I don’t know if it’s just me, but some of the sales gimmicks going around over the past 12-18 months have been getting slowly more rediculous.

Recently, Coral have been advertising ‘Free’ 42″ HD TV’s if you place an order with them. Doesn’t seem to rediculous you may think, if the customer buys a conservatory the TV will come in handy.

A bit more on the stupid side is an offer by a company last year which was advertising a free puppy if you placed an order with them. I can’t remember the name of the company, which is a shame because I think the same company had another stupid give away, if I remember what that was I’ll update this post!

Another stupid sales gimmick is ‘we pay the VAT’. Well, no they don’t. Everyone pays VAT. 17.5% gets worked into cost just for it to be taken back off again, desguised as ther VAT being taken off. Customers aren’t that gullable that they think they can get away from the tax man. Companies should give the consumer a bit more credit.

A fourth gimmick that never impresses me is the ‘we pay you for your old windows’ tactic. Come on, who in their right mind is seriously going to believe that any company, especially in times as hard as these are going to give you the customer money for your old crappy windows. Even if it was half plausable, the customer wouldn’t get cash in their hand, it’ll just be used as a ‘discount’ and worked into the price to be taken back off again.

I guess what I’m getting as is that the more of these spur of the moment advertising gimmicks spring up, the more desperate companies are going to luck. Consumers are going back to basics now. They want to know about the product, the company. Not how much they can get discounted if they sign right this second. They don’t want a free TV, they want a product that is going to perform well.

I’m not saying sales tactics don’t work. Some of them do. But free TV’s, pets, no VAT and ‘buying your old windows’ are gimmicks which makes companies look desperate. There’s something wrong if a company has to resort to these ways of selling, rather than selling on the merits of their own products.