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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wendy DOES Coke…Dave DID Coke...Is Wendy TOO deep into Coke to pull out?

by Dan Getz,
Blogger, Dance4One
June 8, 2011

Just a couple weeks ago I was in a Double Dave’s Pizza Works and wrote the following with regard to the Coca-Cola Free-Style machine that was then leased by Double Daves…

“Secondly I want to thank Coca-Cola and the manager on duty both last Sunday and today for fixing the Coca-Cola machine and re-stocking my favorite beverage, Dr. Pepper.  Coca-Cola, I commend you for your ingenuity and willingness to create a machine that not only serves YOUR products, but the products of your competitors (not quite sure WHY you selected Dr. Pepper over Mr. Pibb, but I, for one, am glad you did).  Coca-Cola, although I was amazed at the ingenuity of the Coca-Cola Free-Style machine, and quite honestly quite pleased with this NEW machine, “word on the street” is that not only is everyone NOT thrilled with this machine due to FREQUENT break-downs and maintenance, lack of “user-friendliness” (i.e. the machine seems to have been SO over-simplified, the menu selection has become quite complex and confusing to SOME of the end-users), and frequently unavailable products (although the array of what COULD be available is pleasantly overwhelming)…BUT the machine at THIS location COULD be replaced VERY soon with a simpler, easier and virtually maintenance-free machine with a proven track record.”

A couple week’s later when eating lunch at Double Daves again, the Coca-Cola Free-Style Machine had been removed and had the letter shown in the photo above posted to the original machine that now sat in the place of the Coca-Cola Free-Style Machine.

Yesterday, when grabbing a quick bite at Wendy’s, I quickly noticed they, too had a Coca-Cola Free-Style Machine, proudly advertised as “One-Two-Three…Simple” (paraphrased, of course, but remarkably close to the original wording).  As I was ordering my Double Cheeseburger Value Menu Meal/Combo, I quipped to the friendly order-taker, “How’s the Free-Style Machine work’in out for ya’ll?” In a less than convincing tone, I got the typical “G----R----E---a..t”.  As I looked intently into her eyes as if to say, “Now the truth, please”, her eyes, a bit nervously looked first from side to side and then a bit downward, and then she added, “W…e….l…l…it sometimes doesn’t work too well…and w….e….l….l…we do get a number of complaints from customers”….

As “luck” would have it, I turned around, and quite frankly my jaw dropped open as I realized the man behind me was a man hired specifically by Wendy’s to ensure the Coca-Cola Free-Style machines in all of this particular region were working properly.  He seemed friendly enough, but a bit nervous sounding as he stammered, “Yep...I’ve heard a number of complaints myself, but I don’t think there’s anyway Wendy’s would pull out nowWendy’s is now the largest fast-food restaurant to carry the Coca-Cola Free-Style Machine.”  He went on to thank me for my comments and assured me they would be passed on to “upper management”, although I noticed soon after this “assurance” that he had “split”…

Coke, you have a great idea, but it is apparent that you have not adequately field-tested this particular machine.  During my brief visits to Double Daves and Wendy’s, and personal use of the Coca-Cola Free-Style Machine, I could tell you plainly what’s wrong, and what could EASILY be fixed with this particular machine…but would you listen?  If you can’t “hear” your customers Dave and Wendy, then I doubt very seriously whether you can hear an end customer such as me…But if you happened to change your mind, I’d be glad to offer you a report for FREE, that I typically charge my clients $1,000 to $10,000+ for, through one of my companies called More Green Consulting.

Dan Getz is owner/operator of Dance4One, an arts and entertainment company and the parent company of More Green Consulting and Ambit Energy Marketing/Consulting.  For more information you may visit or read his DAILY BLOG covering Economics, Politics, Religion and Every Day Life at

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