Make Your YouTube Ads Skip Proof

 

Are your YouTube ads being skipped at 6 seconds?

I am constantly waiting for the 6 second mark so I can hit the “skip” button.  Anyone reading this is no different.

I found this video – so you may want to click on the link above.  It’s a 3:30 video by a Youtuber about ads being skipped on Youtube. Once you open it, make note of the time code when you press skip.  I skipped at :20, and that seemed like forever.

I watch YouTube.  It’s my go-to-platform for everything from meditation and spiritual insight to how to fix the outdoor lights or dishwasher.   I admit, I do love Youtube for all different reasons.  Youtube’s CPC (cost-per-click) ad model is great for any advertiser and the rev share model for YouTubers/ and channel owners is a win win.   What I don’t like are bad ads, and lots of them.

In fact, YouTube has a video service for about $250.00 where YouTube sends a small crew to your home or business to shoot a commercial for you.  Maybe you can find out more here,  I don’t know much, but from what  I’ve seen these videos are nicely produced using a script template,  but are missing the key fundamentals of an engaging direct response ad for your business.

As a direct response television writer and producer for 20 years the basic rules ohave never changed.  The biggest rule is to hit the audience with a BIG BOLD and ubiquitous problem in the first 6 seconds, followed by a life changing solution (product or service) which is then backed-up by a great value/offer.

Ask yourself, what will make your customer sit-up, listen and take action?  Better yet, why not  test different scenarios of the opening first 6 seconds and see what happens.

Here are examples of opening lines in actual commercials.  Two of which grossed  over 40 million dollars in sales.   Can you guess which two?   

  1. SAY IT IN 6 SECONDS:  State the problem.   Offer the solution immediately in the following 6 seconds.  Use  “introducing” the product/service” followed by “here’s why” or “here’s how it works.”
  2. DON’T USE GRAPHICS without a powerful voice over, music and sound-affects  and vice versa.  Graphics alone WILL NOT turn heads to look at a screen, audio does.
  3. HERE’S WHY | INTRODUCING | HERE’S HOW IT WORKS:  The product or service’s USP – unique selling proposition– is its features and benefits.  Example:  A ball with a handle.  Feature:  handle.  Benefit:  it’s easy to carry, won’t roll away and hangs on a hook so it doesn’t get in the way.  Use the rule of 3.
  4. A GREAT OFFER CAN GO FIRST:  In the example above of  “If you could look flawless for $19.99, would you?”  It was the first time a price/offer appeared at the top of the DRTV spot.  Adding value through-out the spot making the price of $19.99  irresistible once to the CTA.
  5. FREE OFFERS:  Nothing is free.  Everyone knows this including the FTC.  It’s a tactic, use it wisely.
  6. TESTIMONIALS:  Use testimonials only when they are genuine and good on camera.  A happy customer that’s bad on camera, hurts more than it helps.
  7.  PROFESSIONALLY PRODUCED:  It doesn’t matter, if you follow the fundamental rules of engagement.

All great viral videos have one thing in common, a powerful first 6 seconds.

I Celebrated Rosh Hashanah on Christian Broadcasting – Who Knew?

 

Last night was the eve of the jewish new year Rosh Hashanah commencing 10 days of introspection and then culminates with a day of atonement and fasting, Yum Kippur.

During this time Jews, like me, are able to secure their place in G-D’s “book” by making amends for past year, “God willing” you get a place in G-D’s book.  Yes, he keeps a list of who stays and who leaves this physical world in the coming year.  It’s kind of like Santa’s but the gift is life.

G-D’s “list” or “book” has nothing to do with if you were naughty or nice but if you are able to forgive and be forgiven – to recognize your sins and your good deeds.  Mostly, I think, it have gratitude for another chance.

Since the Hebrew calendar follows the Moon (not the sun), the first night of Rosh Hashanah falls appropriately on the evening of the New Moon in the 7th month.   The shofar is blown, a trumpet like sound from a rams horn, that reaches the heavens and allows joy to rain upon all.   We then have 10 days to recognize and apologize for our sins, until Yum Kippur when, in so many words, they are purged and we start anew by fasting.

I digress.

So, today I couldn’t make it to services, but I could make it to Youtube where I discovered the most glorious service on CBN.  YES, the Christian Broadcasting Network with Pastor Paul Wilber.  I was not only shocked by the amount of people, but by the amount of preparation, the dancers, musicians, and joy that must have gone into this remarkable service for a jewish holiday by christians.

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It was the most glorious and beautiful service I have ever witnessed.  I told my husband (an Italian catholic) that I want to be there in Virginia Beach next year because I must experience it live.  It not only made me break-out in dance but cry with joy as well.

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The love and acceptance by the Christian community for a jewish holiday, well it moved me more than a few times.  It was the purest injection of joy into my soul that I’ve had in a very long time.  There was no division of race or religion, there was no hate, there was just pure love and joy – it didn’t matter in whose name.

Shana Tovah to all and to all a good year!

We need a modern day Robin Hood to save us from Jeff Bezos.

Amazon shipped 5 billion packages worldwide in 2017.   Overcharging in fees, due to errors in Amazon’s FBA methods of intake may be putting an additional 500 million dollars in Bezos’ pocket each year.   Here’s why.

As a brand seller on Amazon I have uncovered fees incorrectly being increased without notice due to an error that was either done by an intake fulfillment center employee who can’t measure properly, or by unauthorized contributions to listings.

Just imagine if 10% of the 5 billion packages shipped in 2017 where erroneously overcharged in FBA and listing fees.  That’s $500 million dollars of Amazon Seller’s money that they make incredibly difficult to get back.

I liken this tactic to  “Money Back Guarantees” that intentionally make it difficult to get a refund.  We’ve all seen them.  It all sounds great until you try to get your money back and it’s impossible to reach customer service for a return authorization number and address to return the goods.   As a Registered Brand on Amazon we are suppose to be able to control our listings, but that is far from what I experience for the past 4 years.  And when an error is discovered, well Amazon makes it as difficult as possible to recoup those lost fees.

One of the companies I own is EGPRO, LLC.  We have a design patent in 5 countries and do not give authorization for any company to distribute our product, not even Amazon Catalog (retail division).   In order to purchase our items you can shop at our website  or purchase on Amazon.com.  Since 2014 we have paid over $800,000 in fees to Amazon.  (This does not include sponsored terms on the ad platform.)  This doesn’t bother me when the fees are fair and correct.

But, here’s what happens.

Today, Sunday, the day before Labor Day Weekend 2018 I wanted to adjust the price (this is the only thing I can adjust without permission) and I find that once again, one of our listings is being incorrectly charged fees to the tune of $3.00 over.  As you can see by the ad, I drive traffic to Amazon as I know this is where consumer will shop – but my Labor Day campaign in now in the “toilet” because I can not afford to put it on sale due to the error in the fees.

As I pulled up my inventory management tool on Seller Central, I notice my best seller (White) as having a sudden increase in fees to $14.24, where as the other SKUS are $10.44 and $10.82.  As you can see they are the same except for color, thus the fees should be exactly the same, but they never are.easyGopro Go time just got easier Brand.jpg

 

EGPRO, LLC has had Brand Registry for 3.5 years.  As a small business and patent owner with a registered trademark, we are able to request Brand Registry so that we can (so Amazon says) “control” our brand on Amazon.  There are certain benefits that come with this for sure – but we have had nothing but problems with our listings having erroneous  “contributions by others”  which is code for  “Amazon Retail Division is controlling your listings, not you”.

In fact, since July 2018 I have had 2 cases open for incorrect category listings and control by Amazon, only to receive every 2 days an email stating:   “We’re working on it”.  In other words, once I report the measurements as being incorrect it will take weeks to fix, and meanwhile they continue to over charge and will refund only if we submit a list of all the orders that we were overcharged.  Instead of taking the responsibility for the error they put it back on to us.

