After I ordered 4 meals at full price I see that they're having a contest of some sort. They've attached pull off tickets on every super duper large cup and you peel the tickets off in order to see if you won... or so you think!
What actually ends up happening after you pull the ticket off of the cup is you realize they're asking you to enter your code online to see if you won!!!
Are you kidding me? This has to be a joke right! Of course, at this point I'm pretty ticked off and that's why I'm getting upset (aka losing objectivity) because the truth of the matter is that this kind of marketing happens all the time. It's just like the mail-in rebates that I let lure me into Circuit City or Best Buy, only to lose a week later. Businesses are based on the people that don't follow through with mailing stuff in or with going online to enter their code and see if they won a free song from Yahoo! Music.
But Wait There's More
At this point I knew it was only going to get worse but I had also already decided I was going to rant about Arbys deceitful marketing on my blog anyway... Yes I did it, I went online and tried to enter my contest codes.
Then I realized they required me to register, just to enter a coupon code for a lousy song on Yahoo. But again, at this point I'm in it for market research cause I knew it was going to get ugly. So I registered using a fake name, my brother's cell phone, and my real zip code.
First You Register, Then They Collect Your DNA
Well they don't collect your dna but you can't log into Arbys.com and enter your contest codes until you fill out a survey regarding the frequency of your visits to fast food restaurants and your favorite delicasy on Arby's menu. No, I'm not kidding, they actually get you to fill out a survey, just for the chance to win a prize that's worth $1. Does anybody actually do this stuff?
But Wait, It Gets Even Better
Of course I didn't read the official contest rules because there was no need to do that. I mean, why would I need to read a 10 page document that tells me about how they're going to require a ton of data from me and that I would win nothing for prividing this valuable market research?!
So I finally enter the code off of my cup (remember I had two contest codes to enter because Shannon had a drink too) and it tells me I've won but that they'd email the details to me...
Ha ha ha, of course they're doing this to validate my email address (helps thwart spam attempts and gives them the ability to double-opt you into their email address without you realizing it. Of course it also ensures you put a valid email address in your registration form... Thank goodness for GMail
So after it tells me I won I decided to enter the second contest code. Then I was informed that I am only eligible to enter a single coupon code in any given day. What kind of sense does that make? I mean, that's like saying I'm only allowed to purchase one meal from them per day. At this point I'm feeling that their contest and entire marketing plan was even more ruthless and one-sided than any company I've ever purchased something from previously.
Final Thoughts - Arbys Boycott
Honestly, I'm not going to redeem the first song I won, nor will I enter the code for the second cup.