Saturday, April 2, 2011
Coupon Crazy!: Part Deux
I posted Saturday about my recent conversion to couponing. Yes...yes, I've joined the cult. Just yesterday, I got a 32-load laundry detergent, two bottles of dish soap, a full-size tube of toothpaste, styling mousse, and hairspray at Walgreens. All of this stuff was name brand with a total regular retail value of over $24. My price after coupons and store rewards? $3.71! I actually MADE a dollar on the toothpaste. So yeah. I'm all in!
I first became interested in couponing a few months ago when my friend Jen posted on her blog about an amazing trip to Target. Then she followed that up with another post explaining how she managed to spend just $37 for a week's worth of groceries. She had me at "Target," but $37??? That's insane! I was hooked.
Then I started seeing things on Facebook like "Racheal L. 'Likes' Suave Beauty; Jennifer M. 'Likes' California Pizza Kitchen..." I asked my friend Racheal what was up. She told me that LOTS of companies are using Facebook as a marketing tool, and will often offer printable coupons if you "Like" their product pages. There are lots of really good coupons to be had this way, so I started "Like"-ing left and right, too!
Racheal also turned me on to Consumer Queen, a popular Okie blogger who also happens to be her neighbor. She posts loads of useful information, such as where to find those nifty Facebook coupons when they come up. She also posts matchups. Matchups are lists of store sale prices paired with available coupons you can use to obtain the best possible price. She also maintains a huge coupon database and offers links to help you find printable coupons (including organic). If you're interested and live nearby, Consumer Queen also teaches coupon classes you can attend to get you started.
Since I live halfway across the country, I searched for someone in my area offering similar information. That's how I found The Coupon Consultant. She also offers frequent coupon seminars for a small fee, and she posts store matchups for my area as well. I plan to park my butt in one of her chairs in the near future! By the way, both Consumer Queen and The Coupon Consultant are on Facebook if you'd "Like" to get in the know. And I'd be willing to bet that no matter where you are, there is probably a blogger in your area doing the same stuff. Fire up the search engine and get crackin'!
I used to think you had to be some sort of magic super genius (Or obsessed nut) to make couponing really pay off. Since I've started, though, I've noticed a surprising number of of other shoppers who are doing the same thing. We're pretty easy to spot with our binders and sale ads on double coupon day. With the economy what it is, I'm betting this is a trend that will continue to grow. The folks at TLC must think so, too: they're premiering a new show called Extreme Couponing on Wednesday at 9PM ET/PT.* The network's press page has this to say about the program:
"From seeing their shocking stockpiles of merchandise they rack up, to demonstrating their dramatic shopping skills, to witnessing how some use their amazing couponing ways to benefit local communities, EXTREME COUPONING shares the world of everyday people in pursuit of extraordinary deals."
I'm setting my DVR!
* Be sure to click that link and watch the video of the woman at the checkout. WOW!