DRTV, Inserts, Space: Which Products Make Sense?
The first concern to address when prospecting via direct response TV, space ads or inserts, is strategy. Consider two potential approaches:
1. A lead-generating, two-step approach casting a wide net for prospective buyers; or
2. A narrow focus to acquiring buyers by selling “off the page.”
The easier and more universal strategy is the lead-generating approach — getting catalog requests or visits to your Web site. However, only a small proportion of the inquiries that see your catalog or Web site will get to step two and place an order.
Selling directly from DRTV, space or an insert piece is your other option. But that requires a “hero product,” one with universal appeal and desirability akin to the “hero that saves the day.”
Hero products by their very definition are unit best-sellers. Your existing unit best-sellers list is the first place to look for possible heroes. Dig deeper. Look at the best-sellers that appeal specifically to prospects — those products that most often are purchased by first-time buyers. If one or two products stand out as the top unit best-sellers, you have likely found your heroes.
Many catalog brands have no heroes, however. They have lots of strong products, but no one or two of them stand out. In those cases, limit your prospecting in these mediums to lead generation. Or, ask your merchants to find a hero. Study the mediums you want to prospect from and identify characteristics of the most successful products whose ads repeat often. Evaluate price points, offers, premiums, etc. Seek out experts who know the medium to identify the product characteristics required.
And don’t forget: You need to attract and retain buyers to ensure your hero product draws prospects and is representative of your brand. — SA