The Nielsen Company—the people responsible for getting good TV shows canceled—just released a survey of coupon users. It turns out affluent consumers (those who make $70k or more annually) use coupons more frequently than the average U.S. household. Those who use coupons the least are from either low-income, one-member, male-only, African-American, or Hispanic households.
Also, heavy coupon users tend to live in affluent suburban areas or in “comfortable country areas” on the fringes of large cities.
Coupon use on the whole has increased after our economy went to hell, but the Nielsen study seems to show that affluent, suburban (or “country spread”) customers are the ones most smitten with coupons.
So do low coupon users not use them because they don’t offer savings on the sorts of products they buy? Or is it just harder to find the coupons, make time to sort them, and then find a store to accept them? Or is coupon clipping a cultural activity that poorer homes don’t participate in? We have no idea, but we suspect the first reason, partly because Nielsen points out that the survey shows that there are “real benefits to companies deploying coupons in their marketing mix”—meaning it’s a great marketing tool to drive more purchases, whether it creates real savings or not in your household.
“Nielsen: Affluent Consumers More Likely to Be Heavy Coupon Users” [Reuters]