I am not one of those people and you probably aren’t either.
I usually don’t read the newspaper anymore, so I don’t remember the last time I saw a coupon, but I have noticed a surge of online coupon companies like Groupon and Living Social, presenting their daily deals.
Their ads are usually eye catching and the considerable savings they sometimes offer can seem irresistible.
If you’ve ever justified a purchase by saying, “It was on sale” or “I only paid…”, then please keep reading. Everyone likes a bargain, and if you aren’t paying attention, you might think you are getting one.
Why Daily Deals are Dangerous…
Dangerous To Consumers
- They steal your time. When you sign up to receive the deal of the day, you will get at least one every day in the form of an email. (+ more from their sponsors) You will take the time to open the email, consider the offer, click through to research the deal and send it to your friends.
- They steal your money. There may be a great deal on something that you already buy, but chances are, you are going to try something new (because it is such a great deal). You will spend money that you did not plan to spend. The next time you consider spending money to save money, please try and explain to yourself how that really works.
- They steal your attention. In your attempt to lead a simpler life, you might find you spend less time at the mall and you don’t consider shopping to be a recreational activity anymore. Congrats! Now that you aren’t gazing through store windows and trying on shoes all afternoon, make sure that attention didn’t turn to shopping for a deal, just because it’s in your in-box.
Dangerous To Businesses
- They steal your time. You will spend a great deal of time considering this advertising option. You will spend even more time trying to manage it.
- They steal your money. Coupon customers are typically not long term clients. If you do something cheap for them once, they will not come back and pay full price. When you devalue your services, your message is that you can do it and sell it for less, and that becomes the expectation. You may notice an temporary increase in traffic, but a decrease in profitability.
- They steal your attention. While you are giving your valuable services away, your current client base will suffer because they will not have your attention. You’ll be thinking about how to please your new coupon crowd, instead of your hard core customer. Instead of giving free stuff and discounted rates to consumers who don’t match the demographic of your clientele, give something to your clients for referring your business to their friends. Don’t you want more people like them?
Once upon a time, I used to spend precious Sunday morning hours pouring through the newspaper. I usually skimmed the headlines on the front page and then went to the beautiful, fat (at the time) advertising section, where you could read about sale after sale, and see all the new and exciting things department stores and make-up counters had to offer.
Because of minimalist fashion Project 333, I don’t pay attention to sales anymore. All the great discounts I’ve received over the years never resulted in more money in my savings account. The only thing a good deal has giving me is a little ego boost, like I was so clever to buy those extra pair of shoes because they were “buy one, get 50% off”. I only needed one pair of shoes for $50, but landed 2 pairs for $75…not so clever.
If your love affair with the daily deal has gotten too serious, break it off. Just because something costs less shouldn’t make it more desirable. More affordable yes, more valuable, no. Do you find daily deals, sales and discounts hard to pass up?