Glossary of Terms

  • Ad-Allowable - The amount of money per order that an advertiser usually allows for the purchase of media.  Ad-allowable is usually a Cost Per Order (CPO) or Cost Per Acquisition (CPA) that makes profitable direct response advertising.
  • Agency Commissions - The advertising agency commission received on media placed on behalf of the client.  The standard agency commission is 15% of the media dollars place. A good direct response advertising agency will consider arrangements that can reduce the standard 15% fee.
  • After Market - The marketing of the product after the DRTV campaign (DR spots or Infomercial) is generating sales.  Using a combination of direct mail, internet e marketing and out-bound telemarketing, an advertiser can generate additional sales or convert leads or inquiries.
  • Award Winning Direct Response TV Commercial – The Direct Marketing Association (DMA) provides annual awards for best direct response television commercials (TV and Radio), as well as best multi-media, integrated marketing campaigns.   The Echo Award and the Henry Hoke Award are presented annually at the DMA convention.
  • Award Winning Infomercial – The ERA or Electronic Retailing Association provides annual awards for best Infomercial, best Infomercial product, and best Infomercial presenter.
  • Back-End Sales - Any sales that is generated from a customer that was developed from a DRTV campaign.  Back-end sales includes continuity programs, re-orders from customers, and any other additional sale as a result of all types of marketing including direct mail, telemarketing, credit card syndication and Direct Videos.
  • Broadcast Stations - Any television broadcast station, local network affiliate or independent.
  • Cable Networks -  Any satellite fed programming service that is picked up by local cable operators.
  • Cash Flow Analysis - Financial projections created specifically for the purposes of analyzing the profit potential of a DRTV campaign.
  • Character Generator - A computer that is used in the post production phases when editing a commercial or Infomercial.
  • Collateral Advertising - Any document or piece of literature that is used as supporting material in a DRTV campaign.
  • Continuity Sales - A marketing strategy that provides the customer with the opportunity to receive the product or service on an “automatic” or regular basis.
  • Compelling Copy - The art of using “selling” words, phrases and selling techniques that create a persuasive, or influential sales presentation that sells the customer.  Uses of Neural Linguistic Programming or Hypnotic Selling techniques is compelling copy.
  • Consumerism - The term used to define the marketing approach based on the “service-based” idea that the “customer is king”.
  • Cost of Product - The actual fixed and hard cost of manufacturing a product and getting it to the fulfillment center.
  • Cost Per Order (CPO) - The actual cost of media dollars spent to generate one order.
  • Cost Per Thousand (CPM) - The amount of advertising money it takes to reach one thousand viewing television households HH (using an audience measuring company’s statistics)
  • Credentialized Endorsements - Any testimonial endorsement from a celebrity or a knowledgeable professional of “highly perceived” credibility.
  • Credit Card Syndication - The marketing strategy used when inserting collateral advertising literature in a credit card bill, usually sharing in the profits.
  • Cross Promotion - All integrated marketing solutions that help reinforce the DRTV campaign and support the product’s sales and brand name awareness.
  • Customer Service - The service provided by the advertiser that keeps in touch with the customer, answers any questions or handles any complaints, including refunds and returns.
  • Direct Mail - The direct marketing and advertising strategy used when the advertiser sends a “direct mail” advertisement solicited or unsolicited to a mailing list of the primary target market via the mail. 
  • Direct Marketing - All forms of direct response advertising that is looking for an immediate, direct sale including DRTV, direct mail, radio and print, the internet, direct videos, catalogs sales and mail order, and network marketing (Multi-Level).
  • Direct Response Television (DRTV) - All forms of direct response advertising on television that solicits an immediate response from the viewer via a telephone number, including DRTV spots and the Infomercial.
  • Direct Video - The video equivalent of a direct mail piece or a re-edit of the Infomercial sent a prospects home (in-home sales presentation).  Direct Videos are compelling electronic sales presentations that deliver a powerful message—carefully leading a prospect, step-by-step, down the path leading to a new customer.
  • DRTV Spots - Short form Direct Response Television Advertising (DRTV), are usually 120, 60 or 30 second commercials.
  • Electronic Goldmine - The media and marketing strategies in which Integrated Marketing Campaigns are utilized to maximize profits and minimize risk.  Integrated  It is also the result of a profitable Integrated Direct Marketing campaign.
  • Electronic Retailing - Like DRTV, electronic retailing is a phrase used by some direct marketers describing the retailing of a product using the television and Internet to sell products.
