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One of the things I enjoy about my birthday is the barrage of special gifts from my favorite retailers and restaurants. I appreciate them all, because they’re from establishments where I already shop and eat. And I’m sure the marketers at the various companies appreciate my birthday, simply because it’s an opportunity for them to remind me that they exist. If you collect birthdates in your demographic information and you’re not using them, you’re throwing away a key opportunity to reach out to your customers. Afterall, who turns down, or leaves a birthday card unopned. For inspiration here’s a list (with commentary) of this year’s bounty:

  • Sephora – free mini makeup kit for eyes (what girl doesn’t love free make-up?)
  • ING Direct – 15% off their on-line store (if you want me to sport your logo gear you should be paying me not the other way around, even with a discount)
  • Boloco – free burrito on my Boloco card (all I can say is YUM)
  • Starbucks – free coffee drink (this would have been even better if Starbucks didn’t lead with the line “We noticed your star isn’t shining as bright” really? are you trying to tell me I’m getting old Starbucks?)
  • Banana Republic – $15 gift card (someone is getting a new outfit for their birthday)
  • Sel de la Terre – 20% off any purchase in February (this is one of my favorite restaurants)
  • Craigie On Main – Free signature cocktail and free surprise gift on my birthday (great way to try to get me to the restuarant for my birthday, but I’m off to Coppa instead, too bad this isn’t valid for my entire birthday month)

image credit: Flickr user Sweet! Cupcakes and Treats (Just Cupcakes!) Wow, that’s a long username…

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