Do you know the expression: «Success is not a destination, but a journey»? It inspired in 1987 then-Chairman and CEO Roberto Goizueta of The Coca-Cola Company to launch in print quarterly internal magazine – Journey. «The magazine’s purpose is to chronicle the journey on which we, and the great Company for which we work, have embarked,» – he wrote

With the advent of the Internet era, it’s time to reboot the magazine into a Digital Platform. However, in 2012 Coke’s Digital Communications and Social Media team decided to «bring back the name as a modern version of the original concept». Today it is one of the most extensive Media Platforms, which covers almost the entire globe. It includes its own global site, blog – Coca-Cola Unboltted – and a local editions around the world. According to Journey Co-Managing Editor Jay Moye, it published 1,200 articles and attracted 13.1 million visitors in 2013. Let’s see what Journey like to date.


Talented Company – Talented Publication

You probably noticed that The Coca-Cola Company itself has a remarkable talent in creating ads. It can tell story, which   all people on planet will understand. And it will praise the diversity and inclusion, human emotions and feelings, family values and sincere emotion. Most probably remember the «America the Beautiful» Super Bowl commercial from 2014. There people of different ethnicities and ages enjoyed Coca-Cola’s products. Or a nice ad of «Brotherly Love» from #TasteTheFeeling initiative. And this year, it launched a campaign #ThatsGold for the Olympic Games in Rio. But great contribution to the development of the brand is making exactly its digital branded media-campaign – Journey.

Coca-Cola. Journey Team

If you still difficult to imagine the scope of digital brand, then here’s a little more information. In March of 2014, the company organized its first ever JourneyOn publishing summit. Since then, the Coca-Cola arranges annual meetings of senior editors from Journey publications from around the world. «[JourneyOn] was kind of a hybrid training conference/networking event where we really provided a very nuts-and-bolts exercise of what makes a good story, how we publish, some of our processes, some of the legal ramifications that we have to navigate, etc» – explained Moye.


What Makes Its Content Сatching?

Today, Journey operates nearly in 30 countries. And each edition unique. In other words, the content for the platform, which is produced in Russia, will be some different from the content that is produced in the United States, United Kingdom and Pakistan. Of course, there are certain topics that are translated from the American site, but more often countries highlights topics, events, and news important to their region.

For example, UK’s department works exactly in this way. It collaborates with Coca-Cola’s ParkLives – program encouraged people to participate in free sporty activities at nearby parks – and produce compelling stories about about individuals who accomplished personal feats during this program. Or consider, in Russia, some news from Rio were accentuated on the Russian reader, as talked about native show-business stars in the Olympic Torch Relay.

Coca-Cola. Journey Geography


How To Measure Popularity

Journey stories are powerful because of the local context that speaks to so many different audiences. But how does a company measure success of Journey? In February 2014, Mark Higginson from Sparksheet published «Should Coca-Cola Quit Its Content Marketing Journey?». He relied on the fact that «the level of interaction was negligible». «The average number of shares from a post to Facebook was 238, to LinkedIn – 103 and to Twitter – 42. Each post averaged 8 comments and 2/3 of posts received no comments at all». And indeed, if you look at the number of sharings, you will not be dumbfounded large numbers.

Coca-Cola. Journey

However, Ashley Brown, Journey’s team leader, explained that «measure of ‘engagement’ is time spent on the page consuming the content». He also wrote: «Unbottled’s bounce rate is just over 10%, which is absolutely extraordinary for a blog». In the interview to Contently, Moye admitted that Coca-Cola assign an Expressions of Interest score to each piece of content. «This proprietary metric captures conversations and engagement by assigning a quantitative value based on referrals from social networks, shares, SEO traffic, and total visitors for an individual story».


Have Much To Learn

What we can learn from the Journey’s experience? For brands it is a wonderful example of expanding influence horizons and to tap into the minds of the brand’s target markets. Everything published on Journey is data-driven. Even articles about food, cultural pieces, music and so on. They cleverly wedged its main product in global content and promoting it to the masses. Thus, there is an impressive result with a great feedback from customers.

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