Infomercials don’t get no respect
Millions of us have bought billions of dollars worth of Veg-O-Matics, and Buttoneers and food dehydrators and other products after seeing an infomercial. As effective as they are, though, you won’t find many articles about infomercials that don’t use words like “tacky” and “cheap.” That’s a shame because you can learn a lot about selling by studying those infomercials.
Lessons learned the hard way
Way before television was a part of our lives there were pitchmen who made their money by convincing people to buy products they might not have thought of before. They worked the state and county fairs. They lined the boardwalks. They set up shop next to the cosmetics counter in the local five and dime. Then they drew a crowd and sold what they had to sell.
Today’s infomercials use the principles that those pitchmen learned the hard way. Here are five of them that will help you sell more in print.
Dramatize a common problem and solve it
Pick a common problem to solve. It doesn’t have to be big or important, but there has to be a problem to solve. Then dramatize the problem and the solution.
Promise a magical solution
People want to buy magic things. Promise a magical solution to that problem.
Pile on the benefits
Don’t stop with one benefit. Pile ’em on. Add products as bonuses. I got the Gensu knife that’s lived in my drawer for more than twenty years as a bonus for buying another product I can’t even remember.
Make it easy
Show how easy it is to get magical results with your product. Make it easy to buy, too
Make it safe
Every new purchase brings anxiety. What if it doesn’t work? What if I can’t use it? Infomercials are filled with guarantees of all kinds that make it feel safe to buy.
Don’t reinvent the wheel
You have a choice. You can learn how to sell products in print on your own, complete with painful failures. Or you can learn from the infomercials.
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