Thursday, November 6, 2008

Why Coke Sucks and Pepsi Rocks

I've decided it's time to write a fierce and inflammatory post. So all you Coke fans out there? You're WRONG! 

I say this not as someone who prefers either to the other as a beverage. I don't habitually drink either Coke or Pepsi, and if I do drink soda, whatever's around is fine with me.

No, I'm speaking as one who has had occasion to critically examine their rewards programs.

You see, both Coke and Pepsi are currently running programs where if you enter alphanumeric codes (found inside specially marked bottle caps) on a website, you can get Points and redeem them for Stuff. 

Being extremely fond of Free Stuff, I recently began to collect both varieties of bottle cap, with the intention of getting some mp3s for my newish iPod. The iPod must be fed, after all.

Here's why Pepsi rocks: it's simple, and you see progress fast. 

Each code is worth one point. Five points will buy one song. Easy! 

You enter the points through a nice straightforward interface at Pepsi Stuff: sign in, hit 'enter code,' type code (10 characters) into field, hit the arrow or the Return key, see updated point total.

The site is directly linked to Amazon, from which you get your mp3s, so you can click another button and go straight there to download a song. Amazon music downloads work on any old system, so it goes straight to my iTunes and thence my iPod.


And here's why Coke sucks: it's not simple, and you only see progress slooooowly.

Each code is worth three points. Forty-three points will buy one song, which is a weird number that is not a direct multiple of any number of caps, but essentially, it takes 15 codes to get one song. 

Why are Coke's songs three times as expensive as Pepsi's? Who knows. (Other than that Coke sucks.)

You enter codes through an obnoxious interface at My Coke Rewards: first you wait for the site to load, which involves an animation of a Coke bottle filling up. Cute, but I kind of just want to get to business.

Then you have to click a link to 'sign in,' and wait for the site to reload with fields to sign in.

You enter your login info, and then have to wait for the site to reload with your account information. 

Then you have to click 'enter codes,' and wait for the site to reload with a field to enter the code. 

Then you enter the code (15 characters) into the field, hit Return, and wait while a pop-up appears that makes you select the specific variety of Coke product your bottle cap came from.

As someone who gets most of my bottle caps by scrounging (you can find a lot of those things lying on the ground!), I neither know nor care what specific variety of Coke product the bottle cap came from. Further, I don't know why Coke cares, and even if they do care, I'm annoyed that they make me do the work. 

If they really want to know what the people who use this website drink, they should differentiate the codes, which they can obviously do since if you enter a code from a blue cap, you get to pick from the Sprite line, while if you enter a code from a red cap, you get to pick from the Coke line.

Anyway, you pick a Coke product at random (if you're me), and only then does your point total update. 

And then, to make the suckage even more inarguable, Coke's mp3s come through Rhapsody, an OK product, but one that only works on Windows-based systems, meaning I have to use my precious lunch time to download songs onto my work computer before I can get them onto my iPod.

Also, you have to redeem your points for another code and enter that on the Rhapsody site, adding yet another step to this process.


To sum up, Pepsi's mp3-gettin' system is streamlined and awesome and I love it and it's given me several hassle-free songs. 

Drink Pepsi! And send me your bottle caps!

Coke's system is slow and byzantine and annoying and it takes forever to earn enough points for a song, and I only keep using it because I keep finding Coke caps and might as well save them. (I can't resist Free Stuff, even if it is irritating.) 

If you insist on drinking Coke, still send me your bottle caps!

My husband, a near-lifelong Diet Coke drinker, has actually switched to Diet Pepsi to get caps for me. That's true love.

In closing, Pepsi is the nectar of the gods and Coke is monkey spittle. Thank you.

1 comment:

Dustin Sullivan said...

I wholeheartedly concur!