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Saturday, January 13, 2007

American Express My Wishlist Creates Impulse Purchasing

I have never really been an "impulse" buyer. Seldomly do I walk into a Best Buy or store and come out with a number of purchases that I did not intend to me when I started on my way in. However, I am a big fan of the American Express “My Life My Card” promotion that includes “My Wishlist”, now twice a year. For the past couple of years I have won a few useful items; Best Buy, Home Depot, etc. -- but only Wishlist coupons rather than any specific prizes. And, there have been some good prices such as the Porsche Cayman, Range Rover, Sony Wega Widescreen HD TV’s, trips to million dollar mansions internationally an much more.

Each year, it has pretty much been the same story for me. Target a couple of items, and if I happen to have some available time around when a product is made available – I try to grab one. However, I never seem to actually win a wishlist item, only the coupons.

In fact, this past year had been pretty fortunate for me, having obtained a Best Buy $150, Toys-R-Us 25%, and an 25% off coupons. The Toys-R-Us coupon is going to some much needed Nintento Wii accessories and games; the Best Buy is going to install my Delphi XM Radio and purchase the Canon SD800 IS, and shhhh – but I sold the one on eBay for $70!

But, this year ended a little differently. On a special day, the Delonghi Caffe Nero coffee maker was available and I was taking a quick break from work over lunch. I said what the heck – let’s see if you can win something. The price on the coffee / cappuccino maker though the wishlist was “only” $175 with a retail price of $450. What a deal, right? Forget the fact that I already have 2 coffee makers, and a cappuccino maker. So, without thinking, I see if I can get it.

Then, what do you know – an absolute surprise – I won the coffee maker! So, it gets dropped into my “shopping cart” and I quickly think – do I really need this? I place a call for Ashley, and she being just as astonished as I am – says – go for it, we have never won anything. So, I check out and purchase the coffee maker.

Fast forward today. Guess what? I have this box, sitting up in our spare room, still packed in the original box. It has been collecting dust in the room for the last four weeks. Now I have to decide what to do with this impulse buy. Either I can just bite the bullet and put something on the counter I do not need, or I could try and eBay it. My idea is to eBay it, but looking at what recent auctions have ended at – I would be lucky to break even. What a predicament!

At least if I decide to break it out of the box, I can tell you all how well it works here!