Monday, October 22, 2007

Coupon or negative numbers' marketing

I've noticed a little trend in TV commercials nowadays in Romania and it also applies to computing: new commercials or new advertisements always underline the negative number, the "user gain". Stay with me...

So, you want a new car ? Well, our car is the best: it's 1000 euro "buyer (bar)gain".

Want to be subscribed to our useless service ? How could you refuse: the first month is free!

Why don't you migrate to the new version: it's 10% faster !

Want to take a 20 year long mortgage for 100K euro ? We are the best: we give you 4K euro for free.

As you noticed, all these advertisements avoid the real issue. They avoid, the actual price (or actual speed, actual time to completion, etc).

All they brag about is that you get this discount or that super-offer. But they don't even bother to tell you the actual cost anymore.

I mean, in their mind, getting anything for free should be reason enough for people to buy their product. Makes sense to me... NOT.

My opinion is that this coupon advertisement is trying very hard to confuse the buyer. Because if anyone uses the same unit for their product like price, it's easy to compare products.

But how hard is it to compare an offer where I get 2 free months with one that gives me a free (cheap) cell-phone or another one where I may have already won an all-expense paid trip to the Bahamas. See ? It's almost impossible.

So, please, marketing gurus, stop telling me things I don't care. Tell me things I can quantify: if I get a discount, how much will it still cost ?; if your product is faster than the old one, how fast is it actually (maybe the old product ran on Cyrix processors).

The exception is when I already am a customer so I do care what I have to gain. 10% speed: sure ! Half memory usage: excellent ! Less CPU usage: even better.

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