Sunday, March 13, 2011

The truth in Challenger's ad

Like many of us, Anne Wong believes in what is published in advertisements in the mainstream newspapers.

However, after her experience last week, she is now very sceptical. Here's her story:

"Last Thursday, March 10, both the Straits Times and TODAY featured a supplement on the IT SHOW.

"Within the body of the newspapers Challenger ran a prominent advertisement(pictured), touting that “We Match Show Pricing”.

"As I was toying with the idea of a new all-in-one from Canon, I visited the IT SHOW website (very disappointing) and the Canon website.

"To my delight, Canon showed what they were offering on various products at the show and I printed out the page in which I was interested.

"I took myself down to Funan Centre and approached the staff in the printer department who silently applied himself to a computer terminal. After a few minutes he turned to me and said that he could not match the Canon deal because it meant selling the printer below Challenger’s cost.

"I mentioned the big headline of their advertisement and another customer who was nearby remarked, “that’s misrepresentation”!

"On returning home I scoured our newspapers for the Challenger advertisement and sure enough, in small print there was a disclaimer under item 3: “ Challenger reserves the right to reject any price matching request at its discretion”.

"What a waste of my time and their money to trick people into their stores! Why even bother with such a ‘come on’ which is bound to turn customers off?

"How would a customer know whether the salesman’s story about the company’s cost is true or false? It could just be a ploy, like their advertisement.

"Besides, why should it be the customer’s responsibility to ensure that Challenger sells above cost?

"Did Challenger and its ad. agency think we Singaporeans have not heard of ‘bait and switch’?

"This can only happen where consumers have little protection. It would not happen in the USA where customers bring products back when a sale starts, return the products and buy them back again at the sale price.

"And often it even can be done in one seamless transaction at the register!

"I decided to stick with what we have – if it ain’t broke, no need to buy a new one.

"We’ll only be buying our next printer from Challenger IF they can match their competitors’ deals; why pay more? "

Wonder what the advertising regulatory body has to say!!

1 comment:

  1. Appalled to have read this, I would have been huffing mad too, especially after making a trip all the way down to Challenger. Don't advertise if you cant live up to the challenge. (pun intended)