If this is happening to us, it is happening to hundreds, if not millions of sellers worldwide.  Isn’t it time we banned together and found our Robin Hood to take back what is rightfully ours from Jeff Bezos, the riches man in the world? 

Happy Labor Day!

September 18, 2018

Amazon has since adjusted the fees to be nearly correct, but my listings are still being controlled by “other contributions”.   This seems like a never ending problem so perhaps I’ll just give it rest.  Amazon has not given me a remedy to be reimbursed for the $3.00 a unit sold with the incorrect fees, yet.  Can you imagine how much money Jeff Bezos makes if he just takes .10 cents of each item shipped each day because the fees are applied incorrectly?  Thanks a lot of lunch money Mr. Bezos, perhaps you should put our “fees” into a charity called “Amazon Sellers Foundation”.  Just say’n.

 

 

Two Queens – Infomercial that is..!

After 15 years of friendship who would have thought the two “Infomercial Queens” with the same name, spelled exactly the same, would be on a radio show that reaches around the world?   Wendi Rogers has done it all and she is on the phone today for 50 minutes!  Wendi and I go way back that’s for sure.  But, we also share very similar life’s experiences.  In fact, we were both broke – both emotionally and financially – back in 1998 when we first met.  It’s often said that the infomercial business is tainted, I argue that it went through growing pains, but Wendi sees it differently.  Take a trip back in time to the “Wild West ” days of the infomercials when MER’s where through the roof, greed was not necessarily “good” and lives were changed forever.  Wendi Rogers Geisenger is married to Adam {Jay} Geisenger who was on C Spot Talk back in 2012 and together created some really fun and profitable campaigns.  Google Doc Bottom’s A Spray and the infamous “Pocket Chair.”  
 
Listen, download and subscribe as a podcast on iTunes:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/two-queens-infomercial-that/id513363396?i=252148122&mt=2

You Smell so Good…for a Girl!

If that show title doesn’t get you to download this episode, nothing will!  Today Peter and I celebrate The C Spot’s first 3 Peat!   Talent agent Blair Taylor of Commercial Talent Agency is in-studio for the 3rd in 2 years.  Why so many guest appearances?  Well, besides being the funniest and most entertaining person I know, Blair is the “Huber” TV Host agent.  Imagine this…he has placed and negotiated deals over  900 infomercials.  But it’s not just about infomercials, Blair placed Bick in the hilarious AT&T “It’s not complicated” commercials – which lead to SNL.  Isaiah Mustafa AKA the Old Spice guy which lead to, hmmm not sure what.  This episode, as well as last week’s with Darla Haun (just seen on Jay Leno (represented by Blair), will give you a completely new POV and  R.E.S.P.E.C.T., for the special talent it takes to sell on TV.  Blair@commercialtalentagency.comBTW Super hilarious show!  

Subscribe to my podcast or just listen to the show here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/january-23-2014/id513363396?i=241374772&mt=2

Just a Genious, Really!

If you have ever wondered what it takes to be the the Senior Executive Producer for Murad Skin Care, wonder no more! Marc Kravets has accomplished the following: Launched and managed $100M automotive aftermarket brands via DRTV; managed $200M+ fitness brands via DRTV. Brands like Lifelock and CitiBank, Bettertrades and Billy’s Bootcamp/Tae Bo, CarMD, The Firm, Nu Wave Oven and StopRepairBills.com. We discuss Social, Youtube, Viral, CRM, and so much more. Find out what Marc’s most craziest moment in his 20 years of producing was, it has to do with battleships, helicopters and aerobics! Murad is one of the leading brands in skincare, located in El Segundo, California. We are all looking forward to see what’s coming next with Marc leading production. Kravets was formerly with EuroRSCG/Havas Edge’s direct response division for 8 years. Follow Marc on Twitter @kravetsm and me @cspotalk @cdirectresponse. Thanks for listening!

