The 10 Most Iconic Coke Ads Mad Men Didn’t Use

A whole lot of polar bears, beach babes and NFL players missed out on starring roles in AMC’s period drama.
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A whole lot of polar bears, beach babes and NFL players missed out on starring roles in AMC’s period drama.
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Matt Weiner has a knack for compelling finales (and, we guess, for prestige television generally)—after Mad Men ended Sunday night, Twitter was ablaze with reaction to the series’ ending. Had Peggy actually made the commercial? Did Don’s smile bespeak a newly found spiritual enlightenment, or just great idea for an ad? Regardless of your take, Coca-Cola’s iconic 1971 commercial, “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing,” was the star of the show’s final minutes, a testament to the power of advertising and the weakness of early seventies, pseudo-hippie fashion. Real-life agency McCann Erickson asked, Do you love your fellow man? If so, buy him a Coke.

While that commercial is Coke’s most famous, the soda-pop juggernaut has always invested heavily in its advertising campaigns, and has produced a slew of memorable commercials spanning half of a century. Here are our favorites, and damn it if we aren’t craving something carbonated and caramel-colored.

1.  "Have a Coke," 1955

Agency – unknown

2. “Things Go Better With Coke,” 1963

Agency: McCann Erickson

3. “Have a Coke and a Smile,” 1979

Agency: McCann Erickson



4.  “Catch the Wave,” 1986

Agency: McCann Erickson

5. "Always Coca-Cola," 1993

Agency: Creative Artists Agency

6.  “The Coke Side of Life,” 2006

Agency: Wieden and Kennedy

7. “The Coke Side of Life,” 2007

Agency: Wieden and Kennedy

8. “The Coke Side of Life,” 2008

Agency: Wieden and Kennedy

9.  "Open Happiness,” 2009

Agency: Definition 6

10.  Coca-Cola Music Machine, 2011

Agency: Unknown

Photos by Underwood Archives/Getty Images