Consumer Victim 101: 3 tactics to avoid

As the first official days of  holiday shopping begin my email box is constantly occupied my messages from retailers begging me for my hard earned money. Don’t get me wrong SquareBall Marketing is in the business of helping certain retailers market to certain consumers, however we focus on the small business owner and have no problem exposing the mega powers of such retailers who participate in event like Black Friday.

Below you will find three perfectly legal, almost logical, and very common tactics of the a-fore-mentioned retailers:

1. “This is our biggest sale of the year”

Sure it is, until you say the same thing next week. Have you ever noticed that once you leave a store who was having the biggest sale of the year you still spent a boat load of money. This is because retailers are not and have never been in the business of saving consumers money. Unlike a saving account, in order to ” save” at a store you must spend. So you are spending to save? Yeah makes no sence right? Lesson 1 dont break yourself for a sale. Okay if you were going to purchase that item anyway, but never overextend your hard earned money based on the promises of a retailer.

2. “Save and extra (x) %when you open a line of credit”

You want me to do what? Let me put this into perspective. You want me to open a charge account at a specific store where I normally only shop at a couple times of year, exposing my credit worthiness and financial sanity just to save an extra couple bucks on some shoes and a few ties, in which my savings will probably be blown at the food court on one of those sugary pretzels? I’m not sure its worth the negative effects this could potentially have on your credit report. Best advice, look for coupons ands promotion codes online. Remember cash and carry with no strings attached is the best way to shop.

3. “With mail-in rebate”

These words might be the biggest bubble buster of all those exciting glossy ads we  see this time of year. For some who have mastered the skill of  mail-in rebates this is not a problem. But for the generation who does not even know where to buy a stamp or thinks mail only comes to a smartphone inbox, you’re in for a treat this year. First of all these deals often seem so good because they really are! Trust and believe, the retailers knows this too. The only way mail-in rebates work is if you mail them. Retailers advertise these deals because they bank on us (consumers) not sending them in. Its one of the only ways to advertise something at a discounted price, sell it for regular price and not get in trouble. Only 3-5% of rebates are ever claimed and paid out. Please be in that number, better yet, don’t fall for it to begin with!

Stay tuned for more tactics to avoid!

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