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Getting Coupons for the Products That You Actually Use

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Some years ago, I used to buy the Sunday paper for the Detroit area in order to get the coupon inserts. After looking through the coupons, it was a really good day if I found 5 or more coupons that I could use. After a while, I quit buying the paper because I didn’t save enough money with coupons to justify purchasing the paper. Well, it turns out there may be a way to get coupons for the products that you use!

Thanks to this article in the Dollar Stretcher, I am going to try contacting the companies that make the brands that we like to buy. Email will be my method of contacting them and I will write a short email thanking them for their product and then asking if they have any coupons available.

The woman who wrote the article for the Dollar Stretcher had great success. Out of 74 email and phone contacts made, she received coupons from 51 of the companies. Not too shabby for taking a few minutes to send a quick email.

I am so intrigued by all this, that I am going to give it a shot. There are definitely a few brands that we love that sometimes go on sale. Use the coupons when the product is on sale and you can save big bucks!

Now for an update, you may remember that a while ago I mentioned that the company that holds some of my debt was having a promotion for a tasty treat that you could receive by referring people to the company. Since I blogged about my entire experience with them, I decided to email them to see if I could qualify for the tasty treat, which was actually so unlikely of me to do. I finally told myself, “What harm could I do by trying?”

Well, almost two weeks later I haven’t even received a response. Sort of a bummer they didn’t even reply. Oh well…I tried πŸ˜‰


19 Comments

  • Reply Sara |

    You know, it never hurts to ask.

    We brought our vehicle in for new tires on the 31st, and the guy seemed like he really wanted us to come pick it up that day, even though we’d preferred to pick it up the next day. Well, I figured out that he was wanting to get the tires on that month’s books. So, when the vehicle was ready, I told him that I would prefer to come get it the next day, but if he would give me a discount, I would make the effort to come up there and pay him that afternoon. So he gave me $30 off. Not a huge amount, less than 5%, but it was worth the 15 minutes of time it took me to go pay.

    Keep asking!

  • Reply Allstar |

    In an attempt to get coupons for things I actually buy, I am trying this. I already contacted three companies this morning. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for some coupons in the mail!

  • Reply Finding Balance |

    I emailed Amy’s, a food company that we really like, to tell them how much we enjoy their products (high quality ingredients, no weird fillers, options for various allergies). I also mentioned that I was interested in any coupons that they might have (they don’t usually do ads in the paper), and they sent me a whole bunch of coupons in the mail. It took me a total of 5 minutes, and I got some great deals on great products!

    Great post!

  • Reply Fellowes |

    It absolutely never hurts to ask for things, although I must say it never occurred to me to try this with the companies whose products I buy. My guess is that companies would want to keep their loyal customers and reward them with a discount. We will find out if this holds true when I call Alaska Airlines this morning to complain about my weekend travel woes.

  • Reply danielle |

    I don’t think it’s worth it to actually *try* to save money with coupons. Usually, the coupons are for the very expensive brands, and you usually save even more by getting off brands for regular price. The off brands are often really nice.

  • Reply zen |

    I’m going to try this, too! We don’t get the paper, so we miss out on coupons, and the ones we do get are for items we never use.

    Of course, two weeks waiting is small potatoes with most companies’ response times – I figure it will be a month until a response is heard!

  • Reply Elizabeth |

    Re. the company that gives away the tasty treat…depending on how big the give away is (that is, whether it’s worth it to you) I would *definitely* recommend trying again. However, instead of sending an email, which can easily go to a generic address and be read by a lower-level employee, I would call the company and get the name of their head of PR (ideally) or customers relations. You are very, very hot right now, having been in the NYTimes twice in last month, on the radio and also in another article that I’ve just forgotten. Believe me, a company would be thrilled with the free PR you offer them, you just haven’t reached someone high up enough, or with the level of accountability, to know how much you are worth to them and to be able to take care of you.

    I was a VP of a venerable New York company for 3 1/2 years and take my word for it, we’d be delighted to be getting free publicity on your site. Maybe you can think of other ways to leverage all the heat and publicity you’ve got right now. For one thing, I think you should write a book about your family’s journey out of debt. You are a very engaging writer.

  • Reply Arduous |

    I agree with Elizabeth 100%. I would pick up a phone and CALL instead of emailing which is more passive.

  • Reply Debt Hater |

    I used to do the Grocery Game with the coupons I got in Sunday’s paper, but, like you, they were always coupons for things I never buy. It wound up costing me money between paying for the game and buying the Sunday paper. Now I just stick to me $30 – $40 a week for groceries and don’t bother with coupons unless I get a good one for things I normally buy… but this idea sounds good and I’ll give it a try myself. Thanks for the tip!

  • Reply Tricia |

    danielle – sometimes it is a better value to buy the off-brands. But, there are some name brands that go on sale and then they are cheaper than the off-brands. If I could get some coupons for those products and use the coupons when they are on sale…that would be super saving! You bring up a good point that sometimes coupons do not save you anything if you buy things that you don’t need with them!

    Elizabeth – It would be nice if I could figure out how to leverage the publicity. I’ve received a few offers for things, but either I don’t hear back or I have turned them down due to the subject material. This is the hard part of blogging when you try to make money with it.

    You are not the first to mention that I should think about writing a book. I thank you for the compliment. It sounds interesting and exciting to do that, but the last thing I would want is to make others have to pay to read my story. If they are interested, they are in debt just like me and every penny counts. Perhaps I could write a free e-book. I still have some time to think about it for the final chapter here will not be written for a while πŸ˜‰

  • Reply bluntmoney |

    I’ve had good luck with doing this. Not every company that I contacted responded, but many did, especially my favorite brands.

  • Reply Elizabeth |

    That’s why we have libraries, where books are free!

    In addition, those who are being frugal could read the book at B+N without buying it (I’ve done that), buy it at discount, or wait for the paperback. If yours is an inspirational book that someone looks at again and again, or that lights a fire under them, it is well worth the price. And don’t forget that you’re contributing to many people’s well being with your book–not just your family’s, but the many many people employed to help your book come out–the agent, the editor, the designer, the copyeditor, the production manager, the pubicist, the printer, the person who makes the catalog, the cleaning people at the firm, the sales rep, the book buyer, the store clerk, the librarian…

  • Reply kev |

    Like Tricia, I’ve always been a fan of buying the “off” brands. For most items there are no differences in quality, and the time otherwise spent clipping coupons or contacting companies for coupons can be spent watching a baseball game! πŸ˜‰

  • Reply Daisy |

    I’m a BIG fan of generics, but there are some things that aren’t available in generic options. Like stone ground whole wheat flour. I love Hodgson Mill’s graham flour, so I emailed them to tell them that and to ask for coupons. They agreed. I haven’t received them yet, but since I buy this brand when I need whole wheat flour and it doesn’t generally go on sale, it’s worth it to me.

    I also went to Gerber’s website, and they have a form you can download and send in to request a coupong booklet. You have to include 10 UPCs, but with an 8 month-old that eats at least 4 jars of baby food a day, that wasn’t difficult for me at all!

  • Reply Tricia |

    UPDATE – I tried emailing one company right after I wrote this post and I heard back from them. They said they will be emailing me some coupons! Yay!

    This weekend I plan on trying some more πŸ™‚

  • Reply Evansvile Coupons |

    There’s absolutely no reason not to use coupons. I’ve become very fond of them, especially lately with prices in the grocery skyrocketing. Why wouldn’t you use coupons, its like free money!

So, what do you think ?