Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Discussion With A Rite Aid Manager

I did my RA run today.  This week I was interested in the Bumble Bee tuna scenario.  I went equipped with 3 RA coupons.  Two were 3.00 off 15.00 for doing a survey, the other 2.00 off 10.00 for doing the beauty video values.  I was expecting a 5.00 up reward for buying 15.00 worth of specified items and a 1.00 up for each can of tuna.  Many customers received these at the beginning of the week.  I left with one of the 3.00 Qs and only 10 cans of tuna.  I planned on donating the second set of close to free tuna to the local food bank.

When the 1.00 ups didn't print out, I asked to speak with the manager.  The reason the ups were stopped, according to the manager, was because the manufacturer pulled the deal with RA.  I will try to believe this, although I have some doubts.  I did purchasing and contracts when I worked and never did I let a vendor out of a contract.  I will give the benefit of the doubt because this is the first time it's happened to me.

I was just OK with paying 5.00 for 10 cans of tuna.  But not elated.  I wanted the ups so I could get the second set of 10 cans of tuna.

During our discussion I disclosed some information.  I revealed that it takes us time and effort to set up our scenarios to buy products.  That we need to trust a company at their word.  If RA, I went on, began playing tricks with the up rewards, they would be put in the same category as their 2 large competitors, which would level the playing field.  This would show up in the bottom line, theirs, not ours.  We would figure things out and find stores that valued our sponsorship.

Now, to be fair, we did discuss a couple of other things.  One was the hoarding that goes on with a very few grocery hounds.  This has become a very visable habit.  RA is trying to find ways to be fair to everyone and is beginning to place limits on some items.  They have decided not to do pre orders with the thought that they are a pharmacy, not a wholesaler.  Very few of us are hoarders, but the few are spoiling it for the rest of us.  RA is aware of this new type of hoarder.  He told me of a customer who took every can of chips on the display because of the ups.  Four hundred of them! 

They would like to offer lots of deals to us, but will consider making other arrangements if the extreme hoarding gets out of hand.  They want all of us to benefit.  One of the reasons they are retracting ups is because of hoarding.  They will find a permanent solution, limits on items being one of them.

I also revealed that many of us go for the freebies because we donate them.  He was impressed to have this information. 

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