June 11, 2007

Weekly Round-Up

From the Pre-Blog Archives

  1. GRILL DADDY ($19.95) is a BBQ grill cleaning tool. It has stainless steel bristles and release a stream of water that creates a steam-cleaning effect on hot grills. The bonus is a color-changing meat thermometer. This is a Steve Harkey commercial. Comments: Adding a water gun to a generic grill cleaning brush isn't going to move people off the couch.
  3. READY BED (2 pay, $19.95) is a combined air mattress and sleeping bag for kids. There are four different themes: Dora the Explorer, Disney Princess, Spider Man and Thomas & Friends. The offer includes a "messenger bag" style carrying case and a battery-powered pump. The bonus is a travel neck pillow for kids. Comments: I like it. The price is high for DRTV and the market/media is limited, but the product is a wow idea and a great solution for sleepovers.
  5. MAGIC CARRY ($19.99) is a harness system for moving heavy objects. It consists of shoulder straps and clips that let you use evenly distribute the weight and leaves your hands free. Uses include: Lifting air conditioners, monitors, mattresses, etc. The offer includes a support pad for extra heavy things. The bonus is a set of four "Easy Sliders" (aka Moving Men). This is a Billy Mays commercial.

    Comments: Unlikely to succeed. This is reminiscent of the Forearm Forklifts, and suffers from some of the same shortcomings. But while the Forearm Forklifts weren't a great value, this at least looks like it's worth $20. The problem is one of credibility. I don't think people (especially the older, more fragile DRTV buyer) will believe that a system of straps will allow them to lift two or three times what they can lift normally.
  7. CLEAR-2-O ($12.95 S&H) is a water-purifying pitcher that is supposed to filter out five times more contaminants than similar products. Instead of running water into the top, you attach a hose to your spigot. The offer is try it free, just pay S&H. They also pitch their home delivery program for the filters.

    Comments: Unlikely to succeed. This is a classic "better than" product. As a result, it faces the same challenge all products of this sort face -- the leading product is good enough. In the commercial, they use cloudy water to demonstrate the superiority of their filtration. But in real life, the tap water probably isn't cloudy and the leader's product (i.e. Brita) is producing crystal clear results. That means the consumer would need an education and a microscope to appreciate the benefits of this item, which means it's not an impulse buy.

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