We have a wide range of consulting experience from long-form infomercials to short-form spots, helping marketers to get a fresh perspective on ways to improve their current commercial or how to approach a fresh creative.
Here is a detailed example of one such client project.
First off, let me tell you what I liked about the show. It was beautifully shot with excellent production value and Gary Collins is a loveable, believable and well-respected host. The wide variety of testimonials with their different pain relief needs, along with so many doctor endorsements is quite strong. Based upon those endorsements, as a consumer, I was convinced that MyoRx is a product that has provided real results for pain sufferers. That being said, I have listed some points below that I feel deserve consideration.
- First and foremost: this product feels like it is better suited for a 2:00 commercial – not a full length infomercial. It is obviously a heavily testimonial driven product, and while it would be impossible to fit all of those great endorsements into a shorter time frame, the bottom line is: You have pain, you need relief, MyoRx is the solution. Within the first few minutes of testimonials, you’ve either decided you want to try this amazing risk free product, or you don’t.
- As a consumer, I’m still left wondering what makes MyoRx better than BenGay? Patented ingredients aside, I kept waiting for some comparison to be made, whether it be cost, effectiveness, or something to convince me that this product was worth the money and the wait for delivery rather than just going to the drug store and buying an over the counter analgesic. While there was an occasional mention here and there by either patients and/or doctors stating that they didn’t respond to medication, but that they did respond to MyoRx, it’s a point that should really be driven home repeatedly. If there was a testimonial where someone stated that it works better than BenGay, I think it would be helpful.
- I also think the price point is too high. Looking at the cost of the offer, even with the three 2oz. jars, a booklet (I really don’t think this would be the motivating factor to make or break the sale) and the coupons (which many people would prefer a straight discount instead), once you pay the shipping and handling, it’s still cheaper to buy something over the counter. BenGay also offers 6 different formulations targeted to specific pain needs, including a “vanishing-scent formula”. While I personally like the smell of MyoRx, a lot of people don’t care for heavily scented products. Plus, by going to your local drug store, you get immediate gratification. Has the product ever been tested at $19.95?
- I think by being exclusive only to TV and the Internet isn’t in the best interest of overall sales. Even when an infomercial or short form spot doesn’t “work”, if it at least breaks even and the product is available at retail, it creates a greater potential for sales. Many times people might see the product at retail, remember having seen it on TV, and make the impulse buy.
- The tone of the overall show, including the CTA, is very “soft sell”. While I don’t personally prefer the stereotypical “Oh No! Has this ever happened to you?” – I have had firsthand experience of the “slice and dice, in-your-face” pitch performing much better than a clean, soft sell. With 300+ channels to choose from and the overall saturation of DRTV, the soft sell is an easy one to ignore. Something needs to jump out and grab your attention. It’s almost as if Americans have been trained throughout the years to respond more readily to a hard sell, especially when it comes to the CTA.
- To that point, there was no separation going into the CTA (i.e. dip to black, elevated tone in announcer VO, stronger music), making it less obvious that it was time to finally find out the price, offer and ordering instructions. Even though Gary tells the viewer to get ready to take down a number, between Gary and the CTA is another scene with an elderly woman in bed. This is a distraction, albeit minor, from Gary’s final appeal before the CTA. Rolling straight into the CTA after Gary tells the viewer to “get ready” might be stronger.
- There are only 2 CTA’s which are 4 minutes in length. While the 2 CTA format is not entirely uncommon, most of the shows I work on run 3 identical CTA’s, strategically spaced throughout the show, and are also built to act as stand-alone 2 minute spots for economy of scale. Again, the tone of the CTA was very soft sell, which could potentially be part of the problem. In the MyoRx show, the first CTA does not hit until 9 minutes in. This is about 2-3 minutes later than, as a consumer watching from the show from the beginning, I might have expected. I didn’t receive a customized version of the show, but based on the positioning of the graphics, it looks as though the 800 is up throughout most of the show, which is a good thing. But viewing the show strictly from a consumer point of view, I was becoming increasingly impatient waiting to find out the price, offer and how to order. As I stated earlier, I had made up my mind within the first few minutes that, if I were a pain sufferer and didn’t respond to medication or over the counter remedies, this was a product worth trying. Especially with a product that is not particularly demonstrable and can’t really “show” before and after support, it is important to ask for the sale often. I feel that even four shorter CTA’s would not be inappropriate in a long form show for a product like this, which would also provide a greater opportunity for channel surfers to catch the offer.
