Friday, November 26, 2010

simplehuman's black-cyber fri-monday "game" is not left to chance

Dear simplehuman,

I love your products. In fact, every room in my apartment has at least one item of yours in it except our living room. However, you don't get marketing. Every email you send me is basically a "buy our product" email--no special deals that make me even want to consider leaving my email and browsing the site.

But today you sent me an email worth checking out: a game where I can win a simplehuman product worth up to $200. So, I clicked the link.

At the page, I'm asked to fill in my email address and you wish me good luck as I watch a grid light up with all the different prizes. Some of which are indeed up to $200. The grid flashes the same way each time. It cycles through all the products, then does a one-trick pony move where it highlights the middle, bottom, the middle right, and finally the far middle right square, revealing that I've won an odor absorbing kit for $5.99, one of your cheapest products.

This seemed strange to me, so I tried to play the game again, and got the same exact sequence ending in the same exact prize. So then I tried clearing my cookies. Same thing. Tried a different browser. Same thing. Wife tried. Same thing. I finally asked someone on twitter, who tweeted about the awesome "game" (a tweet which was retweeted by you) and she, too, got the same thing: a $5.99 odor absorbing kit.

@mpaul I just played the simplehuman game and got the odor absorbing kit as well.
--@MintCool 

Seems that the cool "deal" is nothing more than a free odor absorbing kit which I can only get if I add something else to my shopping cart. Translation: a lame way to spur holiday sales. 

To the simplehuman marketing director and all other marketing directors who live in the internet age: please offer the public some serious deals if you want to spur sales. Be genuine, and honest. Give the consumer a fair shake, not some rigged deal where they're forced to buy something in order to get $5.99 taken off their order for something they probably never wanted in the first place.

I'm happy to tell people about you guys, but when you rig the game like this, nobody wins.

Your customer,

Mike

Posted via email from michael paul's posterous