Yes, the 1-833-Tell-BFI number on the Butterfinger ad is a real phone number.
In numerical format, the number is 1-833-835-5234. It’s a toll-free number in the US.
It Starts Out Fun
If you call, you’ll hear a recording from Detective Hugh Dunnit, the character on the Butterfinger Investigators promo.
Dunnit will prompt you to choose from three options:
- Report the theft of a Butterfinger
- Report that you have stolen a Butterfinger
- Enter a contest for $25,000
With options 2 and 3, your call is forwarded to Detective Ali Byes.
All of the options will offer you a coupon. According to the recording, you simply press 1 and they’ll text you a coupon for a Butterfinger, as is clearly stated on option 3 (each option says it a bit differently).
But there’s more to it than just pressing 1… and you don’t really get a text with a coupon for a Butterfinger.
What You Really Get
After pressing 1, you’ll receive a text that says:
“Please visit https://ibota.com/home/offer-tag/ButterfingerFunSize”
On that page, you have to sign in or create an Ibota account to continue toward your coupon.
Which means giving them your name, email address, birthday… and of course they already have your phone number since they texted you the link… and signing up for an app that you might otherwise not have gotten.
What you thought was a promo for Butterfingers, quickly turns into you having to get a cash back app called Ibota to get your free coupon.
After going through the app’s email verification several times (in my case at least), and going back to the link on the text and reclicking on it while logged into Ibota – the “coupon” finally appears.
But it’s not a coupon for a Butterfinger.
It’s a $1 cash back credit on the app when you purchase a 10 ounce bag of fun size Butterfinger, Baby Ruth, Crunch or 100 Grand bars… if you purchase the bag at a Walmart within the next two days.
So who stole the Butterfinger?
Seems the company that makes them did.
Back to the phone call now:
Option 3 also provides information on how to enter a sweepstakes for $25,000 by signing up through https://butterfingercasefiles.com/ and submitting your ‘mug shot’.
The sweepstakes is open to residents in all 50 US states over the age of 13, according to the site. The sweepstakes is sponsored by Ferrero U.S.A., Inc, the maker of Butterfingers. The sweepstakes ends November 8, 2021 at midnight.
It’s A Bait & Switch
What starts out as a fun little promo that promises a free “coupon” for a Butterfinger, quickly turns into giving away your name and contact information and signing up for an app that you didn’t want to begin with – all for $1 cash back through the app on the purchase of a bag of candy with strict limitations on availability.
That leaves a bad taste in the mouth of this consumer reporter.