Vince Offer ShamWow writer and comedian has appeared in late night comedy and has written skits for TV shows. His passion for the entertainment industry came about when he moved to LA and began doing skits on the streets that people found humorous. This acknowledgement gave him meaning to what he was doing. In 1991 he was asked to write 10 skits for the show In Living Color, this gave him the pathway to start his career in comedy writing. Later he went to write skits for his own movie, it was the first movie to debut semen in a skit called Sperm Lake. Most critics did not find this movie comical; it was the political activist that gave this type of comedy a thumbs down. He decided to skip the movie critics and go for a more underground street style promotion that would give the other audiences a thrill they could not deny. So, he created midnight screenings that lasted 10 months, longer than what was a 3-month normal period. Vince Offer ShamWow wanted more, so he aired for the first time a comedy movie on TV and generated sales that led to a distribution with a prominent distributor “Image Entertainment,” which helped Vince get into infomercials.
Vince started by making a “short-form” infomercial, which is generally 2 minutes, and less time than a standard 30 minute infomercial. Short-form infomercials, also known as Direct Response TV ads (DRTV) can be placed between TV shows that air during the day or night. Most long form 30 minute infomercials are placed after a network stations signs off, usually from 2AM-6AM, which very little audience. Therefore, 2 minute DRTV spots are the bread and butter of Vince’s fast pace style, and get a wider audience.
Tracking the results of an infomercial is rather easy compared to some forms of advertising. Infomercials typically include a CTA (call to action) that temps’ viewers to place an immediate order via an 800#, a mailing address or an Internet site. Within a few days, advertisers can determine whether the infomercial is a success. If they find that it was not a success, they can pull the spot quickly to avoid spending any unnecessary money.
Finally, there is an increase in the affordability. Advertisers have a greater flexibility in negotiating favorable advertising rates and have more options in choosing time slots. Consequently, infomercial advertisers stand a better chance of receiving a positive return on their advertising dollar. So, for any other late night infomercial advertiser out there, have a backstory, if possible, show the product in action, use real testimonials, make a specific offer, and give the customer a reason to act now!