Monday, December 01, 2014

lets discount this

With the abundance of Black Friday, Cyber Monday and TU Tuesday savings I wonder if anyone will take their enormous savings, quit work and retire. Have you noticed the word “savings” being hijacked by the advertising industry. “” is not run by a bank. No it’s actually a place to find coupons.

I’m not saying coupons are bad or worthless. You need to ask yourself, would you have bought the item regardless of the coupon? In other words, do you really want it or is the distorted savings idea playing tricks on you?

Coupons are great when you are going to buy the item anyway. They (the marketing gods a few clowns short of a circus) know that coupons are more than discounts for items. They are game pieces in the ongoing shopping games. Have you ever bragged to your friends about a great coupon you recently got to play in the shopping game?

I’m a victim of a recent coupon.

An ad in the newspaper caught my eye as I drank my morning coffee last week. A good store for computers and electronics, Tiger Direct, offered a coupon for a toy helicopter. Only, $9.99 with the coupon. Limit one per customer. (that limit is another gimmick I suspect).

Yes I knew this offer was meant to draw me away from my coffee and out to their store. While I was there I briefly shared how this offer was tough to pass up with two other older new-toy-helicopter owners. Hey for only $10 the downside of possibly being a lousy toy was reduced. I’ve spent more on a six-pack of beer when I don’t have a coupon.

Before I get to my final thoughts on the product, I want to point out a problem with their ad. It’s common practice, we have seen it but yet we still get tricked by it. The price in the ad was listed as $39.99. A $30 “savings” or discount. When I got to the store, the sale sign was closer to the truth. Without a coupon anyone could buy it for $19.99 ($39.99 was still listed as the original price). Getting it for just $10 off might not of taken me away from my morning coffee.

Just another side/tangent - Why is it when some product is discounted shoppers typically react positively, but when a stock drops (discounted, on sale?) many investors react negatively? Also, it would be nice if I could check a chart of the selling price over time of products like I can easily find the selling history of a stock.

The actual toy - for a helicopter it did not provide a very uplifting experience. Hard to control. It did take a beating of crashes ok. At one point I dropped the controller and one of the joysticks cracked off. No joy in that stick. I probably should have bought some premium craft beer instead.

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