As Seen On TV

Hey, gang. I was recently asked to help out with a segment for the local television station I used to work for a few years ago. CBS affiliate, KWCH-12 airs a weekly review of the products that are typically found on tv or in late night infomercials. Hosted by the infinitely likable Melissa Scheffler, the segment is one of the most popular things produced here in my hometown. Even if you don’t watch it religiously, you at least know of it.

So, I was excited to get the chance to test out the Magicup, a coffee cup that minimizes spillage, while being open and easy to drink at all times. I won’t tell you how the segment ends, you’ve got to watch it to found out –>

What I can say, however, is that as student of the Master of Innovative Design program at Wichita State University it did get me thinking about what we expect from the things that we buy.

Leaving Magicup out of the argument, I can think of another product we tested, canned soup that heated itself without an external heating device. It was neat, it did exactly what it said it would do, and yet, the soup sucked. It was also more expensive than I wanted sucky soup to be. So, did it work? Yes. Would I ever buy it? No.

Are those the only questions? I think back on that soup can now, and I can’t help but be impressed by the thought behind it. It makes sense to me that someone would create such a thing. So why do I not see it on the shelves? I can go to their website, but there are no news updates since 2012. So, the question I think of now as I sketch out my own ideas, is how much better does a thing have to be in order to get people on board?

This can be a bloggy rant, or we can discuss, what products are in dire need of an upgrade?

Caleb K. Wilson

Caleb Wilson serves as the Digital Content Marketing Manager for the Media Resources Center at Wichita State University where he maintains the online presence for the Media Resources Center, Wichita State TV, and the Instructional Design & Technology teams. Previously, he worked as the Social Media and Marketing Coordinator for KWCH-TV and Sunflower Broadcasting, Inc., managing social media accounts for the company's many brands, training journalists and staff in digital best practices, and contributing on-air as the weekly "Tech Talk" segment digital expert.