On The Road with Consumer Cellular, available from www.ConsumerCellularTV.com or www.ConsumerCellular.com
In this Consumer Cellular ad, Jack and his wife Connie are on a road trip in their mobile home telling us about the benefits of Consumer Cellular.
What this ad says:
(Connie & Jack): Connie and I love having cellphones because of the freedom they give us. So why would we want to be tied down to a contract? Life’s too short! And Consumer Cellular gives us control over how and when we use them and what we pay. And compared to our old plan we’re saving a ton of money every month. (on screen “Plans start at $10 a month” is displayed)
(Announcer): Consumer Cellular is the wireless provider for people who want affordable service without the contracts. At Consumer Cellular when you choose a new phone from the latest smartphone to a super-simple one, we’ll activate it for free, a $35 value. Call or go online and shipping is also free or stop by a Sears store. Best of all you can try Consumer Cellular risk-free for 30 days and Consumer Cellular is the exclusive wireless provider for AARP members, so ask about your special discounts.
Consumer Cellular, for people who want control over their cellphone service not the other way around. Plans start at just $10 a month and we’ll activate your new phone for free, a $35 value. Shipping is also free or just pick it up at a Sears store. Start your 30 day risk free trial today. AARP members ask about your special discounts. Call Consumer Cellular at 1-800-393-4305 go to ConsumerCellularTV.com or visit a Sears store today.
Phrases or claims made and their real meanings:
- What the commercial said: Consumer Cellular is the wireless provider for people who want affordable service without the contracts. At Consumer Cellular when you choose a new phone from the latest smartphone to a super-simple one, we’ll activate it for free
- What some people might think that means: I can get a phone and have it activated, for free without a contract
- What it really means: Consumer Cellular does not have contracts and they will activate your cellphone for free. However it is important to understand that if you do not have a phone, or if you have one that is “locked” to your current wireless carrier you must purchase a phone at full retail price. Most wireless providers give a large discount on the phone in return for a long-term (usually 2 years) contract. Because Consumer Cellular does not have long term contracts, you must pay the entire price for a phone, with no discount. These prices can range from $35 for a simple “flip phone” to almost $900 for a fully-loaded iPhone.
- What the commercial said: Plans start at just $10 a month
- What some people might think that means: I can get a plan for only $10 per month
- What it really means: Consumer Cellular does offer limited cell-phone only plans starting at $10 per month. If you want to send text messages or use data (for a smartphone) you must pay more
- What the commercial said: and shipping is also free
- What some people might think that means: When I buy a phone, I will not have to pay extra for shipping
- What it actually means: According to ConsumerCellular.com website, there is no additional charge for shipping your new phone.
- What the commercial said: Consumer Cellular is the exclusive wireless provider for AARP members
- What some people might think that means: If I am an AARP member I can get additional discounts
- What it actually means: From information provided at the www.ConsumerCellular.com website, AARP members will receive a 5% discount off their monthly usage fees and charges. AARP members are also eligible for a 30% discount on select (only some/specific) phone accessories purchased via Consumer Cellular.
- What the commercial said: Start your 30 day risk free trial today
- What some people might think that means: I can try it for a month and if I don’t like it I don’t have to pay any money
- What it actually means: The first mention of the 30 days risk free trial is at 55 seconds into the 2-minute version of the commercial. It is not until the 1:23 mark, almost a full 30 seconds later, that the following extremely small fine-print is displayed:
Terms and conditions are subject to change. Risk free guarantee: If you are not satisfied within 30 days, 30 minutes of talk, 30 texts, or 30MB of data-use, whichever comes first, cancel and pay nothing. No questions asked.
What this fine print means:
This means that the guarantee is good for 30 days OR 30 minutes of talking on the phone OR 30 text messages OR 30MB of data-download. In other words, if you talk on the phone for a total of 31 minutes in the first 2 days, the guarantee is no longer valid. The Guarantee is clear that you pay nothing if you cancel before the 30 days/minutes/texts/data is used, but this applies only to the Consumer Cellular service, but it does not say that it applies to the purchase of a telephone you may have purchased when you signed up.
Virtually all of the wording used in this commercial is legit except for the wording used in the 30 day risk-free guarantee. Some people may feel that offering a “30 day risk free guarantee” while hiding important details about talk-time or text usage in the near-unreadble fine-print is very deceptive.