Not unlike America’s mass retailers, sales are down at all of the major television shopping channels. As an example QVC announced today that they will cut 700 jobs to reduce costs to offset slow sales.
Profits at the shopping channel giant fell 23% because of slowing sales. In addition, all of the networks are suffering from customers defaulting on their in house credit cards. This is not unlike the rest of the credit card industry. For shopping channels this problem is compounded by the fact that there are no cash customers.
How does this affect future shopping channel vendors and entrepreneurs? No matter how bad the economy gets shopping channels are always looking for new products. New, innovative, “never seen that before” products are their lifeblood.
You must make it an easy decision. Shopping channel executives are measured based on the ability to pick winning products. It is a lot safer to say no then it yes to a new item. You have to make saying yes to your product an obvious answer.
You have one chance at a first impression. With the market as it is one shot is all you have. If your product is not prime time ready with all of the networks requirements met up front you will not get on. Chances are you will never get a chance to represent that product again.
If you do not have extensive experience working directly with shopping channels such as QVC, HSN or Shop NBC I highly recommend that you secure the services of an experienced agent.
An experienced agent can, first off, get you a meeting with the right buyer in days not months, but more importantly he or she will know the best way to position your product for success, meet the network requirements and overcome any objections that the buyer may have well in advance.
The bottom line is that there is still great opportunity to prosper working with the shopping networks but little room for mistakes.