Remember the free toy that came in your Cracker Jacks or Happy Meal? Such giveaways or "premiums" can be tremendously motivating.
The local blood donation collectors are offering a free cookbook if I donate blood twice this summer. I confess, the thought of a free cookbook pleases me just as much as the normal altruistic feeling of giving blood.
The Pike Pub in downtown Seattle is offer a free engraved growler (full of Pike brew, of course) if a patron signs up for their frequent visitor's club and orders one of each of the beers that Pike serves. It's been a nearly a year, and the husband is about 3/4s of the way though the 2 page list of beers.
Still, I was surprised by boldness of Zynga / 7-11's recent promotion of Mafia Wars and Farmville freebies with Slurpees.
Lastly, there's the recent battle of Carvel Ice Cream vs. Mama Lohan.
Tags: economics marketing