Perfecting the Pitch – Pitch Tips learned from Billy Mays

Pitch Man Billy Mays

Pitch Man Billy Mays

Long before the news of Billy Mays‘ death, I was planning on writing a Pitchmen post.  It is one of my favorite shows and there are many great lessons to learn from master pitch men Billy Mays and Anthony Sullivan.  Billy Mays was found dead in his home on Sunday June 28th.  An autopsy is currently underway, but a heart attack is the suspected cause of his untimely death.

Many people claim to dislike infomercials, but when done well they are gripping, exciting and have at home viewers running to the phone to order a product they didn’t know they needed.

After years of working boardwalks and home shows, Billy Mays became famous after meeting the founder of Orange Glo International, a manufacturer of cleaning products.  Mays was hired to promote their various cleaners, including OxiClean, Orange Clean, and Orange Glo.  According to Inc. Magazine, this success propelled the company into the top 10 privately owned companies from 1999 to 2001.

Billy Mays had the ability to grab your attention and move you to action, watching him in action shows that there is a lot to learn about delivering a high impact pitch!

What makes Mays’ pitch so effective?

  • A Billy Mays pitch is packed with nonstop energy – you don’t have to raise your voice to show passion and excitement!
  • He knows the product inside and out, and can demonstrate the features & benefits in seconds – nothing sells your idea or product like a demo!
  • Billy Mays presents with directness and authority – TV time is expensive and your audience’s time is valuable.  Get to the point and then reiterate takeaways.  Stay focused on key concepts to make sure the audience gets the message.

“As Seen on TV” products solve common problems that affect many people, but chances are your products and services can also help solve problems that people didn’t know they had!  Follow these tips and you are sure to keep your audience awake and engaged!

Moved to Order

My first experience with ordering from TV was the TimeLife Sounds of the 80′s collection. It was college, it was a have to have item for the party circuit!  I went on to order Pure Moods and various other compilation cd’s, but didn’t stop there! I am also the proud owner of the Big City Silder Station, the PedEgg and the Snuggie.

Have you ever purchased an “As Seen on TV” product, from Billy Mays or another pitchman?  What moved to buy from an infomercial?  In honor of Billy Mays, please share your favorite TV pitches and let us know about some cool products that you ordered from TV!

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3 Responses to Perfecting the Pitch – Pitch Tips learned from Billy Mays

  1. I used to change the channel on infomercials until I saw Billy Mays do OxiClean. He was so captivating, it was unbelievable. My husband and I are big fans of Pitchmen, too. Sully and Billy were not only a riot to watch, they were like a non-stop marketing lesson!

  2. Amy says:

    Hi Jessica,
    Captivating is the perfect word for Billy! He and Sully were a great pair, I loved their chemistry.
    I will actually admit that sometimes I took notes while watching the show, they gave great tips for sales & marketers!

  3. Nile says:

    Billy Mays was a person that was great. Pitchman was a way to extend the world of marketing to those who had no clue to the extent of it. I remember watching some of his infomercials as a teen and he was, as Jessica said… captivating. As a teen, I had no money, but I was always quick to tell my father that he should buy what Billy was selling…lol.

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