Pepsi’s Apple iTunes promo nightmare, only 5 million songs redeemed total

“Apple Computer said Wednesday that about 5 million free songs have been given away through a Pepsi promotion, far fewer than the 100 million tracks that could have been redeemed. An Apple representative said the music giveaway was probably the biggest ever of its kind but admitted that the company gave away fewer songs than it had intended,’ Ina Fried reports forCNET News. “‘We had hoped the redemptions would have been higher,’ said Katie Cotton, Apple’s vice president of worldwide corporate communications. Customers with winning bottle caps have until Friday to redeem their free music tracks.”

“Cotton noted that the yellow-capped bottles with the Apple song codes were late in reaching some key markets. However, Cotton said the promotion did introduce a lot of people to iTunes. The 5 million free tracks Pepsi gave away were included as part of Apple’s statement earlier Wednesday that it has sold 70 million songs in the first year of its music service. Apple said last fall that it hoped to distribute 100 million tracks in its first year, but when that figure was calculated it was expected that more winning bottle caps would be redeemed,” Fried reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Not good. Not good at all. It’s nice to see our suspicions confirmed that Apple would be counting the Pepsi giveaway songs in the one year anniversary total, but only 5 million redemptions? Now, where the hell are those other 95 million caps?!


  1. I worked a private party a few weeks ago and they were serving Pepsi. They were pouring the Pepsi from yellow capped Pepsi bottles and when a bottle was empty they just threw away the bottle and the cap. I caught a couple of winners before they made the trash, but they went through a lot of Pepsi that night and trashed a lot of winning bottle caps.

  2. According to Forbes, Real’s Rhapsody is ahead of iTMS

    “Real Networks (nasdaq: RNWK – news – people ) said that as of April 15 it had 450,000 subscribers who were buying 1.8 million songs per day on its Rhapsody music download and subscription service. “

    Apple only sells 2.7 million songs per week.

    I can see Forbes checks their data thoroughly before going to press.

  3. The Pepsi bottle had a small info saying that win iTunes songs.. the cover must have been entirely different for those kind of pepsi’s rather than making the caps different.

    Too many people did not look carefully and too many were ignorant, and it is all in the trash.

  4. Forbes is wrong. 1.8 million songs per day were not “sold” they were subscribed to, not “sold.” Meaning the songs were played by subscribers. Or an average of just 4 songs per day played by each subscriber (1.8 million songs/450,000 subscribers). Hardly a rousing success.

  5. Okay, so I live in rural America. Not too far from civilization, but also not a “key market” unless you’re selling manure spreaders.

    There are a few stores around here I visit regularly and I make it “to town” (i.e. the civilization that’s not too far away) at least once a week.

    I never once saw a yellow-capped iTunes Pepsi bottle for sale anywhere.

    Maybe they’ll show up sometime next week, once the redemption period has ended.

  6. It took months for the bottles to appear here in San Diego. I really think they ought to extend it. I know I am heading to the recycling place today. See if they have any lying around.

  7. I work in the “promotion” business. This is standard practice. It’s all about publicity. You delay the rollout, so the redemptions stay low. Most of the 300 million Pepsi bottles will hit stores after the redemption period has ended, Apple most probably was too green in this type of matter to know what Pepsi was doing. Pepsi was just doing what they and other companies normally do with these type of promotions. Pepsi didn’t want a lot of redemptions, of course. They wanted the publicity. And they got that in spades – thanks to Apple’s hot iTunes and iPod, everybody and their mother wrote FREE news articles about this promotion. Whomever ran this deal for Pepsi just got a big raise!

  8. With McDonald’s good news today maybe Steve should have pushed for a better Clown deal. I used Pepsi to dissolve the corrosion off of my battery terminals on my ’62 Studebaker Champ Pickup yesterday. Worked great! Then I drove to McDonald’s to pick up a number 2. Ordered it with a Coke!

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