If someone said to you, “How would you like to have an awesome deal delivered to your inbox every day, a 50% off deal (or more!)”…would you want it?
I thought I did. I signed up for Groupon. I get Syracuse, New York City and (who knows why) Cincinnati groupons. I also get Daily Deals, Living Social, and a whole slew of others.
If you’re like me, your inbox is already full enough. So why do we continue to sign up for services that send us more worthless emails, like clockwork? Every morning when I wake up, I can count on hitting delete a minimum of 20 times for the mass markdowns, not just from the group couponing sites, but from every retail store I’ve ever been dumb enough to offer my email address to!
But I digress…there are lots of emails I hate, but my rant today is strictly for the group couponers.
The problem with these? They’re not targeted: I don’t have a baby. I’ve seen Syracuse from the air; it’s not that exciting. I don’t live in Oswego. I don’t shop at stores that have names like Coldwater Creek. Wall decals? I have my own eye doctor, thank you.
I’ve bought two Groupons in my life. One for a restaurant that I probably would like, but I would only go to for lunch and I have to drive there, so I’ll never use it. The other was for Bath & Body Works. I took it into the store and the manager never even heard of Groupon (is that possible?). It was only then that I realized that it was online only…so what may have seemed like a deal was really just saving me the shipping costs. My bad on both counts.
But that’s what these group couponing sites are hoping for. They hope that you don’t read the fine print, that you lose the groupon or forget about it or never use it. They don’t care, they get their cut when you put your credit card number in.
What amazes me is that ALL of these companies are using old-fashioned marketing speak to try to sell you stuff you don’t need. I thought we were over this? I thought this was the age of transparency, one to one customer service and The Thank You Economy?
Here’s an example from yesterday’s Syracuse Groupon for half-off a helicopter ride:
“Lifting off from Hancock Airport, the sky vessel sojourns south over notable landmarks such as Carousel Center mall and Onondaga Lake. The airborne gaze upon Syracuse like an ant surveying his amoeba colony, as the chopper cuts east toward the zoo, Carrier Dome, and Syracuse University.”
Everybody raves about how witty Groupons are. Please. This is like really bad fiction. AND PEOPLE BUY IT!
So, today’s lessons are A) stop giving out your email address to everyone that asks. It’s not a law: it’s your choice, and B) Boycott needless junk in your life. All of it, including Groupons. Your wallet (and your inbox) will be glad you did.