  • Focus Groups - A group of typical consumers that assist marketers in their research by reviewing, analyzing and focusing on the benefits and weaknesses or any product.  Focus groups are usually engaged when there is an insufficient customer base from which to get this valuable feedback on a product or service.
  • Foreign Sales Distribution - All forms of sales generated in the international marketplace - outside the United States.
  • Free Standing Inserts (FSI) - Print advertising materials that are inserted into a local or national newspaper or magazine.
  • Fulfillment - The process of shipping the product to the customer.  Fulfillment receives the customer order, provides inventory control and tracks the order. 
  • Gross Sales - Usually defined as the total sales minus any shipping and handling costs.
  • Home Shopping Channels - Cable networks and satellite programming services that sell products 24 hours a day.  QVC and Home Shopping Network are two such services.
  • Hypnotic Selling - Copywriting techniques that include certain words, phrases and “style” that is compelling and persuasive.  Hypnotic selling also uses words that can create “future pacing” or a strong “suggestion” that can move a prospect to action now and or in the future.
  • Infomercial - The long form of direct response television advertising.  All successful, profitable and award winning Infomercials have certain proven direct response advertising ingredients.  They are an in-depth electronic sales presentation of a product or service, directed towards a primary target market that has as its primary purpose - generate direct and immediate sales from an 800 telephone number or website by providing an informative and entertaining television program.  The Infomercial is a program length advertisement.  They are usually 28 and one half minutes long, although they can be longer or shorter.
  • Infomercial Marketing Company– A company that provides full service direct response Infomercial production and media placement. Many of the leading Infomercial producers are located in southern California.
  • Integrated Marketing – Integrated Marketing takes full advantage of all marketing vehicles, and every rich vein of the Electronic Goldmine – including short-form direct response television and radio commercials, infomercials, Direct Video DVDs, the Internet, Flash, Streaming Video, and much more.  
  • Integrity Marketing – Marketing for the long term benefit of the customer by providing extra benefits and services with honesty and integrity.
  • Inquires - The consumers who do not buy a product from the initial DRTV campaign but request additional information (free information).
  • Key Selling Messages - A list of the primary selling benefits that can be received from ownership or a product.   The key benefits include the unique selling proposition (USP) of the product and all of it features.  It also includes any marketing strategies that are provided that help sell the product.  i.e. Risk-Free Offer, Limited Supply, Not available in stores, etc.   These benefits and marketing motivators are translated into meaningful advertising sales messages.
  • Knock Off -  A similar product to the one that is being advertised created by the advertiser of the same, in order to ward of competitors or rival “knock-offs”.  Leading Infomercial producers usually develop a knock off product for this purpose.
  • Leads - Potential prospects or inquiries that are generated by a Direct Marketing campaign.
  • Mail Order - The direct marketing strategy that allows customers to buy products through the mail (mail order catalogs or direct mail).
  • Marketing Plan - A written document that provides a comprehensive analysis of the product, its target market and the various marketing opportunities that exist.  The Marketing Plan reveals all of the revenue sources and the marketing strategies that would be employed.  It is the fundamental first step in marketing any product or service in the “Electronic Goldmine”.
  • Marketing Strategies - The specific marketing approaches that can be used in a Direct Marketing campaign.
  • Marketing Wheel - A visual metaphor for a comprehensive marketing plan which identifies the hub of the wheel as the product and all of the spokes referring to the products’ revenue sources and their corresponding marketing strategies.
  • Mark-up Margin - The ratio difference between the cost of the product and the selling price point.  A good DRTV product usually has at least a 5 times mark-up.
  • Media Buying Services - Companies that provide the media buying, management and analyses for DRTV spots or Infomercials and receive an advertising agency commission for purchasing media.  Direct response advertising agencies are also direct response media buyers.
  • Media Ratios (Gross Sales to Media Cost) - The actual ratio of gross sales to media costs.  For example if an advertiser purchased through a media buying service $1000 worth of media and received $2000 in gross sales, the media ratio would be a two to one (2 :1) sales to media cost ratio.
  • Merchant Account - The account that is usually held by an advertiser’s bank that accepts and processes credit cards. 
  • Multi-Pay Offer - The marketing strategy used to increase sales by lowering the price barrier to purchase a product by offering multi-pay (3 easy payments of $29.95).
