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Sunday, August 11, 2013

My Diet Coke risk that paid off

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A couple of weeks ago, I received this e-mail:

Dear Amy,

Is Diet Coke always the first thing on your shopping list? Do you take a daily Diet Coke break?  Is Diet Coke your go-to drink? If you answered yes to any of these questions, I have quite the opportunity for you.

Diet Coke is kicking off a trial Brand Ambassador Program designed for extraordinary fans like you and we want you to be first in line. The program will consist of several campaigns that will help enlighten and educate you about Diet Coke and give you first look at some behind-the-scenes developments with the brand. We want you to help us spread the good word about a product that you already love.

Waaaahhhhhh! Where was this e-mail 5 months ago, before I gave up Diet Coke?! A chance to work with the Diet Coke brand? Holy carbonated, zero-calorie nirvana!

It was too painful to pass up the opportunity, but not really worth picking up my Diet Coke habit again. (I cut my consumption for a combination of economic and health reasons.) As I thought about it, the truth is that I've mostly given up Diet Coke, but sometimes it's just what I need. So, after several days of thinking, I replied with this:

Here is where I am with Diet Coke. I love the brand. But I cut back my consumption about 5 months ago, based on the idea that it's not good for me.

I still drink it 2-3 times/week. I love the brand itself. I still have my Diet Coke bottle from a NYC visit in my office, a  Diet Coke bracelet and will definitely hang my Diet Coke ornament from my Christmas tree this year.

I'm interested in participating primarily because I'd love to have the health info, but I'm not sure if I still fit your brand ambassador profile. If you'd be on board with an "I love it, but I want to make informed decisions" perspective, I'd love to be part.

It was a risk to answer this way, but I figured I had nothing to lose. I was honest, not compromising my integrity. If I didn't fit what they were looking for, they'd let me know.

Extraordinarily, the answer was yes, they'd still love to have me! It's a short-term, trial brand ambassador program, so there will be some #MyDietCoke posts coming from me in the next few weeks. I'd love to hear your thoughts on Diet Coke, pro and con, too.

So, how do I drink my Diet Coke now? As I said, I indulge in Diet Coke maybe 2 to 3 times per week. Almost always, if I'm going to enjoy a Diet Coke, it's in the morning on my way to work and it comes to me via the McDonald's drive-thru window.

I'm not a coffee drinker. I've been learning to drink iced tea, but on days when my eyes stay bleary longer than normal, when I need a little oomph to push me into the world of the functioning awake, nothing does the trick like Diet Coke. And for some reason, no one does Diet Coke better than McDonald's. The order is always the same -- 1 large Diet Coke for $1.09. Cheaper, and tastier, than a fancy schmancy latte from Starbucks.

Occasionally on the weekend, Mike will buy a fridge pack of Diet Coke and I might have one. If I'm drinking the bubbly stuff at home, it's over crushed ice, preferably in my Butler University or Indianapolis Colts Tervis Tumbler, and closely guarded so no one can steal a swig of it.

So how do I enjoy my Diet Coke? Like all good things in moderation.

How about you?

Disclosure: M80 contacted me on behalf of The Coca-Cola Company to participate in this brand ambassador program. I said yes all by myself.


Nickie Sattler said...

I like mine with a slice of lime and a shot of Bacardi. :)

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Nickie Sattler said...
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Anonymous said...

I am the DEFINITION of a Diet Coke Junkie. I don't just LIKE it. I LOVE it. I start every morning by making a trip to Thornton's and filling up my 64 oz UK mug. On an average day, I fill that mug up TWICE! My office installed a fountain machine with, you guessed it, Diet Coke. I was THRILLED! I do agree with you about McDonald's. They DEFINITELY have the best. A friend of mine once said she thinks they put crack in it! I think she might be right, because NO ONE has better diet Coke than McDonald's.

Mrs4444 said...

I've been a DC addict but recently stopped because I found that it was all I was drinking. I cut back and then stopped for good when I read that artificial sweetners actually make you CRAVE sugar. I quit DC, coffee, and Propel all in one week and stopped craving sugar!!

Eternal Lizdom said...

I prefer mine as a Coke Zero. :) I have it about once a week.

Sara said...

I gave up soda, too, Amy. It's hard work! But I did have a frozen Coca-Cola from Speedway yesterday because 1) it was sunny and beautiful outside, 2) I wanted a cheap refreshment, and 3) I'd been really good about not breaking my habit, but I knew that I needed to let myself indulge every once in a while. I like that Diet Coke still honored their original offer! I have a lot of respect for the brand because of that.

Erica Saint said...

I love Diet Coke, but I gave it up over a year ago. Now I enjoy it as a treat. I drink one or two a month.

Ellen aka Ellie said...

I used to drink diet Pepsi, about three cans a day. I loved diet Coke from the McD's drive through. But then I learned about the sketchiness of NutraSweet, and I worked to give it up.

Now I drink flavored seltzer water, tea, and regular H20. If I crave a soda, I have a real Coke. It tastes good.

I'm not the picture of great health, but I think I did my body a huge favor by eliminating diet soda of any kind. It can be done.

And now I'm off to run 10 miles. KIDDING, I'm kidding!

Chatterbox Media Relations said...

So Madame Ambassador, do you know what the difference between Diet Coke and Coke Zero is?

Amy said...

Chatterbox -- I posed the question to my Diet Coke contacts and this is what they said:

"Both offer great taste and no calories but Coke Zero was formulated to taste more like regular Coke." --

which is why I don't like Coke Zero...

KathyC said...

1 large diet ccoke, in a styrofoam cup, extra ice, please.
This is the standard order at McDonald's every morning on the way to work. I have gone as long as 3 days without one and then again I have been known to go to McDonald's at midnight to get one!!!! Jade said to me one day "Memaw, you know that is not good for you," and I replyed, Jade, I will probably drink this till the day I die,,,,and somebody better send one with me on my trip to heaven! Jade replyed, "Meemaw, I'm going to get you one on that day.
So I'm set!