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By Joel M. Albrizio, President

"Coke Is A Part Of Center Store Sales"

So if center store sales are off everywhere in supermarket retail how can the retailer begin to once again rebuild sales?

The answer is in the brand. The retailer and the product the retailer is aligned with together develop an emotion when thought of and that becomes the retailers brand. To build a great brand it always helps to align yourself with great brands, especially in a difficult center store sales environment.

The corporate brand is one of a companies most precious assets. The greatest lever in building corporate strength and value is through its brand.

Coke, whether it be Diet Coke or just Coke as most of us think of it has the single strongest brand recognition and corporate strength because of its brand not only in the United States but internationally.

A brand so strong it is now sold successfully in over 200 countries.

So what does Wall Street think of Coca-Cola?

A single share of Coca-Cola stock purchased in 1919 for $40 is worth over 10 million dollars today. Can you imagine any company growing from $40 to over 10 million dollars?

When we think of Coke it brings a smile to our faces. Everyone loves Coke. Its thirst quenching, tasteful but actually not that good for us....What?

Thats right the worlds most valuable brand represents a product that when served as either Coke or Diet Coke essentially has no positive nutritional value.

In fact because of the sodium content most professionals suggest avoiding Diet Coke when dieting.

So when you are a great company and realize possible shortcomings with your brand what do you do next? Coke rectified this theoretical shortcoming through healthy drink choice acquisitions.

In a sharp turnaround becoming more health focused....

Coca-Cola now owns Minute Maid, Powerade, and Dasani just to name a few.

Coca-Cola is a company that defines what America stands truly an "All American Success Story" all around the world.

Coca-Cola is a precious part of the very fabric of what America can be at its very best....So Just how strong is this brand Coca-Cola?

Coca-Cola, ahead of all other companies is the worlds number one brand.

Coca-Cola denies top companies with great brands like Apple, Walt Disney, Google, Nike and every other brand in the world the number one brand status.

It is not that these other companies are not great, they certainly are. What sets Coca-Cola apart from all others is the most simplistic well defined product line delivering over decades with unparalleled consistency.

"How Is Coca-Cola Such A Great Company?  Coke Does It All!

To illustrate in a single instance how strong the Coca-Cola brand is and its golden touch just think of Columbia Pictures.

Most are unaware Coca-Cola purchased a struggling Columbia Pictures in 1981 and turned the movie studio into an international powerhouse in the movie industry.

With films like Ghostbusters, Stripes and The Karate Kid, Columbia Pictures not only became successful but a model company with a solid brand itself.

The secret of Coke is simple...."These Guys And Gals Run A Really Great Company"

In short, rather than looking to Coca-Cola for what might be right or wrong as supermarket retailers we need to study Coca-Cola. Coke is a branding powerhouse that transcends price.

Sell almost any soda for less and it doesn't matter....Your customer wants Coke.

Try selling food anywhere in the world without a cola on the menu or in the aisles of a supermarket. Coke is that Cola.

Once any retailer fully understands building brand and its diverse value, that company has become not only more readily profitable but well funded intellectually.

Branding and its retail sales strength now separates the supermarket retailers that drive sales through markdowns from the companies that drive sales through trust.....its brand.  Markdowns by themselves without defined deliverables are contrary to the branding efforts.

"Pile It High & Sell It Cheap Is Not A Brand, Its A Temporary Pump In Sales"  Brands Build Sustainable Sales.

Lets all agree we have lots to learn while we become students of the evolving retail food industry. The technique of branding and how Coca-Cola has accomplished its brand is an MBA in business all within itself.

In closing, many have asked why I choose to write about what we see in the supermarket industry today and my ideas. It is our belief at Adlife that to sell through cold calling only as a company is disingenuous. Just lowering your advertising costs will never resolve any supermarket retailers larger issues long term. At Adlife we believe our ideas and its resulting branding will give new life and direction to your company. So for that reason we chose to open the discussion. 

Joel M. Albrizio President Adlife Marketing & Communications

Thank-you for you ideas & support!