  • Neural Linguistic Programming (NLP) - The relatively new science and technology that can change ones behavior (program) by changing the way one communicates (language) to him/herself or “presents” information to the brain (neural).  As referred in this book, NLP provides a tool for the DRTV creative team to create an effective sales presentations based on the insights and techniques that are revealed through Neural Linguistic Programming.
  • The Nodding Effect - The term used to define when the key selling elements within an advertisement get a specific affirmative reaction (nod) to the sales presentation being made.  It is working when the viewer agrees with the statements being made in the presentation.
  • One-Step Marketing - The DRTV approach that request for the direct sale of a product or service on the initial airing of such.
  • Orders - An actual cash sale (customer order) from a DRTV campaign.
  • Per Inquiry (PI)  - Usually refers to a form of DRTV whereby the media outlet or a third party (sometimes a media buying service) will air the commercial on a results only basis - the media outlet or third party receives a specific dollar amount Per Inquiry or Per Order. 
  • Power Statements - The cogent statements written as a result of identifying all of the key selling messages.  Power statements are then used as the principle selling ideas for the copywriting or testimonial interviewing.
  • Pre-Production - The preparation phases of the production of the commercial or infomercial. 
  • Production - The actual filming or video taping of the commercials or the Infomercial.  Infomercial and short form direct response television commercial or radio production has become both an art and a science.
  • Producersim - The term used to define the marketing approach based on the “product-based” idea that the “the product is king”—that is, a marketing approach that has to be used to sell existing product without regard to the consumers wants or needs.
  • Post Production - The editing of the commercials or the Infomercial.
  • Primary Target Market - The primary audience the advertisements are directed towards.
  • Private Label - Manufacturing the same product under a different name for another company.
  • Product and Marketing Analysis (PMA) - A sophisticated Product and Marketing Analysis tool that helps to determine the strengths and weaknesses of not only the product but of its current marketing. 
  • Retail - Mass merchandising of a product in retail outlets.
  • Retail Representation - Companies that represent a product to the retail marketplace.
  • Risk Transference Marketing- When a marketing, media or production company is willing to transfer some of the financial risk of marketing a product via Direct Marketing and in exchange be paid a royalty commission on gross sales.
  • Returns - The products that are returned to the advertiser from a DRTV campaign.
  • Revenue Sharing - A form of Risk Transference Marketing, Revenue Sharing takes place when a media outlet or media buyer is willing to fund all media costs and receive a pre-determined percentage of all gross sales in exchange.
  • Royalty Commissions - A percentage of gross sales given to product owners, inventors, Infomercial producers, direct marketers, or celebrities in exchange for services rendered.
  • Satellite Programming - Programming that is received from satellite dishes that are not cable networks.
  • Sell Through Advertising - Another term for “short form” Infomercials that are placed strategically in syndicated “magazine style” or TV talk shows.
  • Situational Analysis - A term referring to the basic marketing research activity when preparing a Marketing Plan.
  • Strategic Positioning - The “image” that the advertiser wants to convey to the public about a company or its product.
  • Sub-licensing - The licensing of a product to another marketing entity, usually overseas.
  • Telemarketing - The in-bound and out-bound telephone operations that are needed to conduct a DRTV campaign. 
  • Testimonials - The actual experience and expressions of  product users are filmed or video taped for use in a DRTV commercial or Infomercial.  Good testimonials will present the key selling messages in their own words.
  • Total Customer Value (TCV) The total value of a customer for the entire relationship between company and customer.
  • Transactional Media - Another term for a long form infomercial that is disguised like a traditional television program or uses a “real” television program to “sell through” its product.
  • Two-Step Marketing - The DRTV approach that requires at least two steps to get a direct sale from a customer.  Usually the first step is the receipt of free information, which is followed up by “after market” techniques to close the sale.
  • Unique Selling Proposition (USP) - The USP is the single most unique selling proposition of a product or service.  It is what makes the product different and more desirable than its competitors.
  • Upsells - Upsells is an in-bound telemarketing strategy that takes place while a new customer is ordering their product (during this phone call only, etc.). This marketing strategy allows the advertiser the opportunity to sell additional product or products to the customer while they are on the telephone.
  • Values And Lifestyles (VALS) - Stanford Research Institute (SRI) created a matrix which identifies and categorizes the values and lifestyles of all people.
  • Wholesale Clubs - The chain of discount stores that offer products that have been seen on TV.  Price Club, Costco, B. J’s, PACE and Sam’s Club, etc..


