Coke Invests In Global Media Platform, Makes Its Own Media On The Side

Every company is a media company, Coke more so than others.

According to The New York Times, Coca-Cola is now an investor in Spotify, to the tune of $10 million.

Why would a beverage company join Fidelity Investments and Goldman Sachs in this latest round of funding for a streaming media company struggling to turn a profit? “Why not?” is the better question. Coke enjoys a market capitalization of $162 billion, so this small bet is one worth making.

Plus, smart brands (and Coke is certainly that) have long made an investment in culture and the arts. That’s partly what this is, although it’s not charitable giving, it’s about creating strategic alliances. And plenty of those may be born from this deal. As the music industry struggles for new footing, companies like Coke have an opportunity to play a significant role in reshaping the industry’s business model (and to sell more Coke in the process).

In an earlier story this week from The Times, we learn that the newly revamped (and soon to be released) is designed like a magazine.

The reorganized Web site will offer long form pieces on entertainment, the environment, health and sports. Although the content, which will largely be created by a team of freelancers, comes “with a point of view,” the company wants to be “a credible source.”

The last time the corporate Web site was redesigned was in 2005, “a lifetime in technology,” said Ashley Brown, director for digital communications and social media at the Coca-Cola Company in Atlanta. “We wondered, ‘Was it really working as hard for us as it could?’ ”



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.