We all love a deal, but there’s few things worse than a ‘special deal’ that isn’t a deal at all.

When I saw this Tweet from Olympic-winning triathlete Alistair Brownlee, I was excited – ‘Hey, I’m a friend of Alistair Brownlee and that’s earned me 25% off Adidas gear’.

alastair brownlee adidas tweet
It’s great marketing by delivering a real reason for following someone on social media.

And so, with the promise of 25% off thanks to my mate Al, I clicked through to the Adidas site…

You’re not special…

The only problem was that when I landed on the Adidas site, my bubble was immediately burst.


Never under-estimate your customers

It turned out that I wasn’t special at all – you could be anyone’s friend to get the same discount.

I still follow Alistair, but it’s different now.  I don’t think we’ll ever be the same after this.

And while this is tongue-in-cheek, there is a serious point for brands – never try to fool your fans and followers.

If you claim you’re offering a certain discount and it’s obvious you’re not, they’ll remember.  And next time they probably won’t bother to click at all…