On Feb. 1, the brand will be front and center at New York's Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week as it sponsors Heart Truth's Red Dress Collection. Model and "Project Runway" hostess Heidi Klum will walk the runway sporting a specially designed Marc Jacobs dress, along with other yet-to-be-determined celebs. Past participants who have shimmied down the runway in red dresses, the national symbol for women's-heart-disease awareness, have included Sheryl Crow, Kelly Ripa, Venus Williams, Lindsay Lohan and Fergie.
"Heidi Klum is a great spokesperson for us and a great model for women's heart health," said Caren Pasquale Seckler, group director of low-calorie colas for Coca-Cola North America. "She embodies a modern approach to well-being. Like a lot of women who love Diet Coke and drink Diet Coke, she strikes a positive balance in her life. She's a mother, a wife and a professional. A lot of our consumer base is not unlike her. They might not have the model body, but they're balancing all of those things in their lives too."
Academy Awards effort
Ms. Klum also will wear red at the Academy Awards on Feb. 24. That red dress, designed by Dior's John Galliano, is part of a Diet Coke sweepstakes at mycokerewards.com. The contest gives consumers the opportunity to win the Dior dress, and for each entry, Diet Coke will donate $1, up to $250,000, toward heart-health research and awareness.
If the Academy Awards are canceled, Ms. Pasquale Seckler said Diet Coke will explore other ways Ms. Klum could appear in the dress. "The Oscars are a really important component of this overall program ... but it's just one component," she said.
|Diet Coke packaging will feature the Heart Truth and Red Dress logos.|
Indeed, Diet Coke's yearlong partnership with Heart Truth is far-reaching. In addition to the Red Dress Collection Fashion Show and the mycokerewards.com sweepstakes, Diet Coke will sponsor the Heart Truth Road Show. The traveling exhibit will dispense information on heart disease and offer free health screenings in 10 U.S. cities between February and April. Ms. Klum's Marc Jacobs dress, along with red dresses worn by other celebs, will be on display.
Change in packaging
Consumers also will see packaging changes for Diet Coke, caffeine-free Diet Coke and Diet Coke Plus. Throughout the first half of the year, some 2.5 billion packages will filter through the market featuring the Heart Truth and Red Dress logos, along with information about women's heart health.
All of these efforts will be supported by a print campaign by Wieden & Kennedy that will appear in magazines including People, Glamour, InStyle, Self and Women's Health, among others. Wieden & Kennedy also is developing a national TV campaign that will air at the end of February. A digital campaign created by IMC2 will running on dailycandy.com, glam.com and everydayhealth.com, among others.