Shoppers Buy Into Mystery Free Stuff

from the sign-up-here dept

Back in the days when people actually went to technology trade shows, they used to joke about how much useless “shwag” they would pick up. I already have too many free t-shirts and useless doodads all over the place from various tech companies. However, has found an interesting use for them. Someone pointed this out to me a few days ago, but this is the first article I’ve seen about it. Amazon is selling random promotional items. You get a special mystery “Goodie Box” filled with whatever junk Amazon decides to put in there. The price is technically $10, but it comes with a $10 rebate form. Of course, many people will probably never fill out the rebate form – and there are tons of stories of rebates deals that never get fulfilled. However, people are flocking to this “deal”. They’re signing up in droves to get this free mystery box – to the point that Amazon is all sold out right now. I imagine that Amazon will start using this as a marketing perk for some of their partners and sellers, letting “preferred” partners get rid of their promotional junk in a fairly untargeted promotion. I wonder if Amazon will start targeting the promotional materials. If they know what other books/music/whatever you’ve bought, isn’t it likely they would try to put promotional material in the box that might appeal to you? I imagine that’s how they might pitch the program to potential “donors” of promotional material. Also, since Amazon will only give free shipping if you order over $25 worth of stuff, I wonder if this is really just encouraging people to buy another $15 worth of stuff, just to get $10 worth of mysteriously free promotional items.

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Comments on “Shoppers Buy Into Mystery Free Stuff”

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Christopher Madden says:

nothing free

Duh- you NEVER get something for nothing. This is something best learned before the ages of 5 to 8. Amazon wants your $$$ – that’s it – they don’t give a hoot about you or your well-being – just your money. The word “free” inspires only the immature. Free is an illusion – get over it.

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