When I think of something as being dark, I think about something being hidden away from light, something just a little bit scary or eerie. So when my friend Sue made the comment about infomercials having a dark side, I wondered about that. I’d never really given any thought to them other than when I came across one while watching TV.
I hadn’t really given infomercial a lot of thought until she made that comment to me. So I looked up infomercials just get a basic understanding of what they were and just how they sold their products. The first thing I found out this that infomercials and direct marketing is a multi-billion dollar industry. That’s impressive especially with the low priced items that they advertise. I also learned that As Seen on TV, which is probably more attached to more infomercials that I thought, is the largest and most successful in the world. Again impressive.
I watched a couple of infomercials that I had probably seen a few times, but this time with a purpose in mind. I wanted to see how they sold their products and if anything would lead me to my friend’s dark side statement.
Infomercials for the most part sell promote and sell products that are meant to make your life easier and save you time and money in the process. That’s a good thing in my book. What I did notice is that many of the products are similar to ones already on the market. Infomercials sell you products that solve problems whether you knew you had a problem or not. One for the dark side? Perhaps, but not necessarily at 100 percent.
I will admit that some of the products I found were questionable. What I mean by that is that some of the products I came across made me wonder who could ever think of this. Then I realized that there are some creative minds in the world and free enterprise is an economic marvel. I would probably give her this point since some of the product do seem a bit over the top, but then consumers make the last call.
Then my favorite part of the infomercials I watched were the guys promoting and telling all about the product. Free entertainment and free laughs at some of the campy pitches they made. Not to say that camp isn’t a good thing, but I do have to admit that some of the demonstrations of a competitor’s item not working well was a bit over the top. So that could be a strong case of the dark side of infomercials too. Sometimes the demonstrations are not necessarily truth in advertising because they may overdue it just a bit to make their product seem so much more superior to other similar products available at Carol Wright Shop.
“But wait, there’s more” is my favorite line and one that I shout at with the commercial. Bonus offers are good, but sometimes having two of an item when you really need one isn’t quite the bonus claimed, or at least that’s my opinion. I don’t like the separate postage and handling fee either but I understand that I would be getting a bonus item, not free postage. The only dark side of infomercials I could find in this area is the limited time or limited numbers part. I’m pretty sure that limited time and limited quantities are not going to be an issue. I understand that creating urgency is a way of getting someone to buy immediately, but I’m not sure I personally agree with the practice. Then again, I’m not selling my own handy chopper.