My journey is important in this experiment, however, I think it’s just as important to learn a bit about the history, theories, and other facts about coupons. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be randomly posting articles about these topics.
“To start at the very beginning. A very good place to start.” A quick history of the coupon:
Coca-Cola was the first company to use coupons as a marketing tool. In the 1890s, new owner Asa Candler had his employees handed out “complimentary tickets” for free Coca-Cola, sold then at soda fountains. Between 1894 and 1913, complimentary tickets for Coca-Cola could be found in magazines, in the mail and through company salesmen. Syrup was given to soda fountains to cover the cost of the complimentary servings. Almost 8.5 million coupons were redeemed and approximately one in nine Americans got a free Coca-Cola. These coupons are the reason Coca-Cola became so well-known and popular in the United States.
Post Cereal was the first company to offer coupons for discount prices. In 1909, C.W. Post started giving out 1 cent off coupons for his cereal brand Grape Nuts. This started a trend and when the Great Depression hit America, the coupon clipping became necessary and developed a habit in families that extended past the Depression. In the 1940’s large supermarket chains began to use coupons to increase their sales. By 1965, it was thought that more than 50% of Americans were using coupons. Fast forwarded many year to 1995, where coupons began to be available online. And the rest is history…
A Grape Nuts commercial from the 1960s I found while researching:
Sources/to read more: