You ever see those loud and flashy commercials on TV touting the newest revolutionary piece of fitness equipment? I know you have…we all have, and for 4 Nay! 3 easy payments of 39.95 (plus shipping and handling) you can have a miracle product mailed to you.
As a publicly listed trainer and coach I get plenty of recruitment emails to join the team or try out all sorts of “mind blowing life changing” pieces of equipment. It doesn’t matter if they are celebrity backed, developed by NASA engineers, better than equipment XYZ or any other marketing angle they try to exaggerate; they all say and do the same thing when they display their equipment to the general public.
Depending on the time of day they have anywhere from 30 seconds to a few minutes to grab your attention, pull at your heart strings, take your eyes from the TV and get you reaching into your wallet. Here is how they do it…every time.
1.Using Sculpted Fitness Models
Spoiler alert! The people using the equipment in the commercial did not get their bodies from using that new piece of equipment prior to the commercial. Not even a little bit.
Everyone involved with forming the content and structure of the commercial knows that the most popular goal/trend in fitness is to be “lean and tone” for women & “lean and muscular” for men. So, it is in their best interest to acquire appropriate visual displays of what they know people hope to achieve.
They know when you see these bodies associated with their equipment you will piece together (in your own mind) that using their equipment gets you that body. Every movement gets a glistening, tanned close up body shot of muscles flexing, and sweat dripping to show hard hard they are working. It doesn’t matter if the piece of equipment is made for total body use, or for one specific body part like the chest or butt. The harsh reality is these fitness models spent hours upon hours in regular gyms using already existing basic equipment(like a dumbbell) to get the bodies that allowed them the ability to book this commercial. Nobody will tell you that valuable bit of info in the infomercial. They might even try to convince you further by including a snippet of footage that shows the fitness model “actually working out”, saying how awesome it feels, telling the camera they wish they had this equipment all along, or how they will include it into their regular training. It’s still not true, and was all staged to try and hook you in a little bit deeper.
Don’t blame the fitness models for having a good enough body to book the shoot, or the spokesperson for capitalising on the new opportunities their manager/publicist puts in front of them. Just don’t believe the bodies on the screen are expected results from the product.
2.One Tool To Solve All Your Problems
They won’t just solve your fitness problems. They will solve EVERYONE’S fitness problems regardless of what they are. It doesn’t matter if they contradict themselves in order to solve multiple problems. Like when they tell guys it will build big chiseled muscles, and then tell ladies it won’t bulk them up, but create long lean muscles instead. Or when they say it provides double resistance in both directions, works to add resistance for advanced people, but at the same time acts as support and less resistance for beginners.
They want you to believe that this is a product you can buy once and anyone can use it. The goal is to cast as wide of a net as possible. This way they can always stay very general in their marketing position without the need for proof, or validity of their claims from any one demographic.
BONUS 3rd reason! Unnecessary Versatility
What’s even worse is when the equipment is made, “university tested”, “clinically researched”, and “doctor approved” for one particular use, but they try to make it seem more versatile that it actually is by saying it can be used for multiple purposes/bodyparts. They do this for almost every piece of equipment as a way to create the illusion of adding more value for your dollar. It’s that “But Wait there’s More” moment often found in infomercials, however in this case there isn’t really anything more. You are not getting another product for free, or a product add on for free like when those cooking devices “throw in” the sharpest never dulling knife if you buy in the next 20 minutes. The value they try to add is the convenience of you only needing to buy and use one piece of equipment to do everything; thus supporting their solve all the problems strategy. Sure, there are some pieces of equipment that could have the ability to be used in multiple ways, but doesn’t mean it’s actually useful, effective or even safe to do. Just because you can does not mean that you should.
For example I can use my cell phone to hammer small nails, but it won’t be efficient, effective, and safe for me or the phone if I am expected to use it afterwards.