We all see the marketing ploys retailers use to get us to buy more. One establishment in particular is taking this annoyance to a new level. I know you’ve seen the “Buy One Get One Free” signs everywhere, but walking in the mall the other day, I saw the “Buy three get one free” sign. Good Heavens, why would I want four items?
Specialty stores are notorious for this type of sale. They try to reach their sales zenith especially around the holidays by forcing us to buy products that are rather personal in nature; soap, colognes, perfumes, and bathing products. There’s nothing more warm and fuzzy than telling someone you love, “Merry Christmas Aunt Edna, you need to take a shower.” You can’t deny this assertion because you’ve just gift-wrapped four bottles the size of car batteries filled with body wash and given them to lesser friends and family. While you’ve kicked the proverbial stuffing out of your friend’s self esteem, let’s throw in some acne facial scrub to really pop what’s left of their happy balloon.
This type of sales madness extends to shoe stores and grocery stores as well. I saw a “Buy Two Get a Third Pair of Shoes Free” sign this weekend. My suggestion, why not sell me one pair of sneakers at 33% off? If I run a marathon anytime soon (this of course falls in the category of: “wouldn’t it be great honey to have another teen?”) I’ll come back for the other two pair of shoes if that happens. Then I’ll want only cleats! Come to think of it, it would work for both scenarios.
My local grocery store apparently wants my home looking like a warehouse. They incessantly run buy 10 items of the same thing, save X amount sale. If I bought into this, I can just imagine first-time guests in my home saying, “Do you have free samples? I feel like I’m on aisle 9 at Sam’s Club!”
Thank goodness my wife is past the pregnancy test phase in our life. Wouldn’t ten kits in the medicine cabinet make our friends think we were a tad bit overzealous? Admit it, you take peaks in people’s medicine cabinets don’t you?
While food packaging gets smaller, regular household items are getting larger. A four pack of light bulbs? Forget it. I can now change all the street lamps along Interstate-40 for ten miles with the box I just got. When was the last time you got toilet tissue in a four-roll package? Ha, thanks to my local retailer, I’m the go-to guy at my condo complex if you run out of tissue. The gargantuan double roll variety package I just placed in my cart, should come with a $5 off coupon to the local chiropractor. I hurt my back putting it in the car trunk.
I end with this caveat. The only appropriate time to use a “Buy Free” sign is if you have a cat and it’s pregnant. Then a “Buy One Get Three Free” sign is not only permissible, it’s mandatory.