Tag Archives: Marketing

UAE Marketing Misses


Language is a funny thing.  Language interpretation is even funnier sometimes.  In my shopping here (which happens WAY too much) I’ve found some advertising copy that just misses the mark for me, or that truly made me laugh out loud…. So you gotta know, right?  Read on…..

A local luxury hotel chain’s loyalty program (Rotanarewards.com) advertises “When exclusive is not so much a privilege, but a lifestyle.”  So, wait.  Does that mean they’re too exclusive for me?  If my lifestyle is already exclusive, does this add privilege?  Or perhaps I’m so privileged that this exclusivity should be my lifestyle…..  I’m not certain exactly who this one is aimed at, but I’m guessing it’s not me or the other 85% of the population here made up of expats ….. not sure.

Be-dazzled duster and dustpan – I have no explanation.  Does it make your cleaning cleaner, maybe?  Things sparkle more?  Try for the life of me,  I have no clue about this one.

bedazzled2 bedazzled

And soap with a “killer price” – literally?

grocery 004

This was a giggle too, who names a sports drink “sweat”??  Apparently, this company does…..

sweat drink

I didn’t get a photo of this one, but one of the handbills on a light post downtown advertised “House Shifting”.  My first thought was that perhaps it was something to do with house-movers, like I’ve seen in the states…. They literally move houses from one location to another.  But, one of our neighbors here has lived in Dubai since 1998, and talked about “shifting” from one neighborhood to this so that’s how I learned that it meant moving!

And, in the toilet paper department….  The always-popular “puppies on a roll”.  *shrug*  I honestly got nothing on this one, can’t for the life of me fit anything into that line.

puppies on a roll

Or, how about one enriched with shea butter.  I mean, what the heck use is that??  Not sure I actually *want* my toilet paper enriched with anything, thank you…..

toilet paper shea butter

Or this one, advertised by a sultry-speaking woman….”Andrex classic white.  Soft, Strong, and Veeerrrry Long”.  <snort>

soft strong and very long

Now, I’ve never personally had one….. but this was certainly eye-opening….. a bust-firming massage???  Holy cow….


Or the popular tapioca-pearled drinks called “Boba”….. this one has an interesting attribute…. It’s “fatally fruity!”

boba 003 boba 007

While we’re talking about drinks…. Check out these… um….. well, if you can’t read the label, turn it over!


Cute little drawstring teabags – took me a bit to figure these out once I got them home….


And here, the Thai Dried Plasaitan.  Otherwise known as “deaddriedfishinabag”.  :::shudder:::


Hhmmmm…. Something from cows that you can turn into a mexican-looking flan with a perfect crunch topping.  *snap*  Got it.  Sweetened condensed milk…. There it is, in tiny little letters.  But isn’t the packaging brilliant?  No more scraping that thick stuff out of a can that’s got sharp edges and you never get the last bit out…..

IMG_1884 IMG_1883

Just squeeze it up and done.  Less space in the landfills, less space on the shelves of both the grocery and your pantry.  Lighter weight too.  Brilliant idea!  Here’s another along the same line… I love these bags!  “Honey, run to the cold store and get me a bag of spaghetti sauce!”.

Taste of Dubai 002 Taste of Dubai 004

How about some pocket tissues?  Cute little dotted bag, would be easy to slip into my handbag…… wait, WHAT does it say??

marketing 007

“The plant has strong vitality.  It grows into beautiful flowers and fruits and moisten our lives”.   Okay…..

Now this is cute…. Took me a minute or two….


Get it?  “jiggle it loose”??  It’s a spray lubricant!  Kinda like WD-40, I’m guessing.

One of my favorites so far that even made TBG laugh outright was this one…. A local propane/LP gas delivery company has its company name emblazoned on the delivery trucks…. And it truly tickled my American sense of humor.

alboom alboom2

Get it?  “Al Boom”??  “Boom” like an explosion…. And it’s a propane truck?  I think the cartoon character Hank Hill of the FX TV show “King of the Hill” would appreciate that humor, don’t you??

Anyhow, just a few of the things that have caught my eye that didn’t translate as expected.

Unsubscribing from email rant……


Folks, I get hundreds of emails daily.  This may surprise some of you, most will think “so?  I do too!”  But if most of them are promotional in nature and since I can’t take advantage of the offers, there is no need to continue receiving them.  Kind of a “don’t show me what I can’t have” sort of deal, you know?  So, I wanted to unsubscribe.  I’m gonna describe that process so far to you – so if you don’t want to hear me whine for a bit, move along.