It’s not Myth – They really do exist!

How many people fit in the studio at one time?  You can read their accomplishments and bios below, or take the easy way out – JUST LISTEN TO THE SHOW!!!!

Here’s the link to listen to/or download the show:  http://ow.ly/qpQHo

The ARCHEUS AGENCY is a media production + marketing firm that develops and produces programming for both television and digital media that incorporates innovative revenue streams through expanding brands and increasing sales of products/services sold directly to viewers.

Cindi Anderson, PhD

An executive at several of the premier direct response television companies over the last two decades, Cindi Anderson is now a successful independent strategist, writer and creative producer in both the advertising and direct marketing industries. Her recent successes include the launch of Murad’s Resurgence skincare line for Launch DRTV and Stiefel’s Max Clarity acne line for Euro RSCG. Most recently, she has been collaborating with Patrick Raymond of Raymond Entertainment Direct on many successful international product launches, including The Torpedo kitchen appliance, Push-Up Pump fitness hit for Emson and Miracle Skin Transformer beauty sensation for Atlantic Coast Media Group.

Susan Agostinelli has a vast range of experience in the TV and filmmaking community, including finding and building new talent in to award winners and turning companies in to overnight successes. Her journey began at MTV on legendary shows Club MTV and “Unplugged”, then as Jr. Writer working on notable hits like “Sex In The 90s”.  Gravitating towards warmer climate, Susan left NYC for LA and the world of post-production in music videos and commercials at Propaganda Films.  Here she found herself in dark edit bays for months with likes of legendary directors Michael Bay, David Fincher, Nigel Dick, Mark Romanek and more… it was then that she learned to edit and she cut the first Pearl Jam video.

Cameron Casey studied Industrial Design, Graphic Design and Media Communications in San Francisco and began directing commercials and music videos while in college. Moving to Hollywood he forged a successful career in the entertainment industry that has spanned television, film and digital media. After almost 20 years in the business Cameron brings a unique skill-set as executive producer and director with experience in all aspects of direct response, digital content, broadcast, film, and commercial production. Cameron has worked with top brands across the US and internationally for Max Factor, Estee Lauder, Chanel, Unilever, P+G, Panasonic, Apple, Mercedes and Jaguar. His work with celebrities is vast, helming hundreds of hit music videos for Missy Elliot, Ice Cube, Warren G, Jay Z, Stevie Wonder, Phil Collins, Tears for Fears, Goo Goo Dolls, LL Cool J, Aretha Franklin, Chaka Khan, Mel C,

Gary Pilla

Gary studied Advertising and Visual Communications at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. An imaginative kid at heart, Gary created licensed products for toy lines such as Stretch Armstrong and The Nine Lives of Claw while still in college.  After graduation he quickly became an agent of change in Advertising, preaching connecting with consumers at a deeper, more emotional level.  Gary helped create groundbreaking campaigns for clients like Mazda (Zoom-Zoom), Expedia, Sherwin Williams, Coleman and Kay Jewelers. Then he hit the Direct Response market hard while managing the creative for ADT.  ADT hit record sales for new security installs and had their best year ever with the launch of ADT Pulse.

Gary’s unique ability to combine innovative brand strategies with direct response fundamentals helped created some of the most successful DRTV campaigns in recent history.  Nobody has led more award-winning DRTV campaigns than Gary since 2011 — winning 12 Moxie Awards over that stretch.  But it’s not really about the awards, is it?  Campaigns for Icon Health and Fitness launched at an 8 to 1 ratio, while campaigns for the Microsoft Store launched at a staggering 17 to 1 and, even hit an astounding 56 to 1 ratio over Black-Friday weekend.

