Direct Response TV (DRTV) and Infomercial Marketing

DRTV Basics

DRTV is an all-inclusive term that describes anything marketed directly over television, with prominent display of a toll-free number and/or internet address, asking the consumer to take specific action leading to or making a product sale.

DRTV Consumer Audience

DRTV generally bypasses traditional retail stores to make a product sale directly
with the consumer, but can also be used to drive product sales at retail. DRTV is comprised of three primary marketing subgroups of short form, long form and live home shopping.

What is Direct Response TV Good For?

  • New Product Introduction
  • New Product Testing
  • Product Line Extension
  • Revitalize Existing Product Line
  • Increase Product/Brand Awareness
  • Maximize Media Efficiency
  • Product Differentiation
  • Drive Retail Sales
  • Public Relations
  • Consumer Education for complex products

Types of DRTV

The most common forms of DRTV are the infomercial or long-form television commercial, usually a half hour long, and the spot or short-form television commercial, usually 60, 90 or 120 seconds. Technically, long-form is anything over two minutes and short-form is anything two minutes or less. There has been a recent proliferation of commercial of different lengths and anything from 1 second to 30 minutes is becoming fair game.

Traditionally, most DRTV has focused on direct sales through an 800 number for products without retail sale channels. However, DRTV has become heavily used for other types of response such as lead generation, coupon and other give-away campaigns, multi-step marketing, and distribution of product information and educational materials.

Unlike general advertising, GA, DRTV is an extremely accountable and precise form of advertising where how many people responded as a result of each media placement can be accurately determined, usually within one day. Results can be analyzed accurately and in detail over a vast array of factors including location, time of week, time of day, different creative, different telemarketing vendors, and different telemarketing scripts. Many larger companies concerned with brand awareness and retail have started using DRTV in addition to their traditional GA advertising. This has resulted in analysis that combines GA Nielsen ratings with direct response results giving the best of both the GA and DRTV worlds.

"Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising."

- Mark Twain