Created by Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann-Erickson Worldwide, Paris, the 30-second commercial stars a a young, greasy-haired, would-be artist -- apparently the sort of consumer Coca-Cola is now pursuing -- who takes a seat at the bar of a typical French cafe, orders a Coke and tells the barman he's "getting nowhere" on his latest project.
The artist doodles on the bar using water dripping off his bottle cap rather than paint, seemingly inspired by the cold Coke he's drinking. An elderly man is similarly inspired, carrying out an impromptu drum solo on the bar to signal his exit, winning a surprised reaction from the young artist and a knowing smile from the barman.
The optimistic message behind the "Good Vibrations" spot follows that of its "Smile Through Life" saga directed by French filmmaker Eric Zonca, while the spontaneous tone of dialogue gives viewers the impression that the scene could take place in their own local cafe, and could involve people they know.
Coca-Cola France has invested heavily on the move toward the "think local, act local" advertising strategy which moves away from the idealized images of happy American youth that have proliferated in global campaigns for decades. The soft drink giant's promotional budget this year is an estimated $40 million. -- Lawrence J. Speer
Copyright August 2001, Crain Communications Inc.