Richly Deserved Rewards

Rick Granick

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Forum Donor
Resource Provider
Jun 30, 1999
Cincinnati, OH
I just finished sending in my submission of recent purchases for the Nielsen Rewards Program. All you do is keep track of your Nielsen purchases and send in copies of the receipts along with a form to get rebates of 50 cents per chop (75 cents each after the first 250). What a gold mine, and it's so easy!

Let's see...
25.50..........= 51 chops @ .50
< 1.63>........Kinko's copies
< .74>..........Postage
23.13............hmm, so far so good...

<25.00>........Value of time spent marking invoices, finding and copying, filling out and mailing (approx. 30 min.)

Hey, wait a minute. My point is: Why require the invoice copies along with the entry cards? Why not just submit a list of the dates, invoice numbers, and total numbers of chops. They could reserve the right to see copies as a deterrent to "exaggeration of purchase activity". Currently, it's a "guilty until proven innocent" system that eats up valuable time that could otherwise be spent hanging out on the Grumble.
:cool: Rick
I have a similar opinion of their foam core rebate program. I sent a letter last year complaining, but I am sure it was ignored. Seems to me these programs are almost counter productive. They almost make me angry at the company. There HAS to be a better way!
Sounds like a pet peeve.

...and the boxes of foam core that we get from our supplier don't have UPC stickers on. "No problem", they say,"just give us a call and we'll mail you one." What a pain. I started saving the stickers for spite, I think. Going to make them pay up this year.
Let's see here...

you do a little work (bookeeping that you are doing anyway, plus make a photocopy of an invoice) and Nielsen Bainbridge gives you money back for a product that you are buying anyway....

And you complain about it!!!!!!!

Come on people, this increases your profit margin and you complain. If all of the major vendors in the industry gave a rebate and refused to sell to a big box and did not sell to the public on a website, many of you would still find something to complain about.

I have been on this forum for a couple years now either "lurking" or posting and there are WAY TO MANY COMPLAINTS (Yes I know that is in CAPS). I realize this is the Grumble but you are complainign that some vendor makes you do a little paper work to get MONEY BACK.

My complaint is that more vendors do not do this, if I can reduce my costs by a couple percentage points with vendors that I am already buying from, I will make a photocopy, pay postage and stay up for an extra half hour at night, this is common sense people!!!

In another recent thread Bob Carter, a wel respected person in the industry says....

"I am asked every so often why framers tend to be such lousy businesspeople.

My short answer is they don't have the analytical skills necessary to make great decisions.

It's not because they aren't smart enough (many are), it's that they haven't been taught. I'm sure a lot couldn't care less. Hey, no problem. Every one that opens a business can operate it any way they wish.

But, clearly many feel they don't need these skills and the market punishes severly those that ignore the rules of the marketplace."

A rebate is a tool that helps a retailer in the marketplace, sure if you decide to file on a weekly or monthly basis, it may not be worth your time. Both the Foamboard and Metal Rebate programs are something that you can file on a one time a year basis to make it well worth you time, yet many people think that doing the paperwork for a rebate is not worth the time and should bash the vendor for making you do the work.

No, I did not have a bad day, yes I am on my soapbox, and yes I am sick of peole complaining about stupid things that could make them money if they just thought about it before complaning.
My foam board/beveled accents rebate check arrived last week - $490.00. Not bad, but down from over $700 the prior year.

Sure seems like a no brainer to me, just copy the invoices as they arrive, staple the bar code to the invoice and save 'em up until the promo ends.
Bob, I am sorry to quote you without your prior permission or knowledge but I am sure that you can understand how it applies to this conversation.

My apologies.
Tim-No problem. Like Rob, I do exactly the same thing. I put the stapled bar code with the copy in an envelope and once a year mail that bad boy in and wait for the check so I can give it to my wife (Talk about about a lot of work for no reward)

I wish it were simpler also, but I do buy from several sources and it is the easiest way I can come up with.

I do thank Nielsen for the check everytime I get it by going to a Baseball game with my rep, Glen Grana.

I also remember the point program they had a few years back. Remember that one? They had the gift catalog and you sent in invoices and redeemed prizes for the points. I got a TV and a fax from that one. Now, that was a difficult program.

But, all in all, it's free goodies and I love Rewards Programs.

