May 08, 2014

Weekly Round-Up

  1. efiltr. Starring: Christie Brinkley. Pitch: "Reduce exposure to radiation from your cell phone." Comments: Fear and prevention. Selling the invisible. These are not ingredients in the recipe for DRTV success -- no matter how passionate "Ambassador" Brinkley may be about this issue. Although I have my doubts, it's possible cell-phone radiation will end up being the next asbestos. It may even prove to be as devastating to the human body as smoking. But if history has taught us anything, no one is going to take action for decades and until well after it's too late for preventative measures. [ss]
  3. Genie Hose. Marketer: Tristar. Pitch: "The first multi-way pantyhose with a hidden seem that opens to expose your toes." Comments: Another addition to the line. The Web address redirected to the main site, so it may not have succeeded. (Link goes to spot.) [ss]
  5. Knot Out. Pitch: "The fast and easy way to remove stubborn jewelry knots in seconds." Comments: This is a solution for a specific and infrequent problem. As such, it is unlikely to generate the volume of response necessary to succeed. [ss]
  7. Magna Screen. Pitch: "A new type of screen door that lets the fresh air in while keeping ... annoying bugs out." Comments: Not only is this a copy of Allstar's Magic Mesh product, it's also a near word-for-word copy of my Magic Mesh commercial. (Use the links to watch and compare for yourself.) In any case, Magic Mesh is still going strong in its third year and currently all over retail. There is very little opportunity left -- even for bottom-feeders. [ss]
  9. Maxxable. Pitch: "A custom clip that allows you to finally hold onto your phone without fear of dropping it." Comments: Amateur hour. I'm not one of those purists who insists a commercial must get to the product in 8-12 seconds, but 30 seconds is definitely too long to wait! We get it: Dropping a phone is bad. [ss]
  11. My Cane. Marketer: Tristar. Pitch: "The portable, lightweight cane with built-in lights." Comments: This is the third attempt to do a value version of HurryCane. IdeaVillage was first with Clever Cane, but got beaten (again) by Telebrands. Their Trusty Cane is now all over retail. In DR, the third time is never the charm -- especially if Telebrands is well ahead of you! [ss]
  13. Pad Pivot. Pitch: "A lap and desk stand that perfects the [mobile device] viewing experience." Comments: There have been several attempts in this category (e.g. Stick Stand), none of them successful. In general, mobile-device accessories have a terrible track record on DRTV and should probably be avoided. The few positive case studies aren't strong enough to warrant further investment. [ss]
  15. Zippy Pillow. Pitch: "Changes shapes to give you soothing support where you need it most." Comments: This is a lesser Total Pillow at least two years too early to try bringing that concept back. In general, I also think pillows continue to be an over-mined category. [ss]

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