ICYMI: these glorious sugary rainbows of greatness were being given away 12 ounces at a time on July 11. Free. (Get it? 7 [July] 11?)
It’s been a tradition since 2002 that anyone can waltz inside a local 7/11, grab a small 12 oz. cup, and fill up on this sweet elixir of Texas love (born here, based here, y’all). This year, something went awry when 7-Eleven attempted to bring more technology to the mix. For months, the convenience empire has been promoting its fun little ‘Only at 7-Eleven’ app. When you download it, you would benefit from push-text offers sent exclusively to your phone.
Only, that didn’t happen for some folks, and America went nuts.
Everyone has to get a one-up on the competition, and to do that, most retailers reach out to mobile technology because smartphones are a thing. This year, 7-Eleven was going to brain freeze the world with its novel approach to birthday celebrations and free giveaways.
To redeem those offers, customers were told to download the 7-Eleven app to access coupons. Anything from free Big Gulps to discounts on grub, it was all available through the new app (and helped this cub reporter quench his thirst on July 11). And then, halfway through the day, according to this story by BetaBeat, customers didn’t get said coupons and took to Twitter.
@7eleven downloaded your app, no bar code with the offer for free big gulp. Left my big gulp and other merchandise on counter and walked out
— Frank Novak (@franknovakPR) July 12, 2014
Most companies would have run and tucked tail because this can be embarrassing. Sure, it’s easy to blame technology given how many people were trying to access those coupons. And in this economy, giving away stuff can be pricey.
So did they? Nope, #PRWin to the company based in North Texas. Instead, they decided to party on for the rest of the month.
The party’s back July 15th-July 24th. That’s 3 extra days of party-ness. Download the 7-Eleven App to redeem: pic.twitter.com/d0N1sBLYse
— 7-Eleven, Inc. (@7eleven) July 14, 2014
“Yes, because of the high demand for our 7-Eleven week offers, we experienced some technical difficulties over the weekend with the offer section of the 7-Eleven App,” Margaret Chabris, 7-Eleven’s director of corporate communications (per this story from USA Today). “After we learned there was a problem, we closed the 7-Eleven Week offers until we were confident we could provide them again.”
So, get a pad, paper, and download the app, kids. 7-Eleven announced the following new promotion schedule for all of us to enjoy, and promises it’ll go better this time:
July 15: Free Hostess® Twinkie® (single serve)
July 16: Free SNICKERS® or TWIX ® Brand Ice Cream bar
July 17: Free Quaker® Chewy® Yogurt Snack Bar
July 18: Free Pillsbury Cookie (all flavors)
July 19: Free Small Slurpee drink
July 20: Free Big Gulp® drink
July 21: Free M&M Birthday Cake Candy
July 22: Free Grandma’s Sandwich Crème Cookies (3.0–3.025 oz size)
July 23: Free Big Gulp® drink
July 24: Free Small Slurpee drink