Monday, September 11, 2017

Pop Tarts And Hurricanes

When Hurricane Frances was about to hit Florida, Walmart jumped into action. They had mountains of data on their customers and on every aspect of their lives. With thousands in jeopardy, Walmart knew they had a responsibility: They had to figure out how to make a quick buck from it.

They looked through their data to predict customer behavior and discovered that their customers have a strange reaction when a storm is about to hit. Instead of water or flashlights, the biggest things people stocked up on were beer and strawberry-flavored Pop-Tarts.

The difference is huge. Before a hurricane hits, beer becomes Walmart’s top-selling item and Pop-Tart sales go up 700 percent. People grab Pop-Tarts and beer before a disaster so often that Walmart has actually started sending out extra truckloads of stale breakfast pastries to make up for the demand.

This isn’t a natural human instinct. It only happens to US Walmart customers. When Costco did a study on their customers in Hawaii, they found that beer sales actually plummeted.[1] At Costco, people stocked up on water and batteries instead to make sure that their families could survive.

But not at Walmart. When death stares them in the face, Walmart customers grab a cold Pop-Tart and lukewarm beer, sit back, cross their fingers for luck, and enjoy the ride.


j-swin said...

Again, the fucking hill jacks never fail to astonish.

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

But I too love the Pop Tart so I can't be all that judgemental.

DrGoat said...

Like I said before, I think they are a different species.
Cal, you can love something and be judgemental about it. Take any married couple for instance.

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

Thank you for that reminder. I can be more judgemental if I really try.