We've all been there. Watching TV, perhaps late at night, when a booming, animated voice snaps you out of your sleep to pay attention to the latest gizmo or gadget that will solve a longstanding annoyance of domestic life.
You watch, skeptical that said device could possibly live up to its boastful claims. But then the over-the-top demonstrations (are you really going to cut aluminum cans with that knife?) begin to win you over.
Then comes the closer: the offer.
In the lingo of the pitchman, this is referred to as “the turn.” This is when the infomercial turns from information to commercial, when a simple sales pitch turns into an offer too good to refuse.
As Seen on TV Inc., a Clearwater-based company that sells products featured in TV pitches, recently outlined the top 10 most-used sayings in infomercials, and how they help convert skepticism to sales:
“Two easy payments of $19.99!”
No matter the product, there is one thing that will deter the purchase of any viewer: a high price tag. By splitting a purchase into easy payments, it is seen as more affordable.
9. “Money back guaranteed!”'¨There's no reason not to buy a product when you are guaranteed to get your money back if you are dissatisfied.
8. “Not available in stores.”'¨Addresses a common excuse: "I'll pick it up next time I go to the store."
7. “Call right now/Act now!/Limited time only!”'¨This common As Seen On TV phrase creates a sense of urgency in the purchase-making decision process.
6. “We'll double the offer.”'¨To sweeten the deal, the pitchman may add more value to the purchase with a free product or two of the same item.
5. “You can do it!”'¨This saying was made popular by fitness guru and pitchman Tony Little. If Tony can do it, so can you.
4. “Operators standing by!”'¨Some infomercials even include a ticking clock, suggesting that once the ad or paid program is over, no one will be able to take an order.
“Set it and forget it.”
This phrase was made popular by Ron "Ronco" Popeil, one of America's most celebrated inventors who first gained acclaim for his role as pitchman in his own product infomercials. Over the past 40 years, his products have pulled in more than $2 billion in sales. "I'm the 'set it and forget it' man," said Ron Popeil, inventor and pitchman of the Ronco Showtime Rotisserie, to AsSeenOnTV.com. "If people see me at an airport, that's what they call me." Popeil first incorporated this saying into the infomercial for his Showtime Rotisserie.
2. “Life's a pitch and then you buy.”'¨One of the most quotable sayings from one of the most acclaimed As Seen On TV pitchmen of all time Billy Mays, most notable for his promotion of OxiClean, Orange Glo, Kaboom, and other cleaning, home and maintenance products.
And last, but certainly not least:
1. Arguably the most popular infomercial tagline - “But wait, there's more!”'¨This phrase was made popular by, once again, Mr. Ron Popeil, the “set it and forget it” man. Although he was not the creator of the phrase, he certainly popularized it.