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KEEGO HARBOR, MICH.-Demonstrating its commitment to the magnetic therapy segment of the home health product category, Homedics has embarked upon a multimillion dollar public relations and advertising campaign, which is highlighted by an infomercial blitz for three of its products that commence in the fourth quarter and continue into the beginning of 1999.

Homedics introduced a broad line of magnetic therapy products this year, many of which hit retail shelves in late August. They include a 10-piece total body kit, individual wraps, magnetic insoles and bandages. Magnetic bracelets will roll out in December. With the infomercial, the number one player in massagers and magnetic therapy products hopes to promote education about magnets, as well as increase retail exposure.

"We still think there's a lack of awareness in the category," said vice president of sales Mike Matthews. "While customer satisfaction and feedback on the products has been extremely good, we think the marketplace will benefit from increased exposure, while strengthening the brand awareness that Homedics can bring to the segment. We intend to be a market maker in the magnet therapy category."

The first infomercial, which will focus on the company's Magnasoles magnetic insole product, began last week and will run into the first half of 1999. Although Matthews would not reveal expenditures, he did note the cost would be on par with its Back Pleaser infomercial investment, reaching into the multimillions.

"Our whole intention is to drive volume and velocity through our retail partners' stores," Matthews said. "Our historical experience has been that when you have a powerful product and strong media campaign, the potential for huge incremental growth can be significant."

Including the Magnasoles, two additional products will be featured across three separate infomercials. The second spot, to run in mid-November, will focus on the company's 10-piece total body system, and the third, which will begin airing at the end of November, will highlight the soon-to-be-released magnetic bracelets. The infomercials will run on cable networks, including channels like ESPN, America's Health Network, MSNBC, The Travel Channel and The Weather Channel.

Homedics sells its magnetic therapy products to all lines of distribution that carry and promote its other product lines, which include massagers and sensory therapy products. Channels include department stores, mass merchants, drug chains, national variety chains, catalogs and other personal health care specialty stores.

In addition to its infomercial activities, Homedics began its public relations campaign in September with product announcements in print, and has expanded it to include local television and print advertising.
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Title Annotation:Business Brief; Homedics Inc. announces a new public relations and advertising campaign
Author:Eckhouse, Kim
Publication:HFN The Weekly Newspaper for the Home Furnishing Network
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 2, 1998

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