It started out innocently enough. I was just an observer from afar. I can easily remember the beginning, when things were starting out and while there were some limitations, the interest was still there. Slowly, I tested the waters. I tried something new here and there. Flirting. Courting. Then things blossomed and I decided to take a leap of faith and make the investment in this relationship. I put in my time, did my research, paid my dues and saw wonderful things in exchange. But that's when things turned. That's when it got creepy. There were and still are multiple emails a day...I'm not good when things get clingy. Sure I could just delete them, junk them, block them and so on, but I'm a glutton for punishment and I'm curious about what goes on. Even though I'm toyed with, tempted with one enticing offer after another, I still stick around.
Is this an excerpt from a cheesy. Harlequin romance novel? No, there would be a lot more heaving bosoms and heavy sighs. This is basically what's going on with me and E.L.F Cosmetics or Eyes Lips Face Cosmetics.
I can remember back when they first appeared on the scene. Everything was $1. The range was nice, but somewhat limited. They have expanded so much and their sales are so good that I finally decided to place an order. Well, before I even got the order, I started getting "We Miss You" emails from them. What? You miss me? I didn't go anywhere! I haven't even had the chance to try out what I ordered! It's only been 12 hours! I know you've got it bad, but this is ridiculous! What Pandora's box did I open!!??
I jest, but it really is a poor marketing tactic. It's clingy, almost spammy. What frustrates me the most is that I get multiple coupon codes a day. Almost every one of them is GREAT, but there's always a catch. The coupon is only good on brushes or holiday stuff or their Studio line. I got one coupon that was for a discount on all holiday items including their new bath stuff! This would be the same bath stuff that isn't even on their site yet!! So, it makes that 48-hour coupon pretty useless if you are hoping to buy bath stuff. And nothing makes me angrier than shelling out my hard-earned money, only to get a better coupon emailed to me a few hours later!
But like any subway station around, just hang out for a little bit and another train (or in this case, coupon) will come along.
The MOST misleading one I've seen yet arrived in my inbox today. On the surface it looks great!
What was even better is that when I clicked the link, I was lucky enough to be "chosen" to have a whopping 50% off! Holy moly! That's not even shown as an option in the email!! Sign me up and fill my cart, I'm all over this! Well, it sounds too good to be true, so guess what? It is. If you look at the photo above, read #3 int he fine print. "Your personal secret discount will be applied to the first fifteen dollars in product and deducted from the total."
Wow, a whole $7.50 off is going to be the maximum you're going to get. That's not great at all. That's only slightly better than free shipping. While it's totally legal because of the fine print (which is much smaller in the email, I enlarged it for this blog), that doesn't make it any less tricky and deceitful. And that angers me. I can freely admit that I did not read the fine print at first. I went and looked at my cart (which keeps a standing list of things I am considering buying in it) and only saw the $7.50 deducted, I knew I was dealing with shenanigans.
When I find that I'm dealing with shenanigans, I feel like I have a responsibility to inform others. While I like E.L.F. just fine and would LIKE to order more from them, I really hesitate because of their business practices. They are counting on confusing customers by inundating them with tons of offers in hopes that the customer will not be informed and just go along with one because it says "50% off" when in reality it's only $7.50. Do they really think a customer is going to buy from them in 3 or 4 separate orders because the coupon codes are for different things? Who wants to pay shipping 3 or 4 times over? The more I think about this, the angrier it makes me.
What do you think?