Electronic Retailing Association (ERA)
2000 N. 14th Street
Suite 300
Arlington, VA 22201

National Infomercial Marketing Association
Contact:  Helene Blake
1202 New York Avenue, N. W., Suite 1000
Washington D. C. 20005
202-962-8342  FAX 202-962-8300

Response TV Magazine
Advanstar Communications
Contact:  Jack Schember, Publisher & Editor
201 East Sandpointe Ave., Suite 600
Santa Ana, CA 92707
714-513-8400  FAX 714-513-8483

Jordan Whitney, Inc.
Contact:  John Kogler
17300 17th Strreet, Suite j-111
Tustin, CA 92680
714-832-2432  FAX 714-832-3053

First Class Marketing
Contact:  Jeffrey Glickman, President
5950 La Place Court, Suite 160
Carlsbad, CA 92008
619-438-2727  FAX 619-438-5134

All Star Media
Contact:  Caswell Forrest, President
220 West Mercer Street, Suite W 508
Seattle, WA 98119
206-284-0604   FAX 206-284-1180

Dan Kennedy
Contact:  Dan Kennedy, President
5818 N. 7th St., Suite 103
Phoenix, AZ 85014
FAX 602-269-3113


“Influence: Science and Practice”
by Robert B. Cialdini
Harper Collins College Publishers, 1993

“How To Master The Art Of Selling”
by Tom Hopkins
Warner Books, 1982

“Ziglar On Selling”
by Zig Ziglar
Ballantine Books, 1991

“See You At The Top”
by Zig Ziglar
Pelican Publishing, 1975

“Tested Advertising Methods”
by John Caples
Reward Books, 1974

“Direct Broadcast Marketing”
“Confessions Of An Advertising Man”
by David Ogilvy

“Unlimited Power”
by Anthony Robbins
Simon & Shuster

“Cash Copy”
by Dr. Jeffrey Lant
JLA Publications, 1989

“Think And Grow Rich”
by Napoleon Hill
Fawcett Crest, 1960

“Secrets Of Closing Sales”
by Charles B. Roth
Prentice-Hall, 1982

“The Winner’s Edge”
by Denis Waitley
Personal Success Institute, 1989

“Trigger Points”
by Michael J. Kami
McGraw Hill, 1988

“The One Minute Sales Person”
by Spencer Johnson, M.D.
Avon Books, 1986

“The Great Quotations”
by George Seldes
Citadel Press, 1983

“Permission Marketing”
by Seth Godin
Simon and Schuster

“The Catalog Of Catalogs”
Edward L. Palder
Woodbine House, 1993

“Call Now 1-800 -  How to Profit from Direct Response Television Advertising”  Copyright 2006  Rodney H. Buchser

Copyright   FMS Direct All Rights Reserved