The Rise of Real Estate Infomercials -
From the very beginning of the industry, real estate infomercials have been very successful. There’s something about the idea of making money in real estate that appeals to a lot of people.
In fact, most of the real estate infomercials that have appeared through the years have been scams for several reasons. First the information that they purported to have, the secrets that only they knew but would sell to you for some small or not so small sum of money, were fairly common knowledge easily gleaned at a local library or available for free from the government. Second, the “testimonials” from other, satisfied clients of the “plan” turned out to have been paid actors reading from a script and playing a role designed by the infomercial producers. And finally, some of them are using every advertising trick in the book to cover up the fact that they are outright lying.
The most famous example of real estate infomercials that turned out to be total frauds was a very successful program, that, to this day, many viewers remember seeing. It stars a small, Vietnamese immigrant named Tom Vu who pitches his real estate magical formula from his mansion, his yacht or one of his many expensive cars while surrounded constantly with bikini clad swimsuit models. What was Tom Vu selling? A seminar where he would reveal how he, a dirt poor immigrant, made a fortune in real estate and how you could copy his formula and get wealthy yourself by buying the information. What was he really selling?
Tom Vu sold the bodies of those gorgeous swimsuit models. Most people sat transfixed, watching this opulent display of wealth and flesh, hearing very little of what was actually being said and instantly got hooked. Before they knew it they were calling and signing up for old Tom’s seminar not because they were so taken with him and what he was saying, but because somehow he made them believe that they could be surrounded with beautiful women, just like Tom. If that little, funny looking guy could do it, then so can I! Somehow, this worked. Tom has had some legal problems over this venture and the only secret he had to sell was the secret of making infomercials that mesmerized an audience into calling and spending some money without ever really knowing why. This was early on in the growth of the industry when there was little accountability, but even so, Tom Vu was the model for almost all of the real estate infomercials that followed through the years.
Nowadays, real estate infomercials have learned how to use some of the fantastically successful Tom Vu techniques and avoid the legal problems. They do deliver a product - a book, a guide, a history of profitable real estate transactions that could be followed and could be profitable. You’ve all seen the young, good looking guy talking about the fortune he has made buying houses for no money down, fixing them up and then selling them for a profit. Have you noticed he’s sitting poolside in