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robotic vending machines

Consumers Can Now Play Games on a Vending Machine

When it comes to the growth of the vending machine industry my first thought is, “what about the people wanting to buy snacks or drinks at the same time”? I’d like an answer to that, as our sales depend on availability and convenience of the vending machine. I’ll keep an upbeat attitude about this possible future use of our machines, but you bet we’ll keep an eye on the developments, too.
The scenario in the title above, however, will more than likely become a possibility, according to Steve Smith’s article “Will vending machines be your Phone’s Next Tandem Screen”? In his May 17, 2012 article in MediaPost Publications.
Your phone’s ability to interact with other screens may well go beyond we’re accustomed to that of linking with the television.
We already know of people m-paying for their Cokes with their phones. According to Vendor’s Exchange International, makers of “smart” vending machines with touch screen ability, their next step will be to turn your candy vending machine, for example, into an interactive touch screen. With your phone in hand, you’ll be able to approach the vending machine and it will scan a code off your phone and trigger a game. If you win, you might get a discount off your next purchase or even a free coke or candy bar.
The coming technology seems to turn digital screens of all types, including signage and vending machines, into an interactive screen that can be connected to your phone in order to purchase something.
Frost & Sullivan has done research that shows that these “smart” vending machines will see a compound annual growth rate of 49 percent. One goal seems to be cashless payments, which some beverage manufacturers believe will help raise average sales per machine.
I have some reservations about all this “progress”? Will vending machine services such as this become the way of the future? Will we find a way to make it helpful? Will a person wanting to use the candy vending machines want to wait for people to complete a game? That game will have to be very quick. After all, these candy vending machines and beverage vending machines were supposed to supply some energy to make it through the rest of the day!
It looks like the manufacturers- and, through them, the consumers, will make the decisions of the on the vending machine services of the future, and that’s a good thing.

Hugging a Robotic Vending Machine Brings Rewards to Consumers and Marketers

What if your workplace vending machine only received hugs, not crisp dollar bills? Would you be willing to give it a huge for a nice, refreshing cola?

At Coca Cola, this bizarre idea has allowed the company to totally vamp up its marketing scheme. An interactive vending machine that only responses to hugs instead of cash is definitely turning many heads at University of Singapore. An idea that may seem absurd to many, Coca Cola’s brilliant idea has surprised many companies who found this unique idea to be truly enigmatic.

Usually vending machine companies confirm to the traditional, boring way of procurement which does not appeal to consumers.  However, this new campaign has truly gone viral online and with social media platforms, consumers, and marketing teams globally.  Conducive research indicates that a pop machine in general struggles to gain revenue with the drop of 11% of sales. This alarming fact has been the main catalyst for companies to think “outside the box.”

The vending machine industry has been through many innovative ideas. More and more vending companies are adding credit card readers to their machines.  Some even look like robots with smiling faces. In our last blog post, the concept of “diaper boxes” was explained,  which allows moms to utilize vending machines to purchase diapers.

Some vending machines can teach golf lessons. Some dispense skin products, technology, and even ice cream.

These ideas have allowed  companies to make very decent profits, while increasing their brand equity towards customers. These examples are all good models for marketing plans, as these new and bizarre ideas will build a good foundation to enhance sales.

A soda vending machine in our technology-heavy era must appeal to their consumers in a new and exciting way. New marketing tactics allow companies to truly market their brand name from another channel–emotion. Selling products such as soft drinks can be challenge for many companies as the unit price per product may seem minimal. The new marketing scheme for Coca Cola allows pop machines to be more exciting and friendly.

In essence, vending machine companies are learning to attach a psychological appeal to their machines that allows consumers to associate brand names with feelings. Without a doubt, more consumers would be inclined to associate words such as happy and friendly with Coca Cola after using their new machine in Singapore. Other companies, such as Pepsi, must now find better channels to attract to their customer base. With Coca Cola continuing to make a huge splash, competitors and other retailers must come with creative ways to sell merchandise. Even though a new and innovative soda vending machine is a hefty financial investment for companies, this new pop machine and others like it is the future for most vending companies.