Doug Garnett’s Blog


Turn a Shelf Potato Into a Retail Superstar

For years I’ve written about a type of retail product that my agency calls a “shelf potato“. It’s a well loved product — loved by the manufacturer, loved by the retail buyer who brought it in, and loved by the consumers who buy it. Except, the product mostly lounges on the shelf instead of rushing out the door.

It doesn’t need to be this way. Communication can bring shelf potatoes alive – especially communication with direct response television. (That’s DRTV – short-form and long form.)

There are many important examples of shelf potato success. Grills identical to the Foreman grill sat on shelves for nearly 20 years before that infomercial brought them to life. The Drill Doctor drill bit sharpener was languishing on retail shelves until our half hour made them into a superstar and a brand. The Kreg Jig sold well to cabinet shops, but came alive at retail once a half hour infomercial showed homeowners what they could do with it.

For more, read my article with tips for finding those shelf potatoes that communication can bring alive. The article was published by Home Channel News on May 5, 2010 as part of their Hardware Show Daily at the National Hardware Show.

Maybe your shelf potatoes can come to life if you put them on the right program for retail fitness.

Copyright 2010 – Doug Garnett

Categories:   Communication, Direct Response, DR Television, Hardware & Tools, Technology Advertising, TV & Video