A tale of 3 charities…

As I sat in the opulent offices of the cavernous LATalkRadio studios, I looked across at the empty chair where Wendi Cooper usually sits, and shouted,”Wendiiiiii. Can you hear meeee?” But alas, she could not hear me, Peter Soby, because she was in Las Vegas at the ERA D2C 2013 Convention. So I got to be Wendi Cooper this week. And since I was Wendi Cooper, I brought Kathy Christopherson in to be my me (Since I am usually Wendi’s sidekick)! And it’s confusing banter just like that that got the show started off this week!
But in all seriousness, I had a great time filling in for Wendi. And Kathy did an amazing job filling in for me! When Wendi handed me the keys to the show, I decided that I wanted to do a show spotlighting 3 Los Angeles-based charities. First off, Fritz Coleman, the extraordinary weatherman from NBC4, called in, and he talked about the charity called, Valley Interfaith Council (VIC).
Next, we got a phone call from Sylvie De Toledo, the Founder of Grandparents as Parents (GAP). Sylvie is an amazing woman and she talked about the organization and also the fact that she is one of the Top 25 nominees in the CNN Heroes showcase. And this is out of over 10,000 individuals and organizations nominated!
Finally, Kathy spoke on behalf of the amazingly compassionate charity called Dirty Dog Squad, an animal rescue organization.
We certainly missed Wendi this week and I look forward to having her back next week and hearing all about her adventures at the Direct 2 Consumer Convention. But today was a really nice breather to spotlight some amazing individuals and charities doing some incredible things for people and animals! Stay tuned next week for Wendi and more direct response!
Below are the websites of all the charities mentioned in the show. You should go to each of them and learn something about them and perhaps donate your time or money. Thanks for listening!
Valley Interfaith Council (VIC) www.VIC-LA.org
Grandparents as Parents (GAP) www.grandparentsasparents.org
Dirty Dog Squad www.dirtydogsquad.org
Project Don’t Go Back (PDGB) www.PDGB.org – I did a “shout out” at the end of the show for this organization. They are amazing as well. They are doing outreach for men who live in halfway houses who have been released from prison and jail and offer them aide and support in their transition back to the outside world. Be sure to check them out.
You can listen to the show or download the show and listen later at the following links:

Donna Has An Offer For You…

Donna Krech, Founder and CEO of Donna Krech & Co., has created an empire devoted to equipping and inspiring female professionals around the world.  With more than 100,000 members in her online and offline programs, and more than 200 physical locations using her systems for success.  Donna shares her personal story of coming from absolutely nothing to building empires.  GO TO www.PurposeLedProfit.com – and GET A FREE product to determine your purpose and how to build your income from your purpose.  But wait there’s more!  Donna is a professional speaker, she has shared the stage with such well-known speakers such as Jim Rohn, Brian Tracy, Zig Ziglar, Vince Lombardi Jr., Bob Proctor, Loral Langemeire and….drum roll – Wendi Cooper!   Sponsored by www.DirectAvenue.com  – where brand meets direct response.

 

Listen/Download this show at my iTunes Podcast page:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/donna-krech-founder-ceo-donna/id513363396?i=167627039&mt=2

RED is the new color of money!

Saturday mornings on your local stations is filled with infomercials – in fact there are entire stations dedicated to only airing 30 minute infomercials.  Patrick Raymond, Owner, Writer, Executive DR Strategist (I left out the TV as I had that expression) of Raymond Entertainment Direct, {RED} brings 21 years as a creative professional to the table and the microphone.  Today we discuss how direct response creative agencies (now being called branded entertainment) are very different than general market agencies. We’ve been doing performance based marketing for 20 years – so our clients (RED’s and CSRP’s) rely on us for much more than to produce a commercial.  Learn what it involves and how deep the client relationship runs.  Today we dish about using celebrities; what Kathy Ireland is up to; secrets to great testimonials, and much much more.  (You saw that one coming!)  I love when I have one of my close colleagues (and competition) on the show – it’s just so much fun to talk shop and leave some great direct response marketing tips for everyone to enjoy!  The C Spot is unplugged conversation – we just let it flow.  Enjoy the Show!

Listen to the show here:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/september-5-2013/id513363396?i=165746713&mt=2