FoodSaver Infomercial Stays Fresh

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A DRTV campaign promoting a new, simplified version of the FoodSaver kitchen appliance has proved so successful that its maker has decided to continue running the spot indefinitely.

The long-form infomercial for the improved Vac 500 model of the FoodSaver, a home-kitchen device that vacuum-seals food containers to preserve freshness, began airing in May.

Older versions of the FoodSaver have been available by retail. However, appliance manufacturer and marketer Tilia Inc., which markets the FoodSaver, made the new product available via direct sales only, by phone or on the company's Web site.

"That's by design, to help differentiate our direct marketing product," said Linda Graebner, president/CEO of Tilia, San Francisco. "We can give the consumer who wants to order directly from us a benefit over what people can get elsewhere."

Graebner declined to disclose results of the campaign thus far, citing confidentiality, but said Tilia plans to run the infomercial campaign indefinitely.

"This is a long-term commitment," she said. "I think direct marketing will always be a key element of our strategy."

The infomercial targets a mainly female audience ages 35-60. The show is running on national cable and local network affiliates and is one of the top 10 infomercials in the nation in terms of airplay. It is being used to inform consumers about the product's benefits and to promote its ease of use.

Graebner said she expects that the new version of the FoodSaver eventually will move to retail, though she declined to disclose when that might happen.

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