Earlier this spring, patrons of Rita’s Water Ice could receive a regular sized serving of any flavor for free. This promotion lined up customers, including myself, around the block, all waiting for their own tiny portion. Trekking the seventy streets and multiple avenues to the corner of 92nd and Broadway is a process, but it felt completely worth it.
At first glance, such promotions appear to cost companies money, but they actually build a stronger customer relationship than any single advertisement on a billboard or commercial possibly could. Giveaways are an inexpensive way for companies to maximize marketing dollars.
As it happens, the worst times economically are when free offers reach the peak of their popularity. Perhaps that is why 600,000 Americans participated in free food promotions and contests each year over the last few years.
Some participants win free meals, coupons, or pledge future loyalty through the use of reward cards. Are you looking for a place to grab a quick bite during lunch break for the rest of the year? Well, Starbucks’ free pastry day, Rita’s free Water Ice day, and Baskin Robbins’ upcoming thirty-one cent scoop day on April 28th are several opportunities for LIM College students to grab free food during lunch hour if they are not bothered by waiting in line.