Savings for Dummies
Aging & Attitude
Mr. Wonderful says, “take a look at this,” and points to a Letter to the Editor in the News Journal (1/7/12).
Shrink ray strikes at grocery store
“Having just returned from the grocery store, my choices were to either cry or laugh. I chose to laugh, and share with you.
On the positive side, I had fewer bags to carry in the house, which also meant fewer items to put away-that’s a net positive result; I saved a few minutes of my precious day.
The pound used to equal 16 ounces, but my coffee “pound” is now 11 ounces. Maybe I’ll drink less coffee if there is less in my cupboard.
The “pound” of potato chips is now 10.5 ounces. I must send Frito-Lay a thank-you card. I’m sure the company had my health in mind when they cut the size of the “pound bag. Less for more almost sounds like double dipping and not in a fun way.”
Ellen Johanson, Port Orange, Fl.
Ellen, a woman after my own heart, goes on to express her frustration with shrinking size and rising prices.
Mr. Wonderful continues the dialogue, “Just what I’m talkin about, and it’s the same with BOGO (buy one get one free). That pound of coffee that isn’t 16 ounces isn’t $5.99 it’s $6.81 The cost of the free one keeps going up, see what I’m saying.”
Married forty years, it is too early to argue marketing ploys. The item price has increased, and like the shrinking size double dipping scenario you get less, but the free one is still free. Actually, it is a half price, 50% off sale, but not really, because you cannot buy only one, like a two for sale when you can.
The shopper saved,$6.81, but not in the traditional way.
Similarly, a receipt now touts customer savings, another marketing ploy appealing to a “financial dreamer” willing to pay full price ($142.24) for a sweatshirt, sweatpants and tennis shoes, and consequently happy to spend a mere $64.80, convinced of saving $77.44. Well, only if they stop by the bank and deposit $77.44 in an account.
The reality, nothing is saved. The customer simply did not spend $77.44 more for a purchase they would not have otherwise made.
Saving is no longer simple.
Jennifer Richardson of Anchor Group/Bill Grigat in Daytona Beach identifies five financial personalities. Financial Dreamer is one of them, and believes women need female guidance with money. Ms. Richardson gives a more sophisticated version than mine below, however I believe, the essence is captured.
The personalities are:
- Financial Initiator – In charge of your money and invests with success, could be a day trader.
- Financial Analyzer –Lives within budget, spends money wisely, but lacking investment confidence, calls Jennifer.
- Financial Collaborator – A spouse or significant other manages the money. They smile when informed of transactions. Jennifer advises financial independence.
- Financial Avoider – In debt, experiences anxiety buying a latte and is working with a therapist.
- Financial Dreamer – Habitually overspent, dreams about winning the lottery. Uses a credit card to pay a credit card bill. Jennifer is their 911
Saving was easy before advertising manipulated consumers to want everything they see and buy everything they want. It is possible to want something and not buy it, thinking about dust and clutter deter me.
Saving money might be real simple. Here is a suggestion; spend less than you earn and put the difference in a Cookie Jar.