“BAIT, n. A preparation that renders the hook more palatable. The best kind is beauty.” - Ambrose Bierce

Another day...another email from Neiman Marcus that makes me wonder two things...who puts together their advertising...and who their target audience is. In this instance, to announce the "Premier Handbag Event", I'm told that I get a free gift with purchase. Yes, that's right...if I make my credit card tingle and wince by buying a $2,000 Yves Saint Laurent Besace or a $2,400 zebra stripe woven hobo from Bottega Veneta I get...a handbag hook.

That's it? A handbag hook? Possibly the most useless invention ever to burst into existence (and I'm saying this from the standpoint of a very paranoid handbag user)...I understand not wanting to put your bag on the floor...or on the back of your chair...but I don't see how hanging it from the table is any better (as that particular location has an increased risk of drips and spills as the waiter delivers your order). And the real kicker with all of this? The obligatory caution that there's only "one gift per order, per customer"...so if you were going to buy both bags in the vague hope of being given two handbag hooks in return for your $4,000 put that thought right out of your mind.

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Post a Comment 8 comments:

  • Sal said...
    9:24 AM
    Wow. Apparently all this economic downturn has made those bastards GREEDY with their handbag hooks. And I agree, what a crap invention: My bag would get more abuse on that hook than sitting on the dirty floor.
  • Tess said...
    10:35 AM
    Well I desagree. Unless you like putting your handbag of the floor and grow families of germs in your handbag.
    And actually when you own a $2000 handbag,you don t want to put it on the floor because it is fragile.And how practical to have it on your knees when you eat at the restaurant.
    I think the handbag hook it is a really cool invention!
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    11:05 AM
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    Once you've posted the link, let me know the URL of the page that it's on, and I will post it on our site.You can reply to me at izoocaro@gmail.com

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  • MR style said...
    4:00 PM
    well i thought the crisis was a joke ?
  • enc said...
    6:40 PM
    That's a laugh. NM are far, far out of touch.
  • Shops Galore! said...
    10:19 PM
    After spending 2 grand on a handbag, I would have to set it on the kitchen counter in the dark because I couldn't be able to afford to go to dinner to use the table hook or pay the electric bill! I'm all for designer handbags, but smart shoppers never pay full price. It's not that I'm cheap (OK, I am)I just want to buy MORE!
  • editor said...
    8:57 AM
    I received this same purse hook last year (media gift) and i have to say, as far as purse hooks go, this one is the best design i've ever seen - i've never owned or tried any others, but most look pretty freakin' bad. anyway, i have actually on occasion used my hook, and felt semi-foolish and semi-glad to have it.
    as far as a gift-with-purchase, it's hardly a bold font type of deal, i'll agree, but it is better than the "spend $X and get a $Y gift card" in my opinion, because those really defy logic = buy what you want, and we'll give you a reason to buy more, even if you don't want more. that is the kind of "special" that really irritates me. shouldn't these bonus offers be incidental anyway? whatever the "gift" is, it shouldn't be the motivating reason to buy a 2k bag. the bag ought to be the only reason to do that, right. so in some ways, this very small gift actually makes a lot of sense. but it shows how demanding we are now, how much we want more more more that the purchase itself is not incentive enough, and a small bonus gift is not regarded as the extra that it is. if we're going to buy a purse, then the store ought to give us a luxury suv and a year's worth of free gas with it. that seems to be what it takes these days, to get customers to appreciate what they're buying. it's not about getting the thing they want, but about getting more - more off, more extras, more stuff.
    weird.
    i hope some customers at least demand that the item they are buying to get the extra stuff is something that is of excellent quality, craftsmanship and design - those are the "extras" that i hold out for these days.
  • hebden said...
    7:36 PM
    Tess - I must be a bad bag owner...as long as the bag's leather I buy a bag to "use"...that includes putting it on the floor (which is probably why one of my Balenciagas is looking a little the worse for wear)...fabric or suede I'll be completely paranoid and hold in my lap.

    editor - I agree completely...it should be about the craft and design...which is why it irks me so much when stores use this kind of naff "freebie" as some kind of incentive. If I like the bag, I'll buy the bag...I don't need/want the hook and I guess I find it kind of insulting that they assume I'll be swayed by the offer of one.

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