Making quick and easy money is dream-come-true for anyone, especially any college student or recent graduate, and it seems like Dr. Pepper had a quick and easy answer to do so. Rumors and random text messages were abounding late last year, targeting college students that were willing to wrap their cars in Dr. Pepper ads in exchange for a couple of hundred dollars every month. It’s a tempting proposition, but was the soda giant really paying out for the mobile advertising?
If it’s too good to be true, it probably is
While many college students and other car owners were receiving texts and notifications of this quick money-making opportunity, a few news outlets reported on the topic and told a cautionary tale. As WCPO-9 news, a local Cincinnati-based news station, once reported, Susan Miller’s 17-year-old niece was a recent high-school graduate that was looking for a summer job. As she was filling out applications, she came across the posting for the Dr. Pepper car advertising proposition and submitted her information. Miller stated, “She was looking for work, was freshly graduated, and she went on some online job hunting sites.”
It was reported that her niece then received a text message from Dr. Pepper-Snapple to pay her for wrapping her car in advertisements, to which she gladly accepted. After a few days passed, a large envelope came in the mail, and Miller herself intercepted it. “To my surprise, she got a check from PNC bank for $2,500,” said Miller. There were instructions attached to a large check stating that half of the amount would need to be wired to the car wrap company and the other half would be kept by Miller’s niece. Fortunately, Miller’s intuition took over as she realized that there was something fishy about the whole offer.
It probably would have bounced
In case you haven’t guessed by now, the whole thing is a scam and Dr. Pepper-Snapple issued an alert that confirms it, stating:
“We do not have a program offering to wrap cars in advertising graphics for any of our brands. Anyone sending these offers does not represent Dr. Pepper Snapple Group or any of our brands and is most likely attempting a scam.”
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) even has a post on its website on “How to Spot a Car Wrap Scam,” where it details that if anyone were to actually move forward with the instructions and cashed the check, the check would likely bounce. On top of that, the money that you would keep for yourself would disappear and you would be stuck repaying it.
Fortunately, for Miller’s niece, her aunt’s cunning suspicions were enough to ward off any unfortunate circumstances. “If she had opened this (the packet), she probably would have been at the bank and cashed,” Miller said.
These scams are nothing new
Unfortunately, these scams are nothing new, especially considering the FTC released that original statement back in 2016. It makes sense that no manufacturer would be willing to pay consumers for advertising considering if any of them were to get caught speeding or cause an accident, then the company that they are advertising could somehow get looped into a legal battle. If anything, that’s what their actual paid employees are for.