Clipping old-fashioned coupons

I clip coupons. There, I’ve admitted it.

Like most people I’m looking to save money on stuff I buy. In fact 85% of Americans use coupons, so this might interest you.

Somewhere north of 320 billion coupons are issued annually, saving consumers around $3.5 billion.

And every coupon is meant to promote immediate sales and increased product sampling.

My family typically uses them to stock up on regular purchases.

I prefer paper coupons over digital ones. Paper’s easy to organize, and makes for quick decisions whether or not I’ll use a specific coupon. Digital coupons require more work than I’m willing to invest.

Fortunately, I read daily newspapers, bringing me 5-7 booklets of coupons each week. Once a month I clip and file them while watching TV, keeping the whole process painless, organized, and good for my wallet.

Last month Procter and Gamble ran an ad in one of those booklets. But they didn’t make it easy for me to give them my money.

Nope, they blew it!

The offending ad was for several cooperating P&G detergents, and it had a coupon saying (in big black letters) “$3 for 3.” Easy enough.

Then a little lower down it said in big red letters “NOT A COUPON,” and directed buyers to a web site to print a coupon.

You had a 2-week window to print it, so by the time I got my act together I had about 20 minutes until the coupon disappeared.

Then, arriving at the site I found myself clicking, and clicking, and clicking to locate the page and sort through 60 coupons for the proper one.

Admittedly, this is smart on one level, since I’ve now been exposed to many P&G products I didn’t realize they make.

However, it to work WAY too much for this paltry reward and it just wasn’t worth it to me to find the right item, print the coupon, and still need to clip it.

So I moved on and bought from a competitor instead.

Yes, P&G has a big product line. Yes, they should be experimenting to see what works.

However, unless they’re giving stuff away and collecting names for a mailing list (they weren’t), all this strategy did was cheese off a customer.

My instinct says that wasn’t their objective.

With that said, I wish you a week of profitable marketing.


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2 Replies to “Clipping old-fashioned coupons

  1. I too have had trouble printing coupons from P&G and recently even though they show the printed “ad” in the newspaper coupons when you go to their website you can not print the ones for Tide. I think they are limiting you to only getting one coupon once or twice a year. I’m totally fed up and if it wasn’t for the fact that I’ve used Tide for 50 years I would boycott their products.

    1. Sounds rather counter-productive to me. You’d think a big company like that would take the time to make their process consumer-friendly, no?

      Thanks for sharing. Here’s hoping one day they “get it”.


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