Coca Cola recently took the “Happiness Factory” concept out of the television and into the common room of a New York City university. A specially rigged Coca Cola vending machine was set up overnight in Marilac Hall at St John’s University in Queens, with five hidden cameras ready to catch the action. Next day students were surprised to find that the machine was prepared to break the users pays rule, handing out (literally in some cases) pizza, flowers, extra Coke, balloon animals and a a six-foot sub. The edited video has just gone over 900,000 views since its launch on January 12, 2010.
Students laugh and jump, pass the Cokes and gifts around, and even thank Coke as they hug the vending machine. But the footage is “all real students and real reactions,” according to Christy Amador, digital marketing manager, Coca-Cola global interactive marketing. The video ends with the question, “Where will happiness strike next?” and a message encouraging viewers to “Share the happiness, share the video.”
The content is highly engaging and is a typical example of a video that can spark a so-called water cooler conversation. It is also a good fit with the brand’s global ‘Open Happiness’ advertising campaign. Coca-Cola is a brand that has been quite successful in re-launching some of its famous high profile television ads online. But in addition, it has also created a number of great online videos that blend in nicely with its offline campaigns. The video spread to more than 660 blogs and 4,700 wrote a tweet about it.
The Happiness Machine stunt was developed at Definition 6, Atlanta, by executive creative director John Harne, director Paul Iannacchino Jr., producer Todd Morris, director of photography Sean Donnelly, executive producer Blakely Blalock, set decorator Ni Ni Than, prop builder Mike Myers, editor Pat Carpenter, editorial assistant Pieter van den Berg, sound designers Mike Barrett and Juan Sosa, post producer Lisa Miller.
The Happiness Machine campaign was launched on Coca Cola’s Twitter channel and Facebook Fanpage.