Marketing Roundup: Coca-Cola Aiming For Gen-Z With Magical Drinking

by 3rd + Lamar

Coca-Cola launched Dreamworld, a limited-edition soda that is supposed to taste like dreams, in a bid to attract Gen-Z. This is the fourth special edition flavor they’ve launched this year through Coca-Cola Creations.

Coca-Cola Dreamworld Video

Past specialty flavors this year have included space-flavored Starlight, pixel-flavored Byte, and Marshmello, which was developed with producer Marshmello.

We took a closer look at the ingredients list to see where the “dream” flavor comes from. The only difference is that phosphoric acid is listed above natural flavors in traditional Coke but below natural flavors in Dreamworld, so it turns out that dreams are made of a proportional increase in natural flavors. Go figure.

Regardless, we’re interested to see whether the campaign is successful with Gen-Z. Revenue-wise, Coca-Cola has had a great year so far and continues to top expectations, so perhaps there is something to those naturally flavored dreams.

While we’re on the topic, check out this “Brown Sprite” sketch video by Sam Eidson, a local friend of ours.

Brown Sprite

players can now profit off highlights

Pac-12 football players can now get actual money—rather than just awareness—for their highlight videos posted on Twitter, according to ESPN.

The conference announced the change in collaboration with Twitter, NIL marketplace Opendorse, and startup Tempus Ex Machina. We think it’s a clever partnership and a unique opportunity.

The Netflix “look”

VICE published an article investigating why all Netflix shows have a similar look that makes them identifiable.

Image from The Sandman

Per author Gita Jackson: “The image in general is dark, and the colors are extremely saturated; Especially in scenes at night, there tends to be a lot of colored lighting, making everything look like it’s washed in neon even if the characters are inside; Actors look like the makeup is caked on their faces, and details in their costumes like puckering seams are unusually visible.”

Maybe Netflix knows something we don’t. If anyone knows consumer content preferences, it should be Netflix.

“Most annoying to me, everything is also shot in an extremely conventional way, using the most conventional set ups to indicate mystery or intrigue as possible—to indicate that something weird is going on the framing always has a dutch angle, for example—or more often just having everyone shot in a medium close up.”

-Gita Jackson

D2C Sales down

A consumer VC advisor posted this Twitter thread showing the financial numbers this quarter from popular direct-to-consumer companies, and they don’t look good.

Allbirds, Purple, Warby Parker, Bark, The Honest Company, and others are operating at an increased loss from last year. The one outlier was hair care company Olaplex.

These results seem to be a sign of the times with inflation, high D2C saturation, more retail sales, and fewer e-commerce sales since the peak of the pandemic. A good indicator of the D2C market at large is Shopify, which has seen a 78% decline in its stock price YTD.

Solo climbing scare

Last up, we wanted to share the wildest video we saw on Instagram this week.

Hold on tight, August is almost over, and we’re two-thirds through Q3.

That’s all for this week. Check back next week for more news. And subscribe to our newsletter below for additional updates.