Evolution of Christmas Ads from Coca-Cola [Infographic]
Coca-Cola Christmas Ads
Did you know that the paintings used in the mid 1900-s helped create the modern image of Santa Claus?
This portly white man in a red suit that brings joy to families and friends was firstly portrayed by Haddon Sundblom, a Sweden artist, in 1931. It’s interesting to know that we still use the Sundblom’s illustrations of Santa at Christmas time.
The infographic below takes a look at the most impressive Coca-Cola Christmas ads that signify about the beginning of the Christmas season.
So, let’s take a more detailed look at this enduring image of a merry, jolly, old man in the Sundblom’s paintings from 1931 that was the basis for the next Coca-Cola Christmas adverts.
Click to open / Right-click for save options
The Evolution of Christmas Ads from Coca-Cola
1930: artist Fred Mizen painted a department store Santa in a crowd drinking a bottle of Coke.
1931: Coca Cola did invent the red-and-white jolly Santa during the 1930s, the illustration was made by Haddon Sundblom.
1935: Sundblom's Santa Claus appeared in Coca Cola ads to remind people that they could drink Coke all year round (not just on summery afternoons!)
1936: the image appeared during the Great Depression in the US, where everyone needed a reminder of happier times. Sundblom painted the image of Santa using a live model - his friend Lou Prentiss, a retired salesman.
1937: Santa's gloves are tucked into his belt while he stops to take a Coke and a turkey leg out of the fidge. Ads that showed people leaving Cokes out for Santa on Christmas Eve inspired lots of families to do the same.
1938: the 'Pause that Refreshes' was one of the longest-lasting slogans in Coke history, first introduced in 1929.
1941: Santa reclines next to a cooler, drinking Coca-Cola Contour Bottle with a sack full of toys.
1949: In the 40s Coca-Cola introduced "Sprite Boy", a character who appeared with Santa Claus in the Coca-Cola advertising throughout the 1940s and 1950s. Sprite Boy, who was also created by Sundblom, got his name due to the fact that he was a sprit, or an elf.
1953: the original oil paintings Sundblom created were adopted for Coca-Cola advertising in magazines and on store displays, billboards, posters, calendars, and plush dolls. Many of those items today are pouplar collectibles.
1954: for many of us, the sight of Coca-Cola's iconic Christmas advert signifies the start of the Christmas season.
1955: throughout the years, the slogans used in advertising for Coca-Cola have reflected not only the brand, but the times. Slogans provide a simple, directy way to communicate about Coca-Cola.
1956: Although it may not seem like it now, this Santa hasn't always been around. Before Santa, pretty young women were used to endorse Coca-Cola.
1957: People loved the Coca-cola Santa images and paid such close attention to them that when anything changed, they sent letters to the Coca-Cola Company. One year, Santa's large belt was backwards. Another year, Santa Claus appeared without a wedding ring, causing fans to write asking what happened to Mrs. Claus.
1959: From 1931 to 1964, Coca-Cola advertising showed Santa delivering toys and playing with them, pausing to read a letter, and enjoy a Coke, visiting with the children who stayed up to greet him, and riding the raiding the refrigerators of homes.
1961: Santa tries to hush the family dog who is alerting the owners to a big, red intruder.
1962-1963: Sundblom's versions of Santa Claus are some of the most prized pieces in the art collection in the company's archives department and have been on exhibit around the world.
1964: The dog in Sundblom's 1964 Santa Claus painting was actually a stray poodle belonging to the neighborhood florist. But Sundblom wanted the dog to stand out in the holiday scene, so he painted the nanimal fur black.
1993: The Coca-Cola Company made a dramatic shift in its advertising by introducing the "Always Coca-Cola" campaign. There have been many polar bear ads since the 1993 debut.
1995: The Coca-Cola Christmas trucks are created by agency WJ Doner fo a new seasonal advertising campaign. Known as 'Christmas Caravans', the illuminated lorries are made more enchanting with special effects by the world-famous Industrial Light and Magic, the company behind the Star Wars films.
2001: The artwork from Sundblom's 1963 painting was the basis for an animated TV commercial starring the Coca-Cola Santa. This enduring image of a merry, kind, old man with rosy cheeks and twinkling eyes is exatly how the world loves to see Santa.
Holidays are Coming!
If you enjoyed this confession story, make sure you subscribe to the Confessions RSS feed!
You can also follow Confessions on Twitter.
You can also subscribe to the Weekly Confessions Digest.