BootsnAll Travel Network

Coca-Cola and the Power of Advertising in Kenya and Tanzania

In my business classes in college, professors often brought up the power of Coca-Cola around the world. I’ve now witnessed it firsthand in eastern Africa. Things Coke does to make a name for itself:

Make it cheaper than water: 350 mL of Coke costs around 30 cents. Water is around 50 cents. In Tanzania, Coke actually owns Kilimanjaro water, which most tourists drink.

Give free signs: Signs for retail shops, restaurants, schools and even towns have their names on Coca-Cola signs. I assume they were provided free, in exchange for the extra advertising.

Change out the Coke for sugar: There may not be cocaine in Coca-Cola any more, but there certainly is a lot of sugar. Coke drinkers from the U.S. will notice the difference. Candy is expensive but Coke isn’t.

Have more product: Coca-Cola also makes Krest – ginger ale, lemon and tonic water drinks. However, they do not actively promote the Coca-Cola brand and are served in 300 mL bottles instead of 350 mL.

Another, non-Coke related advertising note. In Kenya, all the light poles have poster-sized advertisements. A whole row of poles will have the same advertisement repeated over and over – usually for mobile phones, service providers or safety announcements warning against rape and robbery.

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