Placing Inserts in DRTV-Sold Product Shipments
If you’re successfully using inserts or are planning to test inserts for customer acquisition, consider testing inserts in DRTV product shipments. DRTV tends to generate large volumes of customers and thus lots of shipments that can offer insert space.
Because buying from DRTV involves a certain amount of impulsiveness and customers are almost always first-time buyers, DRTV buyer files tend to go stale faster than direct mail or catalog buyer files. As such, inserts are an ideal way to reach these consumers because they allow you to reach them when they are at their hottest.
The challenge for insert marketers is how to maximize response from DRTV buyers. The key is to understand the dynamics of DRTV and the offer to which the buyers responded. DRTV is a mix of short-form, two-minute spots and long-form, 30-minute infomercials. Consumers who respond to short-form spots tend to purchase on impulse, and respond to low-priced ($20 to $25) or lead generation offers. Infomercial product buyers tend to take more time considering their purchases, which generally have price points of $40 or higher.
Ideally, your insert offer should mimic the price point and simplicity of the DRTV offer to which the buyer responded. If you target DRTV buyers who’ve purchased a $20 kitchen gadget, response to your insert offer likely will be infinitely higher if you offer a $25 item rather than a $400 item. If, however, an insert program reaches desirable prospects, but your price point is significantly higher than their initial purchase, try breaking your product price into payments similar to the initial purchase point of $20, or use an insert as a lead generator.
Price points can vary for infomercial offers, but the same principal applies. You will have greater success if your price point isn’t dramatically different from the DRTV offer. For purchases over $50, DRTV marketers tend to offer installment plans to make price points palatable. Consider adopting the same pricing strategy for your insert offer. When the buyer phones your call center or visits your Web site to make the purchase, you will have the opportunity to convert them to a single payment.
Just like inserts in catalog product shipments, your product offering should make sense in light of the product the DRTV buyer purchased and the demographics of that buyer. Note that most DRTV buyer files are by their very nature somewhat more mass market than catalog buyer files because TV stations are not as narrow-band as selecting lists from databases. Copy and graphics need to recognize this and shouldn’t focus on too narrow a slice of your potential buyer audience, lest you lose opportunity for potential sales.
So, consider DRTV product shipments as a viable insert opportunity. There are lots of them, and there is lots of room for success if you serve up the right offer and presentation.
Shari Altman is president of Altman Dedicated Direct, a direct marketing consultancy specializing in acquisition, continuity, DRTV and loyalty marketing. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (336) 969-9538.