Coca-Cola embraces augmented reality with interactive experience

As augmented reality becomes more of a transformational technology for the marketing industry, more brands are adopting it in various ways. Coca-Cola decided to invite viewers into its immersive AR plunge through its app in collaboration with Ogilvy Mexico and VFX house Timber.

Santa Monica-based Timber worked with Ogilvy to create 3D elements needed for the interactive AR experience where users are able to point their phone’s camera at a can of Coke and witness one of 12 stories come to life. The stories each revolve around a minor conflict, where animated characters engage in a lighthearted exchange leading to an outcome that becomes more favorable by sharing a Coke.

One shows a couple of kids getting their beach ball deflated by a beach umbrella, while another shows a young couple at a movie getting scared and dropping their popcorn.

Another playful video shows two rival soccer fans squaring off against each other by beating the drum of their own team. Just when things get heated a ball comes flying out of the "real" can and the two become friends as they engage in a game. All activities center around the can of Coke as a way to make everything better.

From the environments to the characters and overall animation, Timber took the lead in creating a captivating world that elevated the consumer experience beyond the beverage, with opportunities to interact with products while entertaining users both young and old.

“This project was a perfect implementation for AR,” said Jonah Hall and Kevin Lau, creative directors and partners at Timber. “People working together in harmony was always the core foundation of the idea. Coke has always been great at associating their brand with happiness and harmony. The concept grew out of this. The nature of AR allowed the viewer to bring these stories into their environment using the practical can of Coke as a prop and become the backdrop for each of these scenarios to play out.”

A case study video shows the meticulous detail that went into making the AR experience videos, from concepting to sketching, building characters and props and putting those through 3D development before finally activating the AR videos.

“The idea that our work is being activated by Coca-Cola customers in such a fun and experiential way is a big part of what drew us to the project. This was the perfect opportunity to explore a new medium and to test our storytelling skills in emerging markets,” said Hall and Lau.

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