Machine offers SA iced tea for tweets

2012-06-22 14:52

Cape Town - A Twitter-activated vending machine is dispensing free ice tea in exchange for a Tweet in South Africa, in what developers say is the world's first sampling drive via the micro-blogging site.

The robot-like machine was set up in a Cape Town mall, where it reacts to a specific hash tag to kick into action and pop out cans of the local BOS Ice Tea brand while displaying the tweeter's username.

"It's the only one of its kind and it's the first one that we know of that is Twitter-activated," said Donald Swanepoel, creative director at marketing agency Cow Africa.

The campaign aimed to get people to taste the tea, which is made with rooibos tea and blended with fruit flavours, while spreading awareness of the brand.

"The interest has really been amazing," Swanepoel said.

"Whenever someone tweets it, all their followers read about BOS and obviously the novelty of it being a tweet-activated vending machine meant that a whole lot of media has picked up on the story, and that's also gone onto the social media channels," he added.

The machine will leave the Cape Town mall on Friday and there are plans for a national tour.

South Africans are the most enthusiastic tweeters in Africa, producing the most posts on the continent with more than five million tweets in the last three months of 2011, according to a report released in January.

  • Jesse Palmer - 2012-06-22 15:07

    And they went and put it in a mall in Cape Town where the people actually afford ice tea. Why not put it in a neutral mall where it would be more beneficial?

      jcoetzee1975 - 2012-06-22 15:18

      Because the poor sods in those malls don't know what a friken tweet is.

      john.loveland.9 - 2012-06-22 15:35

      Duh... can those who cant afford the tea afford to twitter?? Also seems a bit pointless to try marketing a product in an area where you know they can't afford it.... Would be like Porsche setting up a showroom in a squatter settlement

      lydonmcg - 2012-06-22 16:01

      I really hope you aren't in marketing.

      Bardy - 2012-06-22 16:09

      What an idiotic comment by Jesse... O_o??? Anyway... In which mall is it? I want to try it out! LOL!

  • bmaestro - 2012-06-22 15:09


  • Felix - 2012-06-22 15:09

    suddenly: 100 000 tweets.

  • rosiegracebrooks - 2012-06-22 15:34

    Hah, we did a follow us and get free coffee campaign before. First ever my ass.

      lydonmcg - 2012-06-22 16:02

      Yes, because that's TOTALLY the same as a machine dispensing you an iced tea every time you @ tweet it.

      TSR01 - 2012-06-23 22:38

      @rosiegracebrooks: Unless you're a cyborg that dispenses free coffee from your integrated coffee brewing unit when someone "follows" your site on Facebook? :)

  • donald.swanepoel - 2012-06-22 16:21

    Here's a video of how it works

  • linda.schalk1 - 2012-06-22 16:33

    Technology is evolving tremendously,,in Singapore theres a Coca-Cola machine it dishes out Coca-Cola Softdrinks for free if it hugged...mmmh,why dont they keep this 1,here in Zillesville

  • kosmonooit - 2012-06-24 20:00

    Good PR stunt

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