We have all watched them and whether we admit it or not have probably bought a few items "As Seen On TV" hoping to change our lives, closets, in-grown hairs or bad breath forever ....
"Turn on the television late at night, and you are sure to see an infomercial for the latest and greatest hot item you just can't seem to live without," said Kevin Harrington, Chairman of As Seen On TV, Inc. "But often, it's not just the product but the carefully crafted sales pitch that leads you to a purchase."
It's those powerful pitches delivered by popular pitchmen like Tony Little, Ron Popeil, Anthony Sullivan, and the late Billy Mays that have skyrocketed the As Seen On TV industry into a $350 billion business. "From Ginsu to Snuggie to ShamWow, infomercial products are no longer just a late-night phenomenon but common household names," said Michael Planit, President of Product Strategies, Inc. and the author of the book Operators Are Standing By! "Direct response television is the fastest and best way to introduce a product to the consumer market while gaining widespread exposure for that product."
So what are those common phrases and taglines that have As Seen On TV customers dialing in decade after decade?
10. 2 easy payments of $19.99! No matter the product, there is one thing that will deter the purchase of any viewer: a high price tag. By splitting a purchase into easy payments, it is seen as more affordable.
9. Money back guaranteed! There's no reason not to buy a product when you are guaranteed to get your money back if you are dissatisfied.
8. Not available in stores. To address a common excuse: "I'll pick it up next time I go to the store."
7. Call right now/Act now!/Limited time only! This common As Seen On TV phrase creates a sense of urgency in the purchase-making decision process.
6. We'll double the offer. To sweeten the deal, the pitchman may add more value to the purchase with a free product or two of the same item.
5. You can do it! This saying was made popular by fitness guru and pitchman Tony Little. If Tony can do it, so can you.
4. Operators standing by! Some infomercials even include a ticking clock, suggesting that once the ad or paid program is over, no one will be able to take an order.
3. Set it and forget it. This phrase was made popular by Ron "Ronco" Popeil, one of America's most celebrated inventors who first gained acclaim for his role as pitchman in his own product infomercials. Over the past 40 years, his products have pulled in more than $2 billion in sales. "I'm the 'set it and forget it' man," said Ron Popeil, inventor and pitchman of the Ronco Showtime Rotisserie, to AsSeenOnTV.com. "If people see me at an airport, that's what they call me." Mr. Popeil first incorporated this saying into the infomercial for his Showtime Rotisserie.
2. Life's a pitch and then you buy. One of the most quotable sayings from one of the most acclaimed As Seen On TV pitchmen of all time Billy Mays, most notable for his promotion of OxiClean, Orange Glo, Kaboom, and other cleaning, home and maintenance products.
And last, but certainly not least:
1. Arguably the most popular infomercial tagline – But wait, there's more! This phrase was made popular by, once again, Mr. Ron Popeil, the 'set it and forget it' man. Although he was not the creator of the phrase, he certainly popularized it.