Thursday, July 17, 2008

What attracts consumers: Free Samples, Coupons or Expensive, cool, sexy products

Like a few weeks ago, I was again walking up and down on Michigan Ave (in Chicago) and as a co-incidence M&M was again handing out their new ice cream bars. There were people all over with their ice cream. It was 90 degrees outside and I am sure consumers were enjoying it to the fullest. They did have the truck full of bars and people were consuming them fast.

While, walking back I passed the Apple store and I saw this long line – longer than the one for the M&M ice cream bars, I thought, "Wow! is Apple giving away something for free?" I asked someone in the line – "What is this line for" and she said "For the iPhone". I thought, on one end there are people in line to get free ice cream and on the other end people are standing in line to get the iPhone which is $199 and then a monthly service of $79. What a contrast!

Then a few more blocks near the Tribune building I see these two guys with the golden arches -"McDonalds" giving away coupons (Buy one get one free) for the Iced Coffee and there was no even a single person taking coupons from them.

It is just so amazing to see three such strong brands and the differences in how consumers perceive about them.

If I were to measure these three I think Apple is the clear winner as they were the only one making revenue and are locking down consumers with a 2 yr contract with AT&T, so not only is there a onetime cost but also a monthly cost and now with the new applications they are even charging for them as well.

Oh! and then there was this guy who had the M&M ice cream and the Coffee coupon, not sure if he bought the $199 iPhone.

1 comment:

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