I haven’t done a post on offline marketing in a while… or much of any posts since I’ve been working and traveling too much. However, I did get this idea because of traveling.

Look at this ad:


If you’ve ever skimmed through the SkyMall in most US domestic flights, this is probably the only product you remember. In fact, it looks so stupid, it attracts attention. This is why it works:

  • Attention-grabbing — There aren’t many unprofessional looking product-photos in the magazine, but this one is. That means: it stands out and it gets eye balls to look at it. You need those folks to at least glance at your ad to even have a chance at selling to them. Attention-getting elements in any media buy are vital.
  • Demographics — Guess what? I have absolutely no idea the demos SkyMall distributes to, but I do know the frame of mind the people have when reading the magazine. They probably have nothing better to do than to look at ads. They’re bored and probably wouldn’t mind taking a nap.
  • Relevance — Their target audience goes on airplanes occasionally and would like to sleep.
  • Product — I haven’t seen this product in stores. It’s niche. Low competition.
  • Copy — Not much ad copy is necessary, but the headline gets the product’s point across. The rest of the copy or description is used to build credibility with media mentions.

There you have it: ridiculous-looking sells. I’m not sure how much money this product is making, but any direct response campaign that lasts for years with large distribution — is banking hard.

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6 thoughts on “Media Buying: How an Old-Fashioned Ad Made Years Ago is Still Banking Hard

  1. If you listen to the “Jim Rome Show” you have heard of this thing. How outlandish does something have to be to get play on the biggest sports radio show in the world? We’ve all seen lots of ads in Skymall but this one strikes that chord that makes you say, What in the world! Love it!

  2. Good post,
    It reminded me of years ago when I was running a pet store.
    When I chose items to stock the shelves with I learned to mix in some of the really terrible and most god-awful looking products. If something came in several colors, it was invariably the tackiest ones that sold the best.

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