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Direct Response Marketing

Retail Outlet: The PedEgg Phenomenon

1 Aug, 2011 By: Peter Aronow Response


Peter Aronow
By Peter Aronow

Over the years, we have all seen numerous changes occur in the direct marketing industry. They have included the introduction of the half-hour infomercial, Web and mobile marketing, and the “As Seen On TV” brand in retail to name just a few. But none has been as profound as the change ushered in by the PedEgg.

Not just another product, the PedEgg broke many barriers. Before the PedEgg the lifecycle for many products had been 5 million units; today it is 10 million or more. Selling more than 30 million units worldwide, the PedEgg has become ubiquitous through DRTV, and it has ushered in a new era for “As Seen On TV” products. Unlike years ago when DR products were shunned, retailers are anxious for “As Seen On TV” products today. These products get high profile placement at most of the country’s largest retailers.

Retail Outlet imageAccording to A.J. Khubani, president of TELEBrands, the PedEgg has shown us all the potential of direct-marketed products. “Sales response has gone up dramatically in DR and retail subsequent to the success of the PedEgg,” he says. “‘As Seen On TV’ has become one of the leading categories at many retailers. At one point, PedEgg was the No. 1 selling SKU at a national drug chain, surpassing Snickers candy bars. It’s pushed retailers to carry more ‘As Seen On TV’ merchandise, give them more shelf space and commit more dollars. It’s a big deal.”

In fact, CVS awarded TELEBrands’ PedEgg an award for contributing the biggest impact to its business in the category of general merchandise consumables.

So what made this little egg such a phenomenon?

Was it the product? The PedEgg was very well designed. Similar products were on the market for years, but none took off like the PedEgg.

Was it the offer? The initial offer was a pretty standard DR offer — buy one, get one free (or BOGO, as many like to call it). And yes, it did include a premium — foot cream. But the DR industry has been using this offer for years. It certainly wasn’t groundbreaking stuff.

Was it the commercial? It appears that the commercial was instrumental in successfully launching the product. Several versions were tested and, in the end, one overshadowed the others.

Was it the demonstration scenes? Possibly — they have garnered a lot of attention. After its TV launch the PedEgg could be seen on daytime and late-night TV. It was spoofed by Jay Leno and “Saturday Night Live,” and talked about on “The View” several times.

Was it TELEBrands? As one of the best marketers in the industry, TELEBrands did what it takes to make the product a success. Its commitment was unyielding. Unlike products before it, the PedEgg has, in addition to generating record-breaking sales, enhanced Khubani’s persona and profile.

Sold worldwide and often copied, the PedEgg set records for sales and demonstrated that a product introduced in DRTV could have the depth and legs of any major product or brand. It helped pave the way for products like ShamWOW, Smooth Away and Snuggie.

The PedEgg was so successful, Revlon copied it. I don’t think I can remember any time that a DR product was copied by a major brand. In fact, many companies offer their version of the PedEgg today — quite a compliment, were it not for many copyright infringements. “The ‘As Seen On TV’ category broke every retail barrier. There are no more verticals. It is the biggest category on the planet — a gold rush for inventors,” comments Mark T. Reyland, executive director of the United Inventors Association of America.

It is clear that the PedEgg changed the DRTV formula. So, what’s next? For any marketer, the PedEgg raised the bar. Despite rising media rates and intense competition, the “As Seen On TV” category has hit the big time. We are all looking for the next PedEgg – a product so well marketed and universally liked that it can reach or exceed PedEgg’s amazing sales records.

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