THERE'S no such thing as a free lunch, so the saying goes.
Actually there is such a thing and it's delicious.
I know this as I ate one of the 3800 burritos that new Stockland store Guzman Y Gomez gave out on Thursday.
It's fantastic to see more stores coming to the Gladstone region, and particularly cuisines that locals have been vocal about wanting.
Now, I had already tried Guzman Y Gomez fare at the South Bank franchise, but the fact that my lunch was free and brought to me by a colleague had me beaming from ear to ear.
There's no two ways about it. People love getting free stuff.
You know all those people who drive ridiculously far to use coupons, even though they end up spending more on fuel than what they save?
It doesn't matter. They gamed the system, it makes them feel good.
And so as long as they feel happy, who am I to judge?
The whole notion of free products is a win-win.
The appeal of not having to use your own money to receive products is strong enough to continually attract a wide variety of consumers.
Getting free stuff makes people love the company. This inspires loyalty, which keeps them coming back.
Yes, this might be some kind of coerced loyalty like the sweets that parents use to get children to behave at important events.
But it works.
Also, getting free stuff makes people want to share.
The Observer's social media posts on the new franchise, which had tonnes of likes and shares, are proof of that.
All and all, it's a very effective marketing ploy.
And a nice surprise - these days it's rare to find something truly without an extra catch.
Hopefully with the continued expansion of Stockland we will see many more new stores come to town, and another free lunch on the horizon.