Can Opener Carves DRTV Success, May Outshine Flashlight

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Advanced Results Marketing projects a second year of direct response television success with Daka Design Ltd. through its new One Touch Can Opener.

The direct response agency last year promoted Daka's Faraday flashlight and produced $35 million in sales from its short-form DRTV campaign. This year, One Touch already is grossing 25 percent more than Faraday did at this point in the campaign.

"Everyone in America can use a can opener, just like everyone in America can use a flashlight," said Victor Grillo, CEO of Advanced Results, Marlboro, MA.

One Touch's appeal is that it cuts through a lid without applying hand pressure. It is battery operated and automatically circles the edge of a can. The Faraday flashlight also is an item with a common application but it requires no battery. Instead, it operates on the Faraday Principle, using magnets and motion to generate light.

Advanced Results has a one-minute and a two-minute spot for One Touch. The ad demonstrates the can opener and contrasts it to conventional hand-held can openers. The ads vary from early morning to late night and can be seen on a mix of networks including NBC, ABC, Lifetime, Animal Planet and TV Guide. A test was done in March, with full release in April.

The success of the Faraday flashlight inspired Advanced Results to rearrange its DRTV product criteria. Previously it sought products that were unique, demonstrable and appealing. Based on response to the flashlight, new importance is placed on a product's universal appeal.

"As of the flashlight, we decided we would not take on a product that did not have a home in every home," Mr. Grillo said. "The items we go forward with must be utilitarian."

Based in Hong Kong, Daka makes products in the lifestyle, sports/leisure and marine electronics categories. Its major markets are North America, Europe, Japan and the home base.

DRTV researcher Jordan Whitney Inc.'s short-form retail product survey ranked One Touch in sixth place for top TV retail sales two weeks after the ad first aired.

"You have a longer life span with utilitarian products," Mr. Grillo said. "There is more potential through sustainability in the market. I think the whole industry is going this way."

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