7 Marketing Lessons We Can Learn From TV Infomercials:
I hate to share this, but I love watching infomercials. And I ordered more than once! Everything from cosmetics to cell phone accessories.
When in a hurry, my friends admit the same. If you sniff around most people’s homes, you’ll find SOMETHING ordered from an infomercial, be it Ronco Rotisserie or Victoria Principal Skin Care.
You may think of these often boring programs as “trash TV”, but think again. Did you know they are using many of the same strategies that we should?
Now, I’m not saying you should yell at your customers or display “$ 19.95” in flashing numbers on your website! They are gadgets. But what most people don’t realize is that many of the STRATEGIES that sell the Doohickey Kitchen Gadget are the same ones that can sell your products and programs as well.)
Here are 7 of my favorites:
1. They grab your attention.
The infomercials run on the most difficult medium ever – television. You are only a second away from your prospect who clicks on their remote control to access the next channel. So they do their best to get your attention right away and KEEP it as long as possible.
That’s why infomercials make bold statements and highlight how this doohickey is going to change your life. You should do that too – stop beating around the bush and make it clear to your prospects how your products and services will * change * their * life!
2. They give tons of real testimonials.
You will see that television infomercials have evolved a lot over the years. Previously, one or two people were talking to a camera the whole time. The most typical 30 minute spots these days are over 80% customer testimonials! And that’s for good reason… they’re the BEST way to gain instant credibility.
A good example is for one of these home exercise machines. I noticed years ago they just showed the super ripped guy using it on the infomercial. Now they’re showing this guy, PLUS dozens of before and after testimonials from real guys with beer bellies and real jobs who have used the product successfully. It was a good decision on their part because come on, I can’t believe this super ripped guy got this sexy look just using it for 30 minutes, 3 times a week!
3. They use personalities.
The most successful infomercials now use famous guest hosts. They know it catches people’s attention more than just about anything out there. Pro Activ uses Jessica Simpson. Youthful Essence (a skincare product that I love) uses Susan Lucci. Even NutriSystem now uses Dan Marino in its ads to target men.
You can do the same in your marketing. You can either hire a star or better, make YOURSELF famous… by sharing stories, being personal and having fun with your market.
4. They make an irresistible offer.
It’s rare these days to see an infomercial asking you to pay for something in full. You will mainly see things like “3 payments of $ 19.95” or “4 payments of $ 39.95”. Why? Cash-strapped Americans are always more concerned with cash flow than total price. They’ll even happily pay a LOT MORE at the end in order to earn a lower monthly payment!
You can do the same. Offer a payment plan for your products, courses, workshops and coaching. You will be AMAZED for the increased response, and it’s easy to do with marketing savvy shopping cart systems.
5. They issue a powerful call to action NOW.
These people know that as soon as you change the channel, you will forget about their product. So it is very urgent that you pick up the phone and call them now or visit their website and order. They usually say something like “If you call in the next 10 minutes you also get…” and they list some great bonuses.
It’s not just specific to television. Everyone prefers to postpone ANY decision these days, we are all so busy and overwhelmed! So you have to give people a GOOD REASON to act now, whether it’s an expiring discount, an expiring payment plan, a limited number of products or seats, a special bonus… you get the idea.
6. They sell on continuity.
What is “continuity”? online newsletter is when you make ONE sale that incurs multiple fees over and over again. For example, because my friends were excited about I.D. Bare Minerals Natural Makeup, I recently ordered a kit from their infomercial. Now, every 2 months, I receive a new credit by post and my card is debited again. I love it because I don’t have to remember to rearrange. They love it because they only had one sale to make, and how they had me as a customer forever until I canceled!
Listen to me now… continuity will change your life! Think about how you can use this principle in your business. Could you convert some of your current offers to a monthly subscription? Or instead of doing one-off teleseminars, create an ongoing monthly program? (I did this with my Marketing & Motivation Mastermind.)
7. They repeat themselves. And repeat themselves.
And repeat agadans! Savvy marketers know it takes an average of 9 TIMES for someone to see / hear your message BEFORE they consider buying! This is fine for you too. So many of my clients complain that the ad doesn’t work when they only show one ad. Or published a newsletter and it didn’t get any results.
Remember, it’s the continued exposure and repetition that builds familiarity and trust with your prospects! And it leads to more sales than you ever imagined.