Greg Norman Eyes Golf Infomercial

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To bolster the sales of its One-on-One with Greg Norman personalized golf video, Visual Edge Systems has entered into an agreement with automotive marketer Creative Marketing International for its use in direct mail publicity efforts, expanded its Web presence and announced plans to launch an infomercial.


CMI, West Chicago, IL, conducts marketing campaigns for more than 20,000 dealers in all 50 states. More than 60 percent of those campaigns are consumer-related incentive programs where products are offered to build customer traffic at dealer showrooms, trade shows and ride-and-drive events at race tracks. CMI reaches customers and prospects primarily through direct mail.


The video gives golfers 50 minutes of instruction and analysis of their swings placed side by side with that of golf great Greg Norman. Norman analyzes the swing at eight points and offers corrections to improve each player's golf game.


One-on-One, Boca Raton, FL, which has marketed the video at golf events, conventions and store promotions, said the product fares best as a lead generator when a direct mail appeal focuses beyond simply driving floor traffic.


"The message conveyed to us by One-on-One is that this needs to be more of a public relations event,'' said CMI executive vice president Chuck Randazzo. "For a mass mailing trying to target golf enthusiasts, the results haven't been cost effective.''


CMI will develop a menu of lists which dealers can select based on their marketing budgets and the size of their planned event. The lists will come from dealers' customer and supplier files, country club membership rolls and vehicle registration records. Lists of golf enthusiasts in the dealer's territory could also be rented.


CMI is approaching its clients about the program and plans to unroll it early next year in time for the February National Auto Dealers Association convention in San Francisco.


Early 1999 is also the scheduled release date for a 30-minute infomercial touting the video. Visual Edge will target the infomercial to markets where it has videotaping centers.


"The infomercial format gives us a chance to properly tell our story,'' said CEO Earl Takefman in a prepared statement. "And given the recent successes of several golf equipment infomercials, we are encouraged that all golfers will find our product useful.''


Viewers can order a lesson for themselves or as a gift by calling a toll-free number or visiting the Web site www.theshark.com. A lesson voucher that can be redeemed at one of the company's 19 videotaping centers is then sent in the mail.


Visual Edge's e-commerce capability was added to the site in October. The company also has affiliate relationships to sell the video at sites cbs.sportsline.com and golfweb.com.
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