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Retail: AMC Theatres

AMC + Coca-Cola: Flavor Make It.

Turning the AMC + Coca-Cola combo into a cultural icon of teen sharing.

AMC + Coca-Cola are century-old partners who have offered teen-only concession deals for the past few years. However, the marketing behind the deal has been limited to coupons, web pages, + word of mouth. 


AMC and Coca-Cola came to Barkley with a big opportunity to expand the teen initiative from a coupon to a fully branded program. The goal was to cement the AMC, Coca-Cola, and popcorn experience as a ritual at a younger age, leading to a lifelong love for both brands. That's no small task when you survey the competitive landscape of drinks + snacks available today.

Modern Consumer Insight

With the insight that for Gen Z, the theater is the one place where everyone is present and sharing without hesitation, the “Flavor Make It” campaign entices teens to come to the movies for a combo deal made only available to them: A small AMC popcorn and Coca-Cola Freestyle® small drink for just $5. An exclusive Flavor Maker menu unlocks three new custom soda flavors within the Coca-Cola Freestyle® machine. These Gen Z-inspired flavors are supported by a dedicated landing page that also prompts sharing custom flavor combos and snack hacks from concessions on social using #FlavorMaker. The web page also houses Apple and Google Wallet buttons for them to save the Flavor Make It deal for easy access when redeeming at the theatre.


Barkley, AMC, + Coca-Cola kicked off the project with ethnographic research that observed teens throughout the AMC theatre and concessions experience. This deep ethnography work included in-theatre intercepts and observation of friend groups going to the movies. These first-party insights led our strategists to develop appropriate messaging + visuals to attract Gen Zers now and in the future. 

The campaign rolled out with the “Flavor Make It” anthem, a fun, funky, frenetic celebration of the flavor experience that only the perfect combination of AMC popcorn and Coca-Cola Freestyle® flavors can unlock. The piece heroes a group of teenage friends out to the movies at AMC in the midst of buying the AMC and Coke "Flavor Make It" Combo.

With popcorn in hand and phones set aside, the teens descend on the Coca-Cola Freestyle®, and with one push of the Freestyle button they’re transported to a vibrant, animated world of quirky fun, inspired by the flavors they’ve chosen–all scored to an original track inspired by the TikTok earworms currently dominating Gen Z headphones. 

The piece resolves with the teens taken back to reality with elements of animation still interacting with them from streams of color to comically giant eyes. Barkley partnered with the production company, Laundry, and music house, Squeak E-clean, to create the piece. If you listen close enough, you’ll hear a lyrical easter egg “We come to this place for flavor” that nods to AMC’s Nicole Kidman Spot. 

AMC + Coke - Wide
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“We found in our Gen Z research that the movie theatre experience is one of the only times teens feel truly comfortable due to the stress-free, shared IRL experience it provides,” said Pamela Sandler, AMC Vice President of Brand Marketing. “For Gen Z, the theatre and the concessions are not about an escape, it’s total immersion and enjoyment with friends. We wanted the campaign to reflect that shared, immersive experience.”

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