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Fitness Guru and Bodybuilding Expert Joe Weider Dies at 93

The fitness and bodybuilding communities lost an icon last weekend with the death of Joe Weider. A bodybuilding expert, fitness magazine publisher, and mentor to Arnold Schwarzenegger, Weider died of heart failure at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. He was 93 years old. His age at death is a testament to his understanding of fitness and health. Like Jack Lalanne, who died in 2011 at the age of 96, Weider attributed his longevity to exercise and healthy living, and both men developed lucrative...

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Way Back Wednesday: The Island of Misnamed Toys

Posted by Nicci | Posted in Automotive, Beauty, Household Products, Personal Care, Pets, Way Back Wednesday | Posted on 06-10-2010

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I love Fall.  It is by far my favorite season, and I’ll admit that I start planning Halloween costumes and decorations far in advance of the actual season.  In my neck of the woods, temperatures are often in the 80’s well into October, but I’ll throw on a pot of chili just as a matter of principle.  However, when football season hits, I start dreaming of cooler weather, beautiful foliage, and pumpkins on every doorstep.  I hate to be cold, so when the weather is cool, I love nothing more than snuggling on the couch under a warm blanket.  That’s why this year, I’m going to cave and get a Snuggie.  Oh, how I mocked the Snuggie when it first came out.  I believe I’ve even mocked it here on Way Back Wednesday.  But I borrowed one in a freak snowstorm last winter and fell in love with it.   Now that you can order a Sports Snuggie, it will be the perfect accompaniment to college football, one of the truly great things about Fall.

You know, the idea behind Snuggie is not new.  In fact, there is another blanket with sleeves called the Slanket.  Now, I ask you:  which would you rather cuddle up with?  A Snuggie (insert cozy, warm, cuddly images here) or a Slanket (“Marv!  Call the plumber!  The drain is backed up and there’s slanket all over the floors!”).  The Snuggie has become a smash hit in the world of blankets and in the world of infomercial products in general.  I think it has a lot to do with the name.

A name can make or break a product.  Here I am going to give you a list of some of the most poorly named infomercial products available.  These names are so ill-conceived that I can’t even comprehend the strategy behind them.  In fact, these names are so unspeakably bad that I’m going to refrain from making my usual snarky comments and just let these horrible product names speak for themselves.

  • Catch It:  A litter box product designed to help scoop the kitty business from the litter.  Go ahead.  Say it out loud and think about the product.  You’ll get it.
  • Nads:  An all-natural hair removal product supposedly named for its creator’s daughter.
  • Magic Bullet:  It’s a blender.  Duh.
  • Rack Trap:  I guess this is exactly what it says it is.  It’s a little pocket you put inside your bra.  That’s an even worse name than The Hooter Hider nursing cover.

Last but certainly not least on my horribly named products list is . . . well, I’ll just let you see the infomercial that was really, truly, honest-to-goodness seen on TV:

That’s T-I-D-D-Y.  Can you even imagine the product proposal meeting where that name was chosen?  I mean, what names did they turn down, for the love of Pete?!

It just makes my brain hurt.

Way Back Wednesday: An Homage to Billy Mays

Posted by Nicci | Posted in Cleaning Aids, Household Products, News, Way Back Wednesday | Posted on 30-06-2010

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While this doesn’t go “Way Back,” we here at Seen On TV Express would be remiss if we failed to acknowledge the first anniversary of the death of Billy Mays, one of the leading pitchmen for infomercials and as seen on TV products.  Monday, June 28, 2010, marked one year since the passing of arguably the best television pitchman of this generation.

Billy Mays is perhaps best known for promoting Orange Glo International’s line of cleaning products, which includes Orange Glo, OxiClean, and Kaboom!  After he began selling their products, Orange Glo International saw a marked increase in sales, despite his loud, abrasive technique (which led one Chicago Tribune writer to proclaim the anniversary of his death “ALL CAPS DAY”).  Because of his success, Mays became highly requested as a pitchman for as seen on TV products such as Mighty Putty.  He was so successful that he became founder and CEO of Mays Promotions, Inc.

At the time of his death, Billy Mays was starring with his colleague Andy Sullivan in the Discovery Channel series PitchMen, which chronicled their efforts at direct-response marketing.  Originally titled But Wait . . . There’s More, the series aired a special tribute to Billy Mays after his death.  The series was renewed for a second season with Billy Mays III stepping in for his famous father.

Mays was found dead in his home on June 28, 2009, at the age of 51.  Early speculation tied his sudden death to a head injury Mays suffered during a flight, but the autopsy results concluded his cause of death to be hypertensive heart disease.  Although the initial autopsy found evidence of cocaine in his system, a subsequent autopsy ruled that cocaine was “not a significant contributing factor” in his death.  The release of the toxicology report disappointed Mays’ family and friends.  According to his longtime friend AJ Khubani, CEO of Telebrands,  Mays was “the model of a responsible citizen.”  Pallbearers at his funeral wore khaki pants and blue shirts to mimic the “uniform” Mays was known for wearing during his infomercial sales pitches.

Despite the controversy surrounding his death, Billy Mays will always be remembered for his boisterous personality and energetic sales technique as one of the greatest television pitchmen of our time.

DuraLadder 1000

Posted by AsSeenOnTV | Posted in Household Products, Tools | Posted on 15-10-2009

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I’ve seen similar ladders for several years – even wish I had one on occassion – and now the DuraLadder is available on our site. Both of the home inspectors we used in the past and one realtor I worked with used this type of telescoping ladder. Since that was several years ago, I am sure it wasn’t the DuraLadder brand, but these compact, portable ladders are certainly popular among home professionals (at least the few I was exposed to).

The Dura Ladder marketer is pretty confident that you will be pleased with the quality of their product because they are offering a longer 60 day money back guarantee as opposed to the industry standard 30 day.  They’ll even pay for the return shipping if you choose to return the DuraLadder (something almost unheard of in infomercial offers).