starbuck's new delivery as an example.

Become Shareworthy - create content and make decisions that are appealing enough to be shared on social media platforms. In today’s world, social media users are the best forms of advertising. Customers are constantly connected to the internet and viewing the content in real-time. If something out of the ordinary or intriguing occurs customers are instantly hashtagging, sharing, or posting videos and photos. Many customers post their Starbucks purchases on social media. When a customer receives their Starbucks purchase via delivery they may be inclined to Snapchat the beverage, post on Instagram with the hashtag #starbucksdelivery, or tweet about the quick service and convenience of the beverage being delivered.

Embrace your new salesforce - It is important to know your new market. The marketplace is constantly changing as generations change and evolve. Today’s marketplace has more millennials than ever before. Millennials are unlike any other generation. Millennials grew up with technology and the mindset of instant gratification. Millennials will spend more on coffee, want to be a part of something new, and will appreciate the instant gratification of having coffee brought to them. (especially during COVID)

Speed trumps perfection - must be able to move with the speed of the marketplace move in real-time. Must be able to move quickly without perfections. Consumers expect you to answer inquiries in real-time. In order for the Starbucks delivery service to be successful, Starbucks will need to operate in real-time and answer orders quickly. If customers have a question regarding the service or a product they will expect a quick reply or they may lose the sell.

Simplify - It is important to simplify and streamline the business model. By simplifying you to minimize complications and increase speed. Starbucks practices a simplified business model. The product selection is minimal. The employees have designated job duties and they operate in an assembly line fashion. Starbucks manages to have a quick turn-around on products being placed in customers' hands due to its simple business model.

Disrupt - need to disrupt ourselves to avoid being disrupted. Change existing business models and plans. Organizations need to shake things up in order to stay relevant. Starbucks providing delivery services helps keeps them relevant among the competition. Panera has already started offering delivery. However, Panera does not start delivery until 11:00 am. Starbucks is not currently falling behind, and we all know Starbucks is busier than it is not. Starbucks will want to make changes while they are thriving rather than making changes to try and stay afloat.

No status quo- businesses cannot accept the status quo. Starbucks could easily keep doing what they are doing and say no to a delivery service. Starbucks has loyal customers that have no problem leaving the house 10 minutes early to make sure they can stop at Starbucks. Accepting the status quo is not acceptable. Starbucks has an opportunity to sell more products while customers are stuck in the office or at an appointment by providing a delivery service.

Play well - connect with many people and moving parts in real-time. Coca-Cola connects people in other countries by allowing them to send cokes through a machine to each other. Starbucks has an app and perhaps could consider a way for customers to send drinks to other users through the app. The app would follow the premise of paying it forward, and in the meantime connect the various Starbucks customers one drink at a time.

Work that matters- create value that far exceeds the value for themselves. Make the world better. Doing well, by doing good. Starbucks has a charitable organization called the Starbucks Foundation. The Starbucks Foundation makes various donations from youth opportunities to access to clean water.

This blog is part of a series on GROWING BRANDS with a focus is to help independent contractors and small business grow their brand cost-effectively for a minimal investment of time instead of paid promotions. Dr. Rutley is a business and marketing consultant, professor, curriculum designer, and a job coach helping professionals’ self-brand and grow their careers. -

Carla is a five-time entrepreneur who has over 25 years of senior-level marketing experience working with high-profile organizations such as Summerfest, Country USA, United Way, Harley-Davidson, and more. Her expertise is in small business operations, public relations, lead generation, sales, and fundraising. She is available for workshops, seminars, training, and consulting. She has been an advocate for women’s professional development for over 20 years, leading groups such as Tempo, Milwaukee Women Inc., Professional Women’s Network, and others. Her book on career development strategies is set to be released through Emerson Agency of Baltimore, Maryland later this year.

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