Magnum – The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Side of Comping

Posted on: June 23rd, 2009 by Jason 30 Comments

One of the most talked about competitions of 2009 is the Magnum Pleasure Card. Over the last few months they have been offering people the chance to win a share of £1million. To enter you needed a code from a Magnum ice cream stick which, when entered online or via text, could make you a winner. On paper it all sounds so simple, but in reality Magnum’s competitions highlights The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of comping.

The Good
Comping used to be a fairly isolated hobby but with the development of the internet and communities such as Loquax it’s now a more social pastime for many. Compers from around The UK can compare notes, share wins and just chat about competitions and prizes.

By being able to discuss the Magnum competition, compers have been able to spot technical issues with the promotion and help Magnum (and fellow compers) in getting problems fixed.

The Bad

These kind of code related instant win competitions never seem to run smoothly (Fanta, Nutrigrain) – or at least from a Loquax point of view appear to be nothing but a PITA as they generate heated forum discussions! Brands enter into these big promotions without really ever thinking of the potential issues and problems that may arise.

No big promotion ever runs without hitch, but this one seems to have suffered glitch after glitch leaving many compers annoyed and frustrated.

The Ugly

These kind of competitions always attract unsavoury allegations, especially when some people win more than others, and there are finger pointing forum posts around the net which question whether some entrants have not entered into the “spirit of the competition” or treated it as a “private piggy bank”.

Only Unilever can decide these issues, but finger pointing, without fact, at fellow compers is just plain ugly and puts everyone in a bad light. Perhaps if you’re concerned by a competition it’s better to complain privately to the promoters first and then report back when you have answers?

We don’t have the answers, but we have watched the competition from the sidelines.

Chips or Ice Cream?

Let’s say you enter a casino with £10 of gaming chips, spend them and lose the lot. However, the guy next to you has £100 of chips, spends them and wins £150! Do you complain that he’s not entered into the spirit of things? Or that it’s not a level playing field.

Of course not.

Now replace the chips with Magnums!

You see, in our view, this wasn’t really a “competition” but more of a gambling promotion! Some people realised they could “beat the bank” by buying more ice cream then they usually would and by investing a few pounds they managed to, when the promotion worked, play the system.

And let’s face it we all like to play the system or get consumer revenge?

Of course, Loquax does not condone outright cheating, and if any dubious issues have occurred, we’d hope Magnum take the appropriate action.

But for example, some compers want answers on a plate or links to entry pages to save them time – isn’t that playing the system and not “in the spirit of the competition”?

Money savers want coupon codes, loopholes or perhaps to take advantage of cheap deals like the 29p Amazon glitch. That’s also playing the system and taking an unfair advantage, isn’t it?

So why is it a surprise (or even wrong) when someone realises that by buying loads of ice cream they can do well from a promotion?

Running a good promotion always lies in the hands of the promoters. They need to run their competitions a lot lot better, even more so now “The Good” of comping communities are in place. However, big brands may well tighten up the rules and make sure things work properly, but we don’t think that’ll ever stop people looking for loopholes or pointing fingers at fellow compers.

The alternative is that big brands could see that the benefits of these kind of competitions don’t outweigh the problems they bring. They may well decide to stop running competitions altogether – meaning that we all end up losing in the end.

Overall, some people will have done very well from Magnum, others ok whilst loads more have been disappointed with a few or no wins at all. However, comping rarely wins when people are pointing fingers and it leaves a bitter taste for all involved.

Join The Conversation

  • pixie76

    very well written

  • Luvaduck

    I agree, its very much a gamble you take with these sort of competitions. Luckily for me Magnums are very tasty and Ive enjoyed every moment.

  • bertykat

    Magnums don’t leave a bitter taste…..more like a fatty lard film on the roof of your mouth…..ick!

  • bertykat

    Ooooh why am I a purple boingy fing 😀

  • tiffany25

    very well put

  • zolakins

    Halle….halleyul…….halleyulah ……………….. hurray! the soothing voice of reason. Well written Jason.


  • muffy0

    A great blog post, ta

  • shelly78

    Excellent blog Jason, well said!

  • hellybell

    Thanks Jason and well done, You’ve put it brilliantly, we all love comping and we are a great community and I love being part of it.I have bonded with a lot more loquats over the whole Magnum Comp.

  • mandy101

    Well said Jason…. These type of comp’s will always cause a stir, but i for one will alway’s enter them lol

    bertykat the magnum’s leave a fatty lard around the hips and thigh’s also ha ha !!!

  • car01e

    a great peice of writing jason. one thing ive noticed about loquax is that…on the surface at least lol…we are all chuffed to bits for one another when we have a win….pity the same cant be said for others!


  • ellie vegas

    I think you’ve summed it up very well Jason. I particularly like the comparison to the casino – very aptly put. I think those that have had multiple wins have inspired those of us who are novices and given us hints and tips how to compete and win.