- From a marketing standpoint, the product name – MyoRx – isn’t particularly catchy. It’s an easy name to forget. This may not even be an issue up for discussion, but a catchier name would at least be something that would stay in the mind of the consumer, so even if they didn’t order immediately, they might remember the name and seek it out at some point in the future. This also goes back to my earlier point of making the product available at retail.
- There is a contradiction in the CTA: The voice over states: “Call in the next 17 minutes” and the CG on the screen states: “Call in the next 5 minutes”. Although this might seem to be a minor point, it goes to the issue of credibility. Almost every DRTV commercial uses the “call in the next __ minutes” approach to create a sense of urgency, but when the VO and CG contradict one another, the consumer could feel as though they’re having one “pulled over” on them, potentially giving them pause to rethink their order.
- Irma Johnson, the postal worker, is a great feature testimonial, but when she and Gary are walking arm in arm, it looks as if she needs Gary to hold her up, which from a consumer psychology point of view, even on a subconscious level, could damage the credibility of the product’s effectiveness. Ideally, she should be walking unassisted with maybe even a bounce in her step. To that point, many of the testimonials that were supported by b-roll showed people doing their everyday activities, presumably pain-free, but very few of them are smiling. This also goes to the issue of consumer psychology. Not that they all need to be grinning from ear to ear, but even a slight pleasant smile will visually reinforce their endorsements in the back of the consumer’s minds.
- Not that it makes any difference, but I did notice that not all of the testimonials had lower 3rds. I really liked the idea of putting a name to the face and listing the pain they suffer from. It’s just an inconsistency that I noticed.
Suggested Revision Options:
- Less doctor, more host. While the doctor has created a wonderful product, he is not the best on camera spokesperson. I also think that if Gary were teamed up with a younger individual, maybe a sports celebrity, it would add more energy to the overall tone of the show and support the point that this is a product for all ages.
- What really seems to set this product apart from others on the market is the Omega Oils. The story about the Eskimos having very few arthritic problems due to their diet consisting mainly of fish that contain these vital oils, especially in such a cold climate in which arthritic conditions seem to intensify, is a fascinating point that deserves more attention. You may remember on HSN, there is/was a fantastic selling skin care product called Essence of Time. The story behind it was that a well-preserved body was found in a bog (more commonly referred to as the “Bog Man”) and scientists were amazed at how well the skin was preserved. The main product pitch repeatedly hammered how this several thousand-year-old man’s skin was so incredibly preserved, and the active ingredient found in the bog had been identified and formulated into this fantastic skin care product. As bizarre as the story is, it hooked thousands of viewers resulting in incredible sales. Perhaps if the MyoRx “twist” could be capitalized on – Gary visiting Alaska and interviewing a native Eskimo doctor, and/or other arthritis experts, to discuss in more detail the incredible, lasting benefits of the Omega Oils – it would make more people sit up and take notice. It’s having this major point of difference that could ultimately generate more sales.
- Include more cost and/or ingredient comparisons to BenGay and/or other topical analgesics and prescription arthritis medications.
- Gary mentioned that sports teams are using this product. If possible, it would be really strong to get endorsements from these current teams. The “former” players and coaches don’t have the same impact as current/active players.
- More SMILING active people – we see them doing their everyday tasks, pleasantly smiling showing us that they are “pain free”.
- Have Gary give his own testimonial first and repeatedly throughout the show.
Show Open and/or CTA Open Copy Suggestion:
“A football player, a grandmother, a postal worker, a secretary, a doctor … what do all of these people have in common? They all used to suffer from debilitating pain, but not anymore! They’ve discovered MyoRx! The only patented topical pain reliever with the healing power of Omega Oils!”
“If you suffer from any of these kinds of pain (show CG list) and don’t respond to over the counter treatments or expensive prescription medication, then you need MyoRx!