Todd’s Take: Have You Ever Bought Anything Off TV That WORKED?
Who doesn't remember Billy Mays the TV pitchman who tried to convince us that our lives were incomplete without a set of Hercules Hooks?
Or, before -- and possibly more famously -- Ron Popeil who introduced us to the smokeless ashtray, the pocket fisherman and the phrase, "set it and forget it"?
He, and his inventions, were immortalized in "Weird" Al Yankovic's mid-80's song bearing his name that included lyrics like:
"I need a vegematic!
I need a pocket fisherman!
I need a handy appliance
That'll scramble an egg while it's still inside its shell!
Operators are standing by.
How does that make you feel?)
I wanna shine some pennies!
I wanna mend some leather!
I wanna Krazy-glue my head to the bottom of a big steel girder!"
The phrase "too good to be true" is almost synonymous with the label "As Seen On TV".
I'm usually pretty skeptical about the claims many of these types of commercials make but I have have broken down and made a few purchases in my life. Most of the stuff was, indeed, crap.
Probably the biggest waste of $14.99 I ever made was getting a "Chef Basket" that my wife would perk-up at every time the ad came on the boob tube. We used it once. ONCE. Fifteen bucks down the tubes and, really, who has time in their day to send it back for a "full refund if not 100% satisfied"?
That said, for a few years I was transfixed by a 30 minute infomercial that used to run on the weekend on what seemed to me to be an endless loop. It was for a product called the WORK GT cordless trimmer. It's basically a battery-powered grass trimmer and edger -- a "Weed Eater" if you will.
Every time that spot aired, I would seriously consider pulling the trigger because I was sick and tired of hauling a 100-foot extension cord around my yard, ripping down flowers, etc. One day, on a trip to a big box hardware store, I saw it sitting there. "Not sold in stores" my butt! It was actually priced cheaper than on the advertisement and they were also throwing in a free leaf blower. I thought, "What the hell? I've always wanted a leaf blower. So, worst-case scenario, I'm out a Benji and a bit wiser."
Fast-forward a number of years later. I still have the edger/trimmer and leaf blower. I absolutely love them and wish I had bought them sooner. They are lightweight and sturdy and can do my 5,000 square foot yard on two batteries fully charged. My son can easily handle them with little effort.
I am not a paid endorser for their product and this is not an ad. Just a friendly consumer report from your 'ol buddy Todd E. Lyons, Esq.
*UPDATE* We just bought this yesterday. I'll let you know what I think after the summer's worth of mowings!
How about you? Have you ever bought something from a TV ad that you would recommend? I'd love to hear from you! Let me know by messaging me on the KATS mobile app.