I have to thank my good friend, Rob, for making me a believer. I am still behind his success rate on goodies, but I am catching up
Kind of the same thing here Bob, I get the check and tell my wife that we are going out that Ruth Chris here but I wish there was after all that you have said about them.

The rewards program was great but if you do not need a FAX or TV who cares? CASH IS KING, a rebate is a rebate, you can use it to pay a bill or take the wife out and paint the town red. Instant gratification, no waiting for someone to FAX you or your favorite program to come on TV.

To all vendors out there...Give me discounts or rebates, preferably discounts and rebates!!!!!

p.s. I will make photocopies and send UPC codes. I do not care as long as you give me money back!!!!
Come on, it is the Grumble, for goodness sake. I don't see anything wrong with making a little noise. How else do things get changed? If enough people voice an opinion what is the worst that could happen? Maybe Neilsen doesn't know how inconvenient their program is.....maybe they will read this and reevaluate their plan? The point of the rebate is to encourage sales so I would imagine making it easier would encourage people to sell more of their product.....sounds like win/win to me.

If their manufacturer rebate is handled in house they could change it but usually they are contracted by rebate clearing houses who do have very strict rules to follow because their object is to give as little possible back. I knew someone who worked for one of those rebate companies, he said he had a quota he needed to decline the time he said only 30% of rebates were ever paid out. Mainly because people are lazy and forget to send them in at all, but a good percentage were declined due to a technicality. So, you probably are required to follow the plan to the letter.

I had forgotten about the Neilsen rebate program, I fall into the 70% who don't even bother to send them in......
I am opposed to rebates. They just drive me crazy. Instead of rebating, why not just lower the price? Do you buy Neilsen instead of Designer because you get 50 cents back? It seems like they make work for us and for them. It just seems wrong.
You might want to see how a distributor can handle these programmes as a selling tool.

We see these programmes as a way to offer a unique service to our customers. We decided to do all the customers paperwork for them.

As each order is pulled the tags on the boxes are peeled off, put on our shipping copy and slipped into a file folder in shipping. An invoice copy is matched on the invoice run and we prepare the documents to send to the supplier at the end of the promotion period. The customers love it when we drop by with the cheque as most have forgotten they even signed on for the programme. We are now rolling into our second year with this after few hassles or problems the first year. It is a no brainer for us and the paper work is minimal.

Mainly because people are lazy and forget to send them in at all,
Kathy, you hit the nail on the head there. People are lazy and love to complain. Rebates are a program to reward customers. If a customer is too lazy or thinks that making a copy of an invoice is too much work then they have no right to complain or bad mouth the vendor.
I'm not begrudging the rebate. I'm simply saying that the procedures can be made easier and less time-consuming. As Kathy and others have pointed out, the reason for rebates vs. price-lowering is that the payout percentage is lower for the company for the reasons mentioned. When I send them in I follow every detail of the rules, right down to the capitalization and punctuation of the address. You never know what will disqualify a rebate.
Again, I'm grateful to Nielsen for offering the rebate, and yes I do send for it. Plus, I use a payment system that allows me to write the fewest number of checks while getting all my discounts. My wish for a simpler compliance routine on the rebate is in keeping with this spirit of efficiency and sensible business practices.
:cool: Rick
Rebates are a gimmick, just like coupons and frequent buyer cards. They force consumers to jump through these little hoops or pay more than we would if no such program existed. It's annoying.
These programs are designed to benefit the vendor. Why else would they do them?

Sure, lowering the price would be easier for us. Who wouldn't want a lower price? But what benefit does that provide the person paying the tariff-the vendor.

These "gimmicks" are designed to engender loyalty. Lowering the price of foam by $4 won't make you necessarily any more loyal to this brand, will it?

Several of you have mentioned that you have a Frequent Framer's Program. Wouldn't it be easier for the consumer if you just dropped your prices? But, would that really be to your benefit.

You shoud reward your best customers-not everyone that walks in the door.

These are voluntary programs.

I think Alan has taken it a step further by offering a great service to his clientele. It would sure make me consider using him as a vendor. tremendous customer service.

But, if we took this discussion to the extreme,wouldn't it be easier for his clients if he just lowered the price $4 and kept the rebate? Sure. But it defeats the purpose of the program. He, wonderfully, has figured how to make this work to his advantage.

It's called good business

Good business and taking advantage of these premiums are similar. If you put a little effort into both of them, the rewards can be significant