SOME  ARE EASY      But some are insane.  Local meat shop in Dothan, Butcher’s block for example….. there’s a link to click in their email.  You click that link and it takes you to a page that requires you to decipher a million different options before you can find the one to unsubscribe.  Even then, you have to enter your email address, even though you arrived there from an email sent TO YOU FROM THEM.

Or this one, from Southern Garden Scents, a company I used to order fragrance from…….

SGS unsub

Now remember, I’ve received an advertising email from them.  I clicked on the link in the email to unsub.  THEN, I had to re-enter my email address to access my email preferences or to unsubscribe.  THEN I had to receive ANOTHER email from them with the comment that “someone” had requested I be unsubscribed.  If it was me, and I really want to unsub, click this link…. I did.  And got redirected to yet ANOTHER subscriber update page


with a “click to unsubscribe” button at the veeeeerrrry bottom.   Now, once you click that, guess what??  Southern Garden Scents and poMMo mailing management software assume that since I’ve only jumped through their hoops and confirmed three times so far that it’s still possible I might not know what I’m doing.  This is insult to injury!!


I wonder if the page owner realizes what horrible mailing list management software this is???   Icing on the cake is that after all this, I received yet ANOTHER email from Southern Garden Scents confirming that I’ve been unsubscribed.   And poMMo mailing management software – you should be ashamed!!

The total epitome of annoying unsubs, I believe, is my personal experience with a Middle Eastern Business named Namshi.  They have a website that advertises free shipping to the entire region.  I saw a blouse I loved, on sale.  When I clicked to put it in my basket, the sale price disappeared.  But I thought I was in luck, there was one of those handy little “Got Questions?” live chat tabs, so I clicked it and filled it out with my question, and sat back and awaited the answer as to why the price changed.

don't ever ever ever fill in this form on their website if you do not wish to begin innundation with marketing emails!

don’t ever ever ever fill in this form on their website if you do not wish to begin innundation with marketing emails!

And I waited and waited, and finally called to ask why, was told that someone would call me back and provide that help,  must be a mistake so sorry, no can help.  Never got a call.  What I *did* start getting was a brazillion marketing emails from Namshi – like at least 3-4 a day.  I hit the “unsubscribe” link, put my email in, and assumed it would stop.  No such luck, the email kept coming.  No way was I gonna buy from a company with sketchy business practices that doesn’t  reply to their customers.

I put in a complaint form in their “contact us” section, and was told to use the unsubscribe link in the emails.  I explained I had, to no avail.  They asked what email address I had subscribed with.  Though we’d been emailing back and forth, I provided it.  They replied that it wasn’t found in their subscription database.  I explained I hadn’t subscribed to anything, but HAD tried to ask a question using their form – that must be where they added me to their lists.  They replied they’d taken care of the matter and closed out the complaint form.

No joy, the emails kept coming.  *sigh*  So, if you’d like, just re-read the paragraph above to see exactly what happened next, with the exception of an added snippy “Each email you receive has unsub instructions at the bottom.  Please follow them.”

Well allrighty then – I copied every single message – enclosed them in a reply, and asked what I should do next to stop their marketing messages,  because surely they didn’t want to send out unsolicited, unwanted marketing emails.

Amazingly, they sent me a message about “problem resolved”.  And there it was.  Done.  Finally.  After about three phone calls and 12 emails.

And my personal favorite so far – Everyday Minerals…..amazing product, really.  Excellent mineral makeup.  But there is no “unsubscribe” link in their advertising email.  You are directed to their website to “manage your account”.   But this is the deal, you don’t *have* to have an account in order to check out, you can do so as a “guest”.  But then you’re magically subscribed to the email newsletters.  Sooooo, since I checked out as a guest, I have to FIRST create a customer account, THEN reply to the emails prompting me to confirm that I really *do* want to create this account, THEN log into this account, THEN unsubscribe from the newsletter.  Holy cow.  At this point, I decided that SURELY the companies involved had no idea how frustrating or aggravating this process is to their previous (and future!) customer s and I decided to let them know exactly what the procedure was, and how it worked.  Sent to the only email address I could find, a personal shopper named Cristy.  This is her response….

Hello Debbie,

Thank you for contacting us.  I’m sorry to hear about this.  I have forwarded your feedback over to our IT team so that they can look into this right away.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

Everyday Minerals

OK, so now I felt just a little bit bad for unloading on such a nice person.  Just a little bit.