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Lessons That “As Seen on TV” Can Teach About Marketing

If you are an insomniac like me, you may turn to your TV late at night for some distraction.

And, if you’ve done this at any time in the last couple of decades, you may be the proud owner of a “My Pillow”, “Shamwow” cleaning cloth or one of a cornucopia of other gadgets and items that are so effectively advertised with the “As Seen on TV” infomercial formula.

Granted, the Internet may today be the best go-to marketing format vs. those As Seen on TV (ASOTV) infomercials. But, the lessons learned from ASOTV successes remain true, regardless of media.

Here are 5 ideas that can be used from As Seen on TV marketing tactics:

1. Convince consumers that your product solves a problem

The beauty of ASOTV advertising is that it reveals solutions- even when consumers formerly did not know that they had a problem.

Of course, the successful ASOTV actually solve real problems; consumers do not always remember every-day annoyances until a commercial converts a forgotten need into an urgent one.

Your marketing scheme can reveal real problems that customers don’t always recognize, regardless of your industry or if you sell products or services. For example, if your messaging to potential customers reveals the true costs of producing annual reports in-house, you can easily convince them that they can save substantially and get higher quality by outsourcing this type of project to your business.

2. Make it urgent

It seems like most ASOTV ads sell limited time offers. Consumers stand to pay way more if they don’t buy in the next 5 hours.

If you run holiday sales or any type of limited time offer, then you already know that they can increase your income substantially, even during off-seasons. Offering prepaid spring lawn service discounts while snow drifts abound is one example.

But, this is not the only way to add urgency to customer response. Currently, medical providers and drug companies are making seniors aware of health risks ranging from the need for special flu vaccines to testing for dormant diseases. Even as they are providing a public service, they are getting more patients to visit health care providers.

3. Price it right

ASOTV has created a science out of pricing products to make them attractive. No, you don’t have to price everything at $19.95, but you do need to do your homework to find out what the right price is. Strike a balance between value and quality.

Customers resist paying top dollar (unless you’re Lamborghini or Tiffany), but extra-low prices might deter purchases by signaling inferior quality products or services.

4. Make sure that your brand is unmistakable

As long as they don’t interrupt one of my guest appearances on a show, I pay attention to unusually-entertaining commercials. But, while the Running of the Bull Dogs commercial is incredibly cute, I don’t necessarily remember the name of the advertised insurance product.

Enjoying advertising is not the same as remembering the product that it represents. ASOTV commercials seem to get it right, blending entertainment with brand awareness.

There’s something to be learned there, even if you don’t choose to hit customers over the head with your message. Regardless of your advertising medium of choice, make sure that your brand name gets mentioned early, often and in a memorable way.

5. Saturate the right markets with your message

Your business’ industry largely dictates your media of choice. While the Internet is appropriate for advertising virtually every product or service that you can imagine, TV commercials are more appropriate for certain businesses, while radio or print might be perfect for others.

But, don’t stop with one choice. You want to make sure that every likely customer finds out about your goods and services — and sees your message frequently. Choose creatively.

But wait… there’s more!

Hopefully, these suggestions will compel you to grab some popcorn during the late-night hours to uncover more ways to apply ASOTV infomercial techniques to your marketing campaign. Your ideas are available for five payments of only $0, but you have to act now! Operators are standing by.

More:

5 Proven Digital Marketing Tips to Win in Search, Social, & Email

About the author

Carol Roth is a radio host on WGN, a CNBC TV contributor, a ‘recovering’ investment banker & a bestselling author of The Entrepreneur Equation. You can find her on Twitter @CarolJSRoth or at www.CarolRoth.com. She also has an action figure made in her likeness.