December 02, 2010

Weekly Round-Up

Update: The original version of this post incorrectly identified the producer of Splatter Chef and Sit Right as Sullivan Productions. I regret the error.

Catching up after the holiday, so here's a long round-up of the latest items I didn't have time to give full reviews:

  1. Aluma Wallet. Pitch: "Fashion meets function with this trendy aluminum wallet." Marketer: Telebrands. Producer: Sullivan Productions. Comments: With the exception of Slim Clip, a personal triumph, wallets haven't been great on DRTV, especially ones targeted toward women. This one is supposed to be unisex, but I think it's more female-oriented and, as a result, unlikely to succeed. On a side note: This is the first Sullivan production I've seen in a while without Sully as the pitchman. [a]
  2. Celebrity Sweat. Pitch: "Go behind the scenes with Hip-Hop sensation Nelly as he takes you to the gym and shows you some of his favorite workouts for building muscle-tone." Starring: Nelly. Comments: I'm not going to tell him the problems with his campaign. Might see him at a show. You tell him! [a]
  3. Eye Lovely. Pitch: "The fast, cosmetic-free way to take the bags away." Comments: The site is already down, which is never a good sign. In any case, the positioning seems too narrow. Everyone has wrinkles, for example, but not everyone has puffy eyes. [a]
  4. Nano Bamboo. Pitch: "A virtually indestructible (bamboo) cleaning cloth with nano technology" Starring: Saul Judah. Comments: I've never seen the "clean with just water" pitch work. Cleaning cloths in general seem to be a tough sell. Super-asborption works, but not much else. [a]
  5. Night Bright Mat. Pitch: "It's a floor mat. It's a light. It's the Night Bright Mat." Comments: Cool idea, but it's been tried before without success. Good pitch, though. If I were coming at it cold, I'd give it even odds. [a]
  6. Poof Comb. Pitch: "Instantly volumize your hair and add inches of height." Marketer: Telebrands. Producer: Concepts TV. Comments: I think this one has credibility problems. If a comb could accomplish this, no one would have gone for Bumpits. [a]
  7. Push Up Max. Pitch: "From the makers of Iron Gym ... the most extreme push-up you'll ever do." Marketer: Ontel. Producer: LoudMouth TV. Comments: As a retail strategy, this makes a lot of sense. [a]
  8. Rapid Roaster. Pitch: "Cuts cooking time by 50 percent." Comments: The creative is weak, and the product is only useful on occassions where a full bird or roast is being cooked. I'm not sure how often that is for the average family, but I'd wager it isn't very often. [a]
  9. Santa's Genie. Pitch: "The easiest and fastest way to hang and store your Christmas lights." Marketer: Inventor's Business Center. Comments: Sometimes seasonality can be overcome (e.g. with summer items), but this is the worst-case scenario. Not only is media scarce in fourth quarter, planning inventory for Christmas has got to be a nightmare. That's because there's no "tail" on sales to bail you out. I'd never even attempt it. [a]
  10. Secret Styler. Pitch: "Look thinner and sexier in seconds." Comments: This one is a lot more style than solution, and that's always a problem. I think it's unlikely to succeed. [a]
  11. Sexy Legs. Marketer: IdeaVillage/Guthy-Renker. Starring: Leeza Gibbons. Pitch: "Cover spider veins, bruises, blemishes, tattoos and more." Comments: Great idea for a product, and with these two companies teaming up? Prediction: Hit. [a]
  12. Sit Right. Marketer: Telebrands. Pitch: "The new way to ensure you sit 'posture perfect' at home, in the office, or in your car." Comments: This one seems pretty lackluster to me. To use S7 terminology, I'm not sure it's really needed. The car angle is the only one that made sense to me. For work or home offices, you can buy this style of chair at most retailers. Anywhere else, you aren't sitting long enough for it to matter. [a]
  13. Splatter Chef. Marketer: Telebrands. Pitch: "Easily prevents kitchen splatters and stovetop and microwave messes." Comments: This is a classic "Swiss Army knife" product, and such multi-function items never seem to work on DRTV -- especially kitchen items. Also, Allstar tested the exact same item with the same pitch about a month ago. The site is no longer active. [a]
  14. Tie Pods. Marketer: Zoom TV Products. Pitch: "A better way to secure almost anything when you're on the move." Comments: I think this solves a major problem -- with bungee cords. The question is how often your average person uses a bungee cord. The demos didn't strike me as very "every day." [a]
  15. Twist Scarf. Pitch: "The most versatile fashion accessory ever." Comments: I reviewed a better version of this product idea recently for the forthcoming December issue of Response magazine. It's called Scarfy. I declared it "unlikely to succeed," so I think this one is even less likely to succeed. [a]
  16. Whoa Buddy. Marketer: Jarden. Pitch: "Helps your dog eat up to 5x slower." Comments: I like this commercial. They led with real-people testimonials as a way to introduce the problems the product solves, and it works really well. I'm a lot less enthusiastic about the product. Pet bowls have a poor track record on DRTV so far (see Tidy Table), and this concept has been tested before with poor results. I think that's because the problem isn't universal and this is "segmenting a segment" (targets the segment of the dog owner segment that has a dog who eats too fast). [a]

1 comment:

  1. Sexy Legs by Guthy Renker is a scam! I ordered the products 4 weeks ago and in spite of a $16.00 'postage charge' have still not received the products. I have been calling every few days and keep getting told it will arrive soon. I am so frustrated that I have cancelled the order.