Guthy-Renker’s Proactiv solution (the skin care solution for acne treatment) has been running on Australian television networks as an infomercial for several years … and I’d hazard to guess it’s doing very well (given its continuous airing) … even with the whole infomercial basically being an American production.
But tonight I noticed there’s now a new “local” Australian version of the infomercial … all of the testimonials are by Australians … local voices, local addresses … with an Australian television celebrity used predominantly throughout the presentation.
The stories and testimonials, they way they’re told and even the words used, relate exactly to an Australian audience.
And they also use an Australian accented voice over and even mention the product is made in Australia — there’s also wording like “here in Australia” to help ensure it’s obvious the infomercial is Australian.
Even with a few small US sections in the presentation, it’s easy to tell It’s a “fair dinkum” infomercial, still with Proactiv’s professional production values (more about that in a moment).
Whilst I have no evidence or research, my gut feeling says this approach will take sales to another level. Viewers will relate better hearing Australians giving live testimonials — because they’re “local” authentic people, not just one of those “US infomercials” that seem like they’re just lobbed into our market.
To many Australians (or at least the ones I’ve personally polled), the US-produced infomercials can seem overly pushy and scripted/controlled … and there can be a feeling at times that the company who make the product don’t care enough to bother to make a local version of their commercial.
So Proactiv beats this perception.
On the other hand, some of the Australian-produced infomercials simply look amateurish compared to US presentations. While some of the US infomercials look very scripted, and the audience appears overly fake, the Aussie productions look like they were put together on an old PC sitting in someone’s spare bedroom (I won’t name it, but one professional handyman tool comes to mind, as well as a new ad starring the same two blokes).
There’s nothing professional looking about these Australian productions — they’re almost corny … and that’s possibly a strategy (sometimes looking “cheap and cheerful” can be used to promote a “budget” or low cost/high quality value approach — it shows you’re not wasting money on over-the-top marketing). Actually, for the products they promote, I’m sure they work very well. They’re just at a different production level than most US infomercials.
But in Proactiv’s case, the Australian version of their ad is equally well produced as the US one. So that can give the perception that the company cares enough to use local people and still not compromise on the quality of the presentation.
Using testimonials that relate more to your target audience is definitely a proven strategy — for example, if you’re marketing to real estate agents, getting testimonials from other real estate agents is a great way to help persuade your audience.
That’s why I’m sure using Australians in Proactiv’s infomercials will help their sales.