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August 30, 2013
Chagrin over CVS' Streaming Coupons
 
This probably belongs to our marketing colleagues, but it has PR overtones too. Those run-on coupon tapes that stream from the check-out printers at CVS drug stores have been making the drug chain look silly. And now, notes PR Newser, social media is giving CVS a headache over them. There are Twitter streams and Facebook pages knocking CVS for its gushing coupons.

Okay, the other day we saved $4 on a $20 purchase with one coupon. That's fine. But how about $2 off on any $10 Battery purchase, $2 off on any $8 Cookies, Chips, Crackers or Nuts purchase, $2 off any $10 Toothpaste, Toothbrush, Floss or Mouthwash, or $1.50 off $5 CVS Brand Razors, Shave Creams or Depilatories? You'd have to calibrate your trips to the drug store closely to capitalize on "savings" like these, and who wants to bother? The coupons just pile up, wasting paper and ink and prompting comments to the CVS clerk as she bundles them up. She smiles back.

Now PR Newser refers us to The Huffington Post noting that CVS is going to shorten the "Extra Care" (coupons) portion of its checkout tapes by 25 percent. But the item doesn't say on what basis, and CVS doesn't seem yet to know. It's pretty silly to let something that's well-intended get away from you like this. Tape and ink manufacturers, too, have a lot at stake here. 

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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