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LEGO VIP Brick Friday… on Saturday?

(Written by Sarah)

A couple of weeks before Thanksgiving, some LEGO VIP members got an invitation in the mail to enjoy the LEGO Brick Friday deals a week ahead of time. I was one of those lucky members and it was wonderful to get an invitation. It felt great to be appreciated as a valued customer and I began to wonder if there was going to be a special surprise.

The event having come and gone, I’ll tell you that my feelings are mixed. On the whole, I am happy to have been able to go. I would definitely go again next year if invited, but I won’t be as excited about it. Here’s a run down of some of the good things about the event and some things that I was disappointed about.

On the brighter side, it was very nice to be recognized as a valued customer. LEGO is really trying to ramp up the LEGO VIP program and I think this is a great step in the right direction.

It was definitely more convenient to go on Saturday morning instead of Thursday at midnight. Now I could enjoy my Thanksgiving without having to stay up to midnight, wait in the cold and rush to get into the LEGO store.

While I was hoping for a great big surprise, I had to settle for an extra holiday pick-a-brick box that I got to fill up right then and there. That was a nice little surprise. Thankfully, there were some new pieces in. Otherwise, I might have been more disappointed.

Last but not least on the positive side, I got to socialize with other fans. I already knew a few people that were invited because they belong to my local LEGO club, but I got to meet a few new people while waiting in line. And hopefully, they’ll join us for our next club meeting. 

On the disappointing side, for being a valued LEGO VIP customer, I was hoping for a better discount. Only one person got 20% off; everyone else got 10%. It would have been great if they had done something like a flat 20% off to everyone or a specific set of scratchers that had a higher percentage rather than getting scratchers pulled from Brick Friday’s batch. Now, as it stands, those who went on Brick Friday had a better chance at the higher percentages since we used up about 40 of the 10% offs.

Here’s something that LEGO needs to know – one hour was not enough time. I remember spending almost two and half hours last year. For this special LEGO VIP event, we had only an hour to shop and buy. Thankfully, the store manager said that as long as we were in line by the end of the hour, we could still make our purchases.

This next one is something that probably didn’t happen in all LEGO stores. I wasn’t expecting there to be grab-bags so those were gone in an instant. I literally walked right when I should have walked left. And in the time it took me to get over there, they were all gone. My fault really, but it was still a disappointment.

One last thing that bothered me is that there weren’t many sets on clearance. Last year, there were a lot more. This isn’t really big in the whole scheme of things, but it made me feel like I wasn’t getting a very good deal. And isn’t that what Black Friday is all about? Getting a good deal?

All in all, I’m sure it was a success for LEGO. There were certainly people going crazy on buying even though they only had 10% off. Just goes to show there are still a lot of shoppers who don’t care about getting the best price. As for me, I bought some because I wanted another #10193 LEGO Medieval Market Village for parts and that second bonus holiday set.

My advice to fans that want to get invited next year – give LEGO feedback! For this year’s event, the 25 LEGO VIP members chosen for their local store was based on engagement and purchases since joining the LEGO VIP program and being part of the top 5% of LEGO VIPs globally. LEGO may change this if they do the early Brick Friday next year. Just in case they keep it the same, my advice is to email or call LEGO. Let them know what you like, what you don’t like. Feedback equates to getting things more the way you want it and maybe, just maybe, you’ll be rewarded for it.

Now I’d like to know who else got an invite and what you thought of the event. Please post in the comment section below, talking about your experiences at your local store. Did you like or not? Was it exciting or disappointing? Let us know, and don’t forget to let LEGO know! 😉

{ 12 comments… add one }
  • FrenchToast November 30, 2011, 9:06 PM

    This is interesting! I never heard of this program! Are they are all lego stores?

    • Sarah December 1, 2011, 12:04 AM

      It was new this year. They’ve never done it before. As far as I know, it happened at all LEGO stores, but I don’t know that for sure. I do hope they’ll do it again next year.