  • stormy1051

    Well said Jason


    I do very much agree with you. Although I don’t like the waste this competition has created. People talking about flushing ice creams down the sink. Seems such a waste!

  • Magnum_

    Unilever, Magnum
    Win your share of £1,000,000 promotion

    Magnum would like to thank all those who participated in the Magnum Pleasure Card promotion. The promotion has experienced an unprecedented response. Unfortunately, this has resulted in a delay in sending out the Magnum Pleasure Cards, as we have had to produce considerably more cards than anticipated. We apologise for the disappointment caused by the delay, but would like to reassure you that we are doing everything possible to clear the backlog of cards as soon as possible.

    We aim to send out the cards according to the following timetable:

    For card claims received between / your cards will be posted

    1st April to 12th May / week commencing 22nd June

    12th May to 31st May / week commencing 29th June

    31st May to 7th June / week commencing 5th July

    7th June to 14th June / week commencing 5th July

    14th June to 30th June / week commencing 12th July

    These timings may be subject to some changes, but please be assured that all cards that have been won will be distributed and will be valid for 12 months from date of issue.

    If you have any queries regarding the activation of your pleasure card please refer to “contact us” in the Magnum Pleasure Card winners zone, available at

    If you have any queries regarding the Terms and Conditions of the Magnum Pleasure Card promotion please contact the Magnum Customer Careline 0800 731 1507, or by emailing us at

    Alternatively, please refer to the “Questions and Answers” fact sheet if you have any other queries not listed above.

    Once again, thank you for your participation and patience during these delays. We hope you enjoy using your Magnum Pleasure Card.

  • bigspectre

    well I purchased £10 worth of magnums and won £30 back in 2 prizes a £20 and £10. Both were entered at 8am in the morning. It seems a lot of people were entering at all hours(me included) thinking that there would be fewer entries then nut I think and hope it was the luck of the draw.

    The piece by Jason was well written and thought out. Congrats to anyone else who won. I have eaten my last magnum.

  • horty1

    I am fairly new to comping and have entered one code each day for the last 2 months as my husband eats one magnum per day . Todate I have had about 13 wins totalling £300 from items I would have bought anyway. I have not bulk bought or put any down the sink but am delighted with my wins. Well written Jason I always thought people who won loads bought the contents of the shop to do so . this has restored my faith in competitions they are a lottery!!

  • hary

    thanks for the casino comparison jason. personally i think of it as buying the lottery – mostly win £10 with that too except it’s much better cos i do get to eat the ice-cream. agree with winningaway about the waste of ice-cream. we’ve always had ice-cream at home only it’s been magnum ones recently. 2 boxes left.
    detox in july?

  • AngelaGV

    Maybe this has backfired on the lovely people from Magnum who may see their sales fall dramatically once the competition is over! Once Magnums were a treat, a luxury to be savoured. Who else is sick of Magnums? lol

  • anandi

    I just wish I had been able to purchase the comp packs at the beginning of the promotion. I thought I was in .luck, but the packs I found in the local co-op were from last year’s promotion.

  • tizliz

    I haven’t had the pleasure of entering this competition as there have been no promotion Magnums in the shops here. On the one hand it would have been nice to have a chance to win a prize but on the other hand I haven’t put on any weight!

  • Janetf

    Well written article.

    I have only entered it a few times as I don’t usualy buy magnum as it is too expensive compared to other brands.

    On the times I have tried to enter I’ve had that much problem entering the codes that I wonder if it was really worth the extra expence.

  • ch56

    I bought a few boxes but did not have any luck, so I gave up buying them. It has now put me off buying them as they are expensive and a whole lot of calories.

  • susanemily

    I bought one box, couldnt read the codes. Got sent a freepost address to send the sticks too.
    Replacements arrived on the 24th June and I was notified of a £20 win on the 27th.
    Good article Jason, very well written.

  • susanemily

    Ohh yes, I only bought one box.

  • JudeVFR400

    I only bought one box as I don’t like them, my partner likes them but doesn’t want the extra calories, and it’s like gambling. As soon as money is involved I’m not lucky. Or at least, I don’t want/can’t afford to risk it. Well done those that did win.

  • mercury3

    Quote by Magnum – Unfortunately, this has resulted in a delay in sending out the Magnum Pleasure Cards, as we have had to produce considerably more cards than anticipated.

    How can they say that when they knew that there would be 25 winners per hour and they knew how long their competition lasted. I’m baffled!

    I enjoyed the competition but glad to be getting a full night’s sleep now!

  • sophsam


    12th May to 31st May / week commencing 29th June

    no sign of them yet!

    another statement not fullfilled?

  • maddiec

    I can’t see a problem, promotions like this are to increase sales, and I would rather eat ice-cream than go to a casino anyway. I’d like more comps like this : )
    I have recieved two cards so they are on the way.

  • chrisd0302

    Didn’t win a sausage but enjoyed eating the Magnums, on a diet now!!!!