Internship Diaries of 2020: Marketing at Coca-Cola

Internship Diaries of 2020 is a series about the various categories of roles offered by companies for summer internships. We bring to you the experiences of interns from Consulting, Finance, Marketing, General Management, Product Management, Operations and E-commerce roles to understand a bit more about their work life. The articles are meant to give the reader a glimpse into the life of an intern and help the reader understand their fit in that particular role.

Contributed by: Naveen K

Picture Credits: Rishi Rathi                            

Edited by: Anandita Rohi

 

I had the privilege of doing my summer internship with Coca-Cola and was looking forward to living the corporate experience. However, it was thwarted because of COVID-19, an unprecedented pandemic. Students were losing job and internship offers. Coca-Cola however, delivered what it had promised and even started the internship on time. Coca-Cola was looking to expand into e-commerce territory, considering how the grocery and beverage category is yet to leverage it. My project was crucial because Coca-Cola was looking for a sustainable solution catering to more comprehensive geography. In times of COVID-19, it became more critical, which pushed the project from a need to a necessity.

This internship gave me a wholesome experience as I was able to go through the entire phase of identifying the problem until piloting the solution. My mentor and everyone at Coca-Cola was extremely supportive and tried their best to ensure working from home does not limit my project scope. My first task was to identify the right RTM (Route to Market) channel for our products from demand and feasibility perspective. Over multiple calls and analyses, the project focus was narrowed down to Amazon and Flipkart. The requirement on these platforms for beverages was not met primarily because it lacked the right product assortment. Manufactures (bottlers) lacked the infrastructure to bring in broader varieties through bundling and packaging solve. Hence, identifying an e-commerce distributor specialized in this domain became crucial.

To understand the product demand and preferred price point, I developed a portfolio gap analyzing tool which recommends the right product, price point, and pack-set by benchmarking with the competing brands. I collaborated with Adglobal360 (Internet Marketing Company) to help me create a real-time database for the tool by web-scraping the product details across multiple platforms and brands. To understand the financial feasibility, I did a value chain analysis and developed a handy calculator, to follow which product, what pack-set and price point becomes feasible. Based on the value chain analysis, we were able to negotiate a margin with e-commerce distributors. We got them onboarded with our manufacturers (bottlers), Amazon, and Flipkart. Based on the entire analysis, I was able to design a BPPC (Brand Package Price Channel) architecture for the entire product portfolio for both B2B and B2C channels. I was successful in piloting my recommendation on Amazon. Further, I devised a comprehensive roadmap for Coca-Cola in e-commerce to expand over time.

My internship was a roller coaster journey with things pouring from all ends, confusing at first, but slowly I was able to move forward, learn, and grow. My mentor and everyone at Coca-Cola helped me, pushed me, and directed me to an unfathomable journey and out of my comfort zone. Still, it was totally worth it, as rightly said, “The ship is always safe at the shore, but that’s not what it’s built for.”

Naveen, Rishi and Anandita are students of the PGP 2019-21 batch at IIM Bangalore.

 

Media Cell IIMB is the student run outreach and communication committee of IIM Bangalore dedicated to form the bridge within the student community and the outside world.

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