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Everything You Need to Know About Infomercial Media Buying
By Peter Koeppel

Infomercial media buying is a specialized type of media buying. Infomercial time is sold in thirty-minute blocks on both national cable and satellite networks and on local broadcast stations throughout the U.S. Infomercial time is generally available when regular programming goes off the air during the overnight and early morning time periods and during the morning and afternoon on weekends. Infomercial time is priced based on the size and viewership of the station or network and the size of market where the station is located. The most expensive infomercial time periods are on major cable networks on Saturday and Sundays.
 
Since there are thousands of local broadcast stations and hundreds of cable and satellite networks, in order to buy infomercial time successfully it's important to work with a seasoned infomercial media buyer. An experienced infomercial media buyer knows the stations and networks that perform best for certain categories of products targeting particular types of audiences. A knowledgeable infomercial media buyer also knows how to negotiate the most favorable rates for their clients. For example, the rate card for an infomercial time slot might be $1,000, but a savvy infomercial media buyer may know that particular time period is only worth $500 and will be able to negotiate a substantial level of savings for a client's infomercial campaign by utilizing this type of knowledge and expertise.
 
Infomercial Testing
 
Infomercials are typically are tested initially and if the test is successfully then the infomercial campaign is rolled-out. An infomercial media test usually consists of a combination of infomercial airings on smaller national cable and satellite networks and local broadcast stations. An infomercial test typically runs over the course of a week. This allows the infomercial marketer to test a variety of time periods and days of the week to see if any patterns develop in terms of the types of infomercial airings that perform best for a particular infomercial campaign. Sometimes more than one offer is tested to determine which infomercial offer generates the most sales.
 
In a successful infomercial test there are generally several networks and stations that generate a profitable ROI. Infomercial media buyers review this information and then proceed to:
 
  • Buy more infomercial time on the networks and stations that performed well

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  • Buy new infomercial time on networks and stations that are similar to the ones that performed

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  • They should also review their database of where other infomercial campaigns for similar products performed well

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  • Drop infomercial time periods that did not perform

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  • Seek infomercial rate reductions to try to get those stations/networks that are close to performing to a profitable ROI.

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  • Build up the infomercial media spending while maintaining a profitable ROI

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    What to Look for In an Infomercial Media Buying Agency
     
    Infomercial media buying is a highly specialized type of media-buying. General advertising agencies do not have the expertise to buy infomercial time. They are familiar with buying general advertising that is designed to build awareness. In researching an infomercial media buying agency, look for a firm with the following capabilities:
     
  • Make sure you align yourself with an infomercial media-buying expert that has a proven track record buying for other infomercial products in your category of business or for products targeting a similar audience. An infomercial media buyer with this type of knowledge and expertise will end up saving you money and increasing the chances of your infomercial campaign becoming a success.

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  • An infomercial media buying team that is trained to buy the best infomercial time for each campaign.

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  • Specialized software and reporting systems that monitor and track results and links with the telemarketing firm, so that results can be imported daily.

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  • An analytics team that reviews and analyzes the infomercial results in real time and works with the infomercial media buyers to optimize the infomercial campaign based on those results.

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  • Utilizes competitive research that allows them to monitor where competitors are airing their infomercials with the highest level of frequency. Oftentimes infomercial time periods that are being purchased by a competitor with a high level of frequency are paying out and might be places your infomercial media buying agency would consider running your infomercial.

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  • An account service staff that knows how to manage an infomercial campaign from initial testing through roll-out, to taking an infomercial product to retail.

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  • Try to find an infomercial agency that has experience managing infomercial campaigns through both good and bad times.

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  • Look for an infomercial media agency that has connections with the best vendors for key services such as infomercial production, infomercial telemarketing, infomercial fulfillment, infomercial card-processing, infomercial media funding and taking infomercial products to retail.

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    Assembling a seasoned team of infomercial industry veterans is critical to an infomercial campaign's success.
     
    Select a Highly Experienced Infomercial Media Buying Firm
     
    Successful infomercial campaigns can be very profitable, but make sure you do your homework before entering the infomercial business. During the course of a successful infomercial campaign your largest expenditure will be incurred buying infomercial media time, so it's very important to work with a highly experienced and results driven infomercial media buying firm.
     
     
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