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Industry Insight

Social Networking Vending Machine

Really?

By Richard Romano
Published: May 18, 2011

Really?

Witness PepsiCo's Social Vending System, a network-ready, touch-screen interactive vending machine designed to foster greater connection with PepsiCo brands.

...

The machine allows beverage buyers to purchase drinks as gifts and to offer them to friends, or anyone else, in the form of redeemable codes delivered via text messages. The buyer simply enters the recipient's name, mobile number, a personal message, and an optional video message, and then sends the gift code into the ether. The recipient can then obtain the paid-for beverage at his or her convenience.

...

Those bestowing beverages have the option to engage in what PepsiCo is calling "Random Acts of Refreshment," which involves buying drinks for unknown parties that meet certain criteria. PepsiCo suggests, "a consumer could send a symbol of encouragement [to] someone in a city that has experienced challenging weather, or a congratulatory beverage to a student at a university that just won a championship."
And think, this could completely revolutionize stalking.

Please offer your feedback to Richard. He can be reached at richard@whattheythink.com.

 

Discussion

By Diane on May 19, 2011

You can send videos and texts withthe gift too. This is a blatent attempt to replace revenue lost since most school systems are pulling machines out. This is marketing to kids at its worst. The last thing we need is the ability to send such a gift. Could this lead to "vending machine bullying," sending HFC products to fat kids? I'm disgusted!

 

By Brian Regan on May 19, 2011

Jeez, and I am impatient enough when I have to wait for the people in front of me to buy their drink and move on. I wonder how much longer each user on average is at the machine and if it impacts in a negative way, people that are in a hurry and need a quick drink option.

 

By Chuck Gehman on May 19, 2011

I think it's a great idea. In fact, I'm working on a Social Gas Pump right now. It will let you enter the recipient’s name, mobile number, a personal message, and an optional video message, and automatically includes the amount you paid.

This is all neatly bundled up and sent off to the recipient asking them to send you a "reverse gift card" to pay for it. PayPal and Major Credit Cards accepted, of course.

 

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