Skyscraper + Creativity + Money = Coke Magic

Published
04/03/2015 by

If you’ve got a skyscraper handy, you’re a third of the way to a stunning, one-of-a-kind billboard. Just add a hefty dose of creativity and lots of money. The folks at Coca-Cola did just that and turned a run of the mill, mid-centurycentury piece of architecture into a multi-media, memorable animated billboard.

 Celebrating 125 Years

 It isn’t every day a company turns 125. The Coca-Cola Company celebrated by illuminating their headquarters in Atlanta, GA three days a week during the month of May in 2011. 

It was the largest display involving the illumination of a single building ever attempted. The tower is 26 stories high—that’s 402 feet straight up. Each of the four sides of the building got its own display, with projections covering an area 339 feet high and 157 feet wide.

The total was more than 210,000 square feet of illumination. That’s a celebration.

 What Viewers Saw

 The centerpiece was an iconic Coke bottle, projected 26 stories high in spectacular 3-D. The other sides of the building displayed ads that had been used over the last century and a quarter.

 Fans from Coke’s Facebook page were invited to post images. The creative team selected a number of them and projected them onto the building. 

This shows creative ways to blend new media with old media while increasing your reach and impact.

 The Technology

 To get the building ready for illumination, it was canvassed in scrim. Lighting all four sides of the building involved 45 projectors, each with the power of 20,000 lumens. The overall total was almost a million lumens projected simultaneously on the skyscraper.

 More Celebrating

 The billboard was just part of the big party celebrating 125 years. The company hosted a concert in Atlanta for 15,000 employees and their families, featuring music, art and other entertainment. It was streamed live around the world.

 The company’s birthday party lasted six months. It included commissioning seven paintings by noted artist Steven Penley, showing highlights from the company’s history.

 Other displays were mounted around the world, including Singapore, China, Turkey and Hong Kong. Special collectible anniversary Coke bottles came out, as well as a tour of the company’s archives on its online Coca-Cola Virtual Museum.

 There is no data available on how much all of this cost. But four-sided, 26-story billboards don’t come cheap.