Why Coke Zero Was Originally Marketed As 'For Men'

Earlier this month, Coke started experimenting with one of its most popular drinks: Coke Zero. According to CNN, the company modified Coke Zero to ensure that it tastes a lot more like classic Coke. Some of its customers weren't happy and complained on social media. The company felt reasonably sure about the product when it launched the drink in the U.S. Rafael Prandini, category lead for Coca-Cola in North America, said, "We pre-tested both the new recipe and the new look, with current Coca-Cola Zero Sugar consumers and non-consumers. And they really love it." 

Some customers actually do like this beverage. Someone wrote on Twitter, "And this new Coke Zero passes the taste test." Another fan said, "Wasn't ready for a new Coke Zero can design. Opened the pack and got startled. But, hey, it's now somehow more delicious."

It must be said: Coke Zero has an interesting story. You see, it used to be a beverage that was targeted towards men. According to The Cut, the brand didn't try to hide this at all and a majority of its commercials had add-ons such as video games and sports. Let's take a look back.

This particular soda used to cater to men a lot more

According to The Cut's piece, Coke Zero's marketing slogan, at some point, was pretty direct: "Guys being guys." Later, things got even more intense with special Coke Zero cans for men that had labels like "Wingman," "Gamer," "Bros," and "Grillmaster." At the time of the launch, a representative from the company said (via USA Today), "This product tastes like Coke ... there's a broad group of young adult males who are looking for full flavor ... and, oh, by the way, it has zero calories."

The reason was simple: The company wanted to ensure that men didn't stay away from the drink simply because it was a low-calorie option and had words like "diet" associated with it.

Meanwhile, some Redditors also pointed out that Diet Coke is mostly targeted towards women. The strategy does seem to work. A Redditor said that they've often seen their mother-in-law stick to Diet Coke, while her boyfriend prefers Coke Zero. However, another commentator made it pretty clear that they don't care about marketing. They wrote, "I'm a man and I drink Diet Coke. In fact, I have a bottle right here in my handbag."