Jason and I stayed with our good friends Greg and Susan while we were in Dallas. We sat up late one night chatting about books. Susan works in publishing, you see, and handles marketing campaigns for a well known author. So we were asking her about the inner workings of publishing and book retail--this kind of stuff is really interesting to me. Then she told us that next week she'll be presenting a book and being interviewed on QVC. Do you ever watch QVC? For my Aussie readers, QVC is a home shopping channel that is on 24 hours a day--all live, even in the middle of the night. I have never really seen it, except for when I'm flipping through the channels.
Susan told us that QVC has a huge viewership--that during the day there are anywhere from 9 to 15 million viewers, and that even in the middle of the night about 2 million people are watching. I had no idea! That's massive. She told us all about how she had to travel to QVC heaven in Pennsylvania for a day long training and "audition" to be on the air. It's a huge complex there, and while the hosts are on the air, they have live minute-by-minute feedback of what people are buying and what "pitches" are working best. Producers monitor how what the hosts say effect sales and direct them via earpieces on what's working. Susan had to do two taped auditions and then get feedback before they told her she was okay to be on air. And then they give you a window of time where they can call you and ask you to fly in--so you have to be on alert for a time. There's a big list of what to wear and not wear on air, and you have to get a manicure. All those close-ups of hands showing products--I guess they don't want any distracting hangnails!
She was talking about how QVC really knows their demographic, and what kind of people are watching at certain times of the day. So I thought, Oh really? Then let's turn it on right now and see if they know us. Greg turned it on and a man and woman were selling under-eye concealer. Just earlier that day I'd said to myself that I really needed to get some better concealer. Seven months of broken sleep are accumulating under my eyes. And now, here is my new friend QVC giving me what I asked for!
How did they know I'd be watching? Do they have magical mind reading powers? What else does QVC know about me? Maybe they know stuff about me that I don't even know. What if it's stuff I need to know? Like if my butt looks big in the new jeans I bought the other day? Or that I ought to moisturize more often? Maybe they know it and they're telling everyone else. QVC thinks I'm fat and scaly but they won't tell me to my face!
I didn't actually order any concealer, but if I'd been watching by myself I might have! They know that, don't they? I guess lots of tired mothers are watching QVC at 11:45 on a Saturday night. Lots of tired, paranoid mothers.
Anyway, I love learning about how stuff works. Don't you? Good luck next week, Susan! Do you ever watch home shopping channels? Have you ever bought anything? Do they use their mind powers on you too?