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Organizing Coupons

    There are a couple of ways to manage coupons on your palm.  It depends on what works best for you.  A simple and effective way is to create a category in the memo pad called "coupons" and create a new memo for each category.  Then simply add your coupons under the appropriate memo title.  In other words, create a memo called "Baby Items" in the 'coupon' category and make a list - Your memo should look like this:

Baby Items
Pampers Diaper Wipes, $.50, 12/31/99
Huggies Diapers, $1.50, 1/15/00

    If you are interested in keeping your coupon list on the palm, you probably already have them in a database, spreadsheet, or in the popular Cash-In program.  If that is the case, follow the same steps and just copy and paste your data into the memos.

Now you can use your palm's 'find' function to search for items like 'diapers' or brands like 'Pampers'.  A lot easier than digging in a large coupon box.

    If your coupon data is in the thousands, like mine, there is another way to organize them on your palm, but it isn't free.  There is a palm database application called 'Handbase' ($20 shareware) that will let you import your data into it.   Then you can sort by category, exp. date, etc.  Try it out and see if it will fit your needs.

Organizing Forms

    Again I have two methods of keeping track of forms.  An easy way is to set up a memo category called forms.  Create a new memo for each month like this and then add the forms for that month, their expiration, and how many you have on hand like this:

December 2000
Pillsbury, 12/15/00, 6
Kool-Aid, 12/31/00, 4

Another method is to use the to-do list.  I created a category called 'refunds' and wrote each form in the to-do list and assigned the expiration date as the 'due date'.  You can also set the 'due date' for a couple weeks ahead of the refund if you want an early reminder.  If the form has no exp. date, then assign it 'no date'.  Now when you sort the list by 'due date/priority' you can see quickly what you need to work on.  Don't forget to prioritize refunds - I always give cash refunds a 1, and money+ offers a 5, etc.  See the tips & tricks section for info on putting this data into an email or posting to a web page.

Organizing A Wishlist

    The memopad method is the simplest way.  Just create an entry called 'wishlist' and make your list.  I have also found Handyshopper does an excellent job, too.  I created a database in handyshopper (version2) called wishlist.  I used the categories to sort items like 'freeride', etc.  Then I added my items - Doughboy Points, Kool-Aid Points, Duracell UPC, Oreo UPC, etc.  Use the quantity field to record how many you have on hand at the moment.  I keep my wishlist UPCs in a separate container from my other qualifiers because I know they will be used quickly.  This way, handyshopper tells me how many I have so I know what I want to trade or redeem without digging through a big pile.  Also, if there is an exp. date for the qualifiers, then be sure to insert it in the date field as a reminder.  When you are ready to post them to an email or web site for trading, use handyshopper's export feature (look under the menu items) and export them to the memopad.  From there you can hotsync and then copy them from the palm desktop memo and paste into another document.

Organizing Refund Logs

    I have tried 3 methods for this and all three worked well, it's just a matter of preference.  You could keep them listed chronologically in the memo pad - that's an easy one.  Another method is to use Handyshopper.  Just write them down as needed items, and check them off when they are completed.  Use the date field to keep track of when you mailed the offer and add any additional info (what was traded/mailed, etc.) in the date field.  Use the categories to divide your list up (trades, cash refunds, freeride points, premiums, etc.)  If the palm's limit of 15 categories is a problem, then make categories by using the 'stores' field. 
    If you know your way around database apps like Access, then you might want to try HandBase.  I prefer to use it because I can set up custom filters and manipulate my data in various ways.  I bought this app for $20 and it was worth it to me because I manage databases for local companies part-time.  If you'd rather not spend the extra cash, then go with Handyshopper - it's free.

If you have any other ideas or suggestions, please e-mail me.  I would love to hear them!

 

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Last Updated: 10/14/01
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