Coke as a brand has been very successful at sharing how its brand is about getting people together and sharing experiences.
For the last 5 years they have performing experimental marketing campaigns, often at the vending machine level, and then sharing those video moments on digital marketing channels to activate their base. It shows that for many brands, after one has been established, your identity can transcend branding elements / identity, and become more metaphorical about the essence or feel of the product itself.
The most recent campaign requires that two coke consumers have to engage together to open the soda itself. The result of documenting this action creates user generated content, when curated appropriately tells the larger story about coke being used to bring people together for a more full life.
Here is another example they came out with in the last few years that asked users to dance to get a coke. This had a bit more “viral” because it attracted crowds, thus became a larger spectacle.
Although Coke has a lot of capital for developing campaigns, really any brand can come up with creative ways for users to use their product and tell that story. Their are always emotional and rational bits of a brands story. It is up to the creative and marketing team to find fresh perspectives to tell a brands story and how to engage their prospects and fans.
Many brands are relying more on earned media to make waves within their community. The two main reasons for this is because consumers are tired of traditional media, but also creative content is also more sharable, and thus has a wider reach.
Either way, if Coke can put a smile on your face while you are looking at their product, they are one step closer to getting you to remembering their product the next time you are faced with a choice of what beverage to buy.