June 25, 2011

Weekly Round-Up

Cleaning out my folder, I found 15 items I hadn't blogged about before. Some are no longer live online, but here they are for posterity:

  1. Glamour Curls. Pitch: "The fun, easy way to curl your hair." Marketer: Telebrands. Producer: Monte-Brooks. Comments: Definitely one of the more bizarre-looking products I've seen lately! In any case, the "Hollywood glamour" pitch has been tried many times before in the hair category. So unless neon dreadlocks are the next hair trend, I don't see this one taking off. [a]
  2. Grass Gator Rampage. Marketer: National Express. Pitch: "Takes all the hassle out of trimming." Comments: It seems one of these launches every summer. There must be a market in there somewhere, and I have no idea how to evaluate whether this is right for it. [a]
  3. Grout Bully. Producer: Bluewater Media. Pitch: "Cleans, renews, design grout on contact." Comments: I've been down this road twice before. It's a dead end. [a]
  4. Hair Glider. Pitch: "Untangles tough to brush hair for that salon smooth look." Comments: I like Telebrands' version of this concept better. [a]
  5. Herschel Walker 360X. Pitch: "New workout that will give you results Herschel Walker style." Marketer: Allstar. Comments: This came and went quickly. The site is already down. But I remember thinking this push-up mat designed with Herschel's brand of fitness in mind had a decent shot.
  6. Jewel Spool. Pitch: "The retractable [clasp] that lets you slip any chain over your head." Marketer: Allstar. Comments: IdeaVillage's Clever Clasp, a magnetic version of this idea, had a nice run in 2007. This is a bulkier solution, and it appears it didn't get off the ground.
  7. Kollar Guard. Pitch: "Knock out ring-around-the-collar for good." Comments: Pretty sure Wisk solved this problem in the 1970s. By the way, I have a great idea for a product: A device that allows you to create facsimiles of documents and send them over the phone. Pretty cool, huh? [a]
  8. Magic Mesh. Pitch: "The new type of screen door that opens easily and then magically closes itself behind you." Marketer: Allstar. Producer: Producers Direct. Comments: Should do well in season, but seasonal items are always hard to manage. [a]
  9. Press X-Press. Pitch: "The amazing ironing pad that holds clothes tight so you can iron right in half the time." Marketer: Allstar. Producer: Opfer Communications. Comments: Neat item with some pretty cool demos, but the site is already down. [a]
  10. Rest-n-Roll. Pitch: "The world's most convenient store and go solution." Comments: Amateur hour, and ultimately way too expensive for DRTV. Prediction: Bomb. On the other hand, their inventors' page does claim they are the "leader in DRTV markting and sales," so maybe I should reconsider? [a]
  11. Restorz It. Pitch: "The amazing once-a-year car treatment that restores, polishes and protects the finish on any car." Starring: Joe Fowler. Marketer: Simoniz USA. Comments: Joe needs to take a breath once in a while! Otherwise, I have no comment. Pretty standard fare for this category, and it seems these campaigns are more about brand support. [a]
  12. Roto-Peel. Pitch: "The three-in-one peeler ... [that] peels, slice and juliennes." Starring: Steve Harkey. Marketer: Miracle Blade/Sylmark. Producer: Dynamic TV Marketing. Comments: Interesting product, but I think it falls into the "Swiss Army Knife" trap. [a]
  13. Shoo Bug. Pitch: "Tag on. Bug off!" Comments: Cool product that's definitely different. I also like the playground testimonials. However, it takes almost a minute to understand the product and establish its credibility -- not good when America has been trained to have 30-second attention spans. [a]
  14. Silver Sonic Micro. Pitch: "Smaller than the latest cell phone technology." Marketer: Bell & Howell/Emson. Comments: Unlikely to sell well direct, but makes sense to support the brand at retail. [a]
  15. Slim Seat. Pitch: "Sit on your butt and get rid of your gut." Starring: Jaime Brenkus. Comments: I like this one because I think it taps into the same idea that fueled Fitness Quest's Ab Lounge. Call it "lazy fitness," which is the dream for most DRTV buyers. [a]


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  2. I've heard from both overjoyed and (extremely) underwhelmed Grout Bully customers. Some say it works exactly as promised, others (after waiting months for delivery) say it lasts about a month, or until it gets wet... and dissolves. What's your take on this product? Would you spend good money and use it in your home?