“Oh gosh, my coupon for buy one get one free bottle of orange-peach squeeze lotion from Bath and Body Works expires this week!” I thought to myself. “I better go buy one to use my coupon -wait I still have yet to open the three lotions under my cabinet!” This is the exact demanding effect coupons have on the public. The very idea of “coupons” was a marketing strategy for businesses to entice people to shop or shop more. Through advance transaction analysis, coupons convey me to believe it must be used, promoting high consumerism. By this, I result in buying more than one item to redeem the deal and ultimately buying more than that when returning to the store. Of course, none of this would be accomplished without coupons three main tactics of accessibility, membership and time restriction.

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Locally coupons are readily available in newspapers, which are present at many local small businesses, grocery stores and even sent directly to your home. More conveniently, whenever I change my mailing address like most college students I receive mail the minute I move into any house or apartment from local businesses. Even my younger siblings receive coupons from local businesses within the community through the sponsorships given to the school. Simply staying home,going to school, or just stepping into any local establishment I am not likely to escape the presents of coupons; they are practically everywhere! These free coupons clutter my home and car because they are mostly irrelevant to items I typically buy yet I hate to trash them in case by happenstance I need
use them. Of course when I do buy something, I am still given more coupons by attachment of my receipt or order generally from fast food restaurants. Free and upon purchase coupons both act as invitations asking for me to visit or visit again to buy from that specific store.

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Once I sign-up for membership, I get coupon booklets, e-mails, and even text messages promoting sales. With membership, companies are able to better know what sales interested me most. From this, my purchase patterns reveal to businesses what discounts I would most likely want, thus use. Such consistency in coupon supply, I am guaranteed to use them and eventually become a loyal customer. Memberships also tend to provide event related coupons with percentage or money off sales in celebration of some occasion within the company. Because of my devotion to the company I will seize every opportunity for a rebate in these seemingly exclusive deals. This frequency of seeing the company’s name in my mail full of vouchers also establishes a relationship with me as it shows the company’s concern in giving me more for my money.

Since locally coupons are abundant, and membership offers a lifetime of private offers, time restrictions keeps a balance in profit for businesses. Unfortunately for me, this makes my shopping habits revolve around the expiration dates of coupons. To make it easier for me I organize my coupons and send myself reminders on my laptop and phone calendar of upcoming sales. My reminders tell me when the sale begins so I can shop while the quality is high and when the sale soon ends in case I am waiting to have money to shop. Having to spend time making notes, file through which coupons to disregard what is old, and plan a trip to redeem valid coupons make tending to my consumerism quite habitual.

Without coupons I would be less likely to return to any store so soon or frequently. Rather than buying what happens to be on the coupon, I would buy the items necessary and at the quantity needed for me. I would also go shopping when truly needed or truly desired instead of when a coupon insisted me is the best time. Manipulation of boosted consumerism is the effect of coupons has on me as a result I limit how often I share my mailing address or e-mail address. I also tend to share my coupons with my family and friends.