Move over Billy Maze, there's a new sheriff in town,and he's Vince Offer, pitchman for the Shamwow. Seriously, can you believe the buzz behind the Shamwow (a sponge/cleaner like a synthetic chamois, I believe)? In one day, I heard one radio, one TV news, and two overheard conversations at a conference all mention Shamwow. What's going on?
Clearly facination with infotainment is not new. Ron Popeil was (is?) the master of producing commercials that looked more like talk shows, and he moved a lot of product. Similarly, OxyClean, Orange whatever and host of other cleaning products have been convincingly pitched by Maze, the in your face pitchman with the driving monotone voice.
With Shamwow, Vince brings us in mini-theater. Some say he's kinda creepy with a leering smile, and rapid fire delivery. I personally like the non-sequiturs and meaningless selling points, like "It's from Germany." What's the point--I don't have any firm brand associations (positive ones) with Germany as either very clean or very clever with cleaning products. Cars, yes, but sponges, no. Might as well add Florida to that list too-- bupkis on any positive associations with "It's from Florida." If it's not a mouse, playing NFL football, or hanging off a tree, I don't want it. Sorry Sunshine state.
In any case, it's clear that Shamwow is on people's minds because it's kind of like infotainment. Shot on a budget, the Shamwow can, and does it all....dog, car, bathroom, counter--- Shamwow could probably mop up sub-prime too. For 90 seconds, Vince has us spellbound, and YouTube shows that over 300K viewers haven't gotten enough of Vince on late night cable. It's even spawned a series of highly flattering parody videos to boot.
In a subsequent post, we'll take a look at another Infotainment attempt, Dos Equis Most Interesting Assistant Competition which proves that you can also bomb (in a big way) when trying to mask a pitch as something interesting to watch.