eBay Sales: 0

Craft projects completed: 0

#MilWordy Update: 59,201 words (2834 words/day to complete on time.) 

Spent most of the day attempting to find new sneakers for me and Mom. That involved 2+ stores, a rollator, and a fine selection (3 whole pairs for Mom to choose from. 6 for me) of sneakers from brands that I normally don’t think about. I ended up buying 2 pairs. Mom found 1. And I had to shut down the clerk three times to get out of being drafted into the rewards program. I have enough companies trying to sell me things every day or trying to get me to “bounce back” to the store with coupons. 

The fact that I get serious coupons every day from at least three stores only makes me think that what they’re selling is overpriced. Swear down, the Halloween merch was on sale before it was even October. I didn’t buy a single thing for Halloween that wasn’t on sale this year. This is the point where I could go on a little rant about capitalism and the over-production of merchandise and the globalization of business, but I’m going to restrain myself. 

I am going to talk about bounce-back coupons. This is something I learned about when I was working retail. What it basically means is that rather than putting something on sale, you give the customer a coupon or “cash” which can only be used in-store during a certain period of time. How many coupons or how much “cash” depends upon how much the customer bought. Say she bought $100 of merchandise. She receives a coupon for $25 off of her next $100 purchase. Or she’s just received a 25% off coupon.

This works because she has to come back into the store to cash in her “savings” from the previous trip. This means that she will be more likely to buy not only enough to trigger the coupon’s savings, but a little extra. Because when she comes back we will either once again offer her “cash” or a coupon or a special offer that’s only good say… one month in the future. This is why it’s called a “bounce back.” The customer goes out, but bounces back into the store and it’s associated advertising and appealing layout the next month. This is an attempt to create a habit of not only shopping in the store, but shopping there regularly. 

I’ve used this idea for pre-orders, actually. If there is a series of books which comes out on a regular basis, the press offers pre-orders for the next book which are sent out with the book which was ordered. “Order now and get free shipping on the next book.” This only really works when the press is the one who is sending out the book, but that’s the point. We’d much rather that people bought directly from the press than through a major retailer. It means that the press and the authors get a higher payout from each book. (hint. hint. If an author is sending you to a publisher’s page, it’s likely because of this.)

It works as long as you have a consistent product or presence. Craft stores do this too. They offer a 50-60% off coupon for one item, knowing that as long as they get you into the store, the likelihood that you’ll find more items is very high. I can barely remember the last time I walked out of a craft store with only the one thing I went in looking for. 

On-line retailers do it too. Especially clothing retailers or cosmetic retailers. They’ve learned the trick of it. It works and it’s honestly, not particularly shady or manipulative. Not compared to other marketing techniques. Because it’s a lot easier to not cash-in a coupon than it is to get out of an automatic subscription after a free trial, for example.

All marketing is based on manipulation. ALL marketing. Including and especially political marketing. Just try to be aware of what’s happening and try to find the actual research or actual policies of the people you’re voting for and the issues you’re voting on. (Bond issues or individuals are not one-sided.)

That’s your little lecture for the day. Hope it helps someone out. 

Love, laughter, and autumnal leaves, Lieblings. (I’m going to run out of gender neutral nicknames soon. Can you help out? Leave a comment below. Thanks!) 

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