Friday, 9 January 2009

How lame - and cheap - is that?

Now, I've always prided myself on being a real meanie when it comes to books. Avid book buyer that I am, this is no time to not look out for the best specials and discounts!

I browse discount stores, look out for sales, and am very much in favour of giveaways. Hurrah!

This has made me just a bit too much of a Berkelouw's outlet store junkie, and I also signed up for the Borders enewsletter, which gives away coupons each week, usually 2 coupons (and has sometimes surprised us with three).

Coupons can be printed out and presented to Borders and say things like "20% off any full-priced title" or "30% off any kids' book" or "30% off any CD" or "Buy 'The Jane Austen Book Club for $14.95'" or "Buy any 3 Science Fiction titles for the price of two".

These have all been great fun and some of the coupons are better than others, and some aren't ones that I use if they don't fit in with a title that I want to buy.

Just lately, though, Borders has been putting out some really newsletters.

In the section where the coupons are, it writes down "deals" but they are in-store deals, ones that aren't specially available to the people who get the newsletter, you just get them if you walk into the store, and underneath each promotionis written "No coupon necessary"

For instance, if they are selling teddy bears they might write "Get our teddy bears for $19.95 each - no coupon necessary!"

Ahh yeah.

Or "20% off selected summer reads - no coupon necessary!" which simply means that there will be a 20% off table or area in Borders when you walk in.

The whole thing is written in the section where the coupons used to sit in a Borders enewsleter which psychologically makes you think it's a great deal, and also means that no one has to change the format of the newsletter around. If they don't want to offer a coupon this week, they just stick one of those "no coupon necessary" ones on the coupon section and send it off to you.

It's happening so often, if they aren't going to be bothered with coupons, at least for quite a few newsletters, I think they should devise a whole newsletter that looks different. One that doesn't look like it involves coupons, instead of one looking like it involves LAME coupons.

The very fact that they need to write in small writing "No coupon necessary" means that they know that many people are used to coupons being attached to that area and expect them to be there, so saying "Oh, we aren't obliged to give out coupons and we just wrote that there to promote our sale!" is nonsense.

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