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The Shake Weight Hits $40 Million In Sales
CNBC.com | August 20, 2010 | 03:43 PM EDT

Call it this year’s Snuggie. The Shake Weight, thanks in big part to the sexual innuendo associated with its ad, is the “As Seen On TV” product of the year. Fitness IQ, which makes the weight that now comes in men’s (five pounds) and women (2 ½ pounds) versions, says it has sold more than two million of them in less than a year. At $20 apiece, that’s $40 million in revenue.

The key to success, it seems, is to make a product that has some benefit, come up with an infomercial that’s funny and viral and then bring it from television to retail. While the real Shake Weight commercials have been viewed on YouTube more than 10 million times, it’s the parodies, both on the site and on television, that have made the product impossible to ignore. How many times does Saturday Night Live spoof a product and use the product’s real name? Click here to see what SNL did with the Shake Weight.

Fitness IQ’s founder and Chief Executive Johann Verheem told me that the lewd nature of the spot is obviously key to making people watch.

“In direct response television, we’re always looking for ways to stop the channel,” Verheem said. “It definitely stops the channel."

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