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

      • GalexyCommander December 1, 2011, 4:22 AM

        Wow, I wonder what you have to spend to be in the top 5%
        I probably spend some where between $5k-$10k a year on LEGO and I didn’t receive an invite. Of the total amount I spend per year, I’d say that approx. $2k is purchased directly from the Lego store or Shop@Home. So, I guess there must be other factors besides what you spend per year?

        I typically wait until Shop@Home has deals with free shipping. I find that the LEGO store isn’t normally where I find my best deals, anyway. Amazon usually has pretty good discounts on a regular basis that will net you more than 10% savings. Even ToysRUs BOGO can typically be a better deal. And, bargains can be had on eBay, as well, if you’re patient enough.

        In my opinion, I feel that the best gift a LEGO fan could ask for is saving money, since it’s a pretty expensive hobby to begin with.

        • Sarah December 2, 2011, 1:22 AM

          The other component to getting an invite was a person’s communication and interaction with LEGO. I email LEGO a lot! The other person I knew who got an invite calls LEGO a lot. Another friend spends a lot, like you, but doesn’t contact LEGO so he didn’t get an invite.

          That’s why I recommend contacting LEGO when you do or don’t like something. They need that feedback and it may garner you something in the future.

          I usually buy the exclusive stuff at LEGO and look for deals at TRU, Amazon and Ebay on non-exclusive sets. But if there are no good deals and I really want something, I buy it from LEGO because I like their rewards program. It’s solid. Much better than TRU’s.

          I completely agree with you that the best gift is saving money. 🙂

          Thanks for reading and commenting!

  • admin December 1, 2011, 11:27 AM

    UPDATE: Just to proove that Sarah is right and LEGO “is” listening, I just got the following email from LEGO’s Marketing Manager:

    “Dear BrickBlogger,

    I’d just like to take a moment to thank you for the wonderful write-up of the VIP Event. This type of experience was brand new for us, so going into it we knew there would be a lot of learning after the fact. Feedback like yours is exactly the kind of thing that not only sits on my desk but also what I send around to my team for future improvement. I appreciate the compliments and internalize the improvement points, which are extremely reasonable and practical recommendations.

    We deeply appreciate your business, your support and for helping us to continually improve our experiences.”

    • Sarah December 2, 2011, 1:23 AM

      That is so awesome!! I am so happy to hear that LEGO reads this blog and listens to our feedback! 😀

      Thanks so much for sharing the email!

  • Nick Nox December 2, 2011, 10:39 AM

    I would welcome LEGO listening in on this site. Especially as not all serious lego buyers/builders go to the LEGO site itself or leave comments there. I personally find the LEGO site slow compared to other sites and so dont go there much. Brickblogger site is much more fun. Its really easy to navigate and to leave comments. You guys should be congratulated on such a wonderful site 🙂 I know I visit it often 🙂

    • admin December 2, 2011, 11:58 AM

      Thanks, Nick! Maybe we should start a “Dear LEGO….” section! What do you think? 😉

  • Nick Nox December 2, 2011, 12:07 PM

    I’m all for that 😉 Or maybe a poll box where readers can vote from different options what they’d like to see more off! – Lego by vote lol 😀

    • admin December 2, 2011, 12:12 PM

      Nick, good ideas! There are actually some occasional surveys done by LEGO like that. Like right now there is a place where you can vote for new architecture sets (I will probably write about this next week). But we can do our own surveys as well. I will think about this. 😉

      • Sarah December 3, 2011, 10:31 AM

        I write so many emails to LEGO that I can start writing blog version of the emails. I’d certainly be interested to see if anyone else agrees with my opinions and if LEGO is reading this blog, I may get better responses than customer service.

        Not that all the email responses are bad. As a matter of fact, I’ve gotten some very enthusiastic responses. But for every one of those I’ve gotten two general template responses.

        • admin December 3, 2011, 12:13 PM

          Sarah, that may not be a bad idea! Writing your opinions on a blog is more public, so yeah, you may get a better response! 😉

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