August 27, 2002

The Promise . . .
and the Real Story Behind the Infomercials

By Phil Kaplan

Before I get started, let me say that I am going to do an infomercial. One way or another I'm going to have an infomercial production that is ethical, powerful, and far reaching. How do I know? Because I must, and that "must" starts with this documentation of "the promise. "

Envision a typical infomercial. A Barbie doll looking spokeswoman and a white smile Ken doll talk on screen about the wonders of an amazing new product. Whether it trims the tummy, melts fat, or makes the pounds drop like magic, this product is the end-all, be-all, problem solver for your life.

Suddenly . . . CRRRRRRAAAAASH! I come bursting into the studio, smash the set and product into a million pieces, and promise for the next 30 minutes that I will share the fitness truth. It would in essence be "the anti-infomercial infomercial." That's what I'm about to do. Smash the deception. Bust up the fraud! Kick some infomercial butt!

For years the infomercial companies have been soliciting me, promising zillions of dollars . . . if I'll just follow their script . . . work within the already established paradigm. Here is the current paradigm:

  • Present something as a new discovery or a secret known only to a select few
  • Have actors read testimonials that clearly indicate the product being offered had a remarkable impact on their lives with very little effort
  • Get someone with a nice smile who can act as a "host" and someone who looks intelligent to act as the "expert."
  • Have the host interview the expert and act shocked and surprised by the impact the product is having upon . . . people . . . regular people . . . people "just like you."
  • Be certain the host emphasizes the "fact" that using this product for results is amazingly quick, requires absolutely no effort, and the results are beyond miraculous.
  • 7 minutes into the show, begin the "Call to Action." That's where the host and/or the expert urge you to call now to receive some sort of special miraculous bonus or money saving opportunity.
  • Repeat another host, expert, actor segment spiked with testimonials for 7 minutes
  • Return to the Call to Action
  • Repeat again, leading to a "last chance" offer made at the conclusion of the show

Hold that step by step agenda up to any infomercial being aired today and I can assure you you'll find the format to be right on the money.

I've personally been through three infomercial experiences. Each one was going to make me rich and famous according to the people who were shoving contracts down my throat, and each one was going to maintain the utmost concern for my integrity. Here's what I've since learned. People lie. Infomercial producers are not always above saying anything they have to say to land their perfect "pitch man." What they fail to understand is I'm not a pitch man! I'm actually infomercial poison if you hold me up against the paradigm. I just don't fit that mold.

Stepping away from "the mold" for a moment, let's revisit the concept of an infomercial. Really what we're talking about is information presented in a television format in order to sell a product. Why does that have to equate with stretching the truth, with exaggerating, and in some cases blatantly lying? I don't think it does.

There have been some (but not enough) severe fines brought about by the FTC, and currently it looks as if some of the purveyors of the EMS abdominal magic systems will be doing some jail time, but still . . . any Saturday morning your television is filled with wild exaggerations.

If you buy into these offers, there are just so many things you can do! First of all you can shape your abs in minutes. That frees up so much of your day. You can then spend all of your newfound free time sealing your foods and bedding in a Vacuum Sealer while you make lots of money using Don Lapre's Wealth Building System, Carlton Sheets' Real Estate Program, or get Grants and Government Money from the guy with the question marks all over his clothing.

If you feel it's time for some physical enhancement, skip the plastic surgery route. You can now spend just a few dollars and increase the size of your breasts naturally. "And it really works!"

You can also clean your car, strip away paint, chop foods in seconds, vacuum the house without any effort, whiten your teeth, open clogged drains, stop snoring, attract the opposite sex, open jars, braid your hair, straighten your hair, grow new hair, remove your body hair, or attract the big fish like crazy with True Motion Lures. Then, all that's left for you to tone and tighten is . . . your face!

If you trust Linda Evans to be your new dermatologist (and who wouldn't?) you'll find yourself investing in Rejuvenique, The Ultimate Facial Toning System. It's a bargain! You can get the equivalent of 8 situps a second in your face (according to the Doctor on the show) and it's available for four easy payments of only $49.75.

Yes, you too can get facial situps for only $200! Now come on, doesn't that mask look just the least bit creepy? Haven't we seen it somewhere before. Wait a minute . . . yes . . . it's coming back to me . . . it was in the movies! Jim Carey wore it and turned into some sort of weird outrageous and powerful green guy. Leave it to Hollywood to take something from a movie and convert it into an infomercial. The infomercial gurus sit around saying, "we can buy this mask really inexpensively and sell it for $100 . . . if only we could convince people that it won't make you into a green guy, an evil monster, or a a killer . . . it will improve your face!"

Come to think of it, maybe that's why Hannibal Lecter had such good skin. It was Anthony Hopkin's way of exercising his face during shooting. I'd guess under Jason's mask from the Friday the 13th movies, he too has a wonderful complexion.

Once your foods are stored in vacuum bags, your money's in the bank, and you have the most muscular and toned face on your block, you better go beyond just the abs and get that body into shape. There are many options. Richard Simmons can help you Blast Away the Pounds, while an infomercial on another channel promises you can Walk Them Away. And of course, if you're not ready to Blast or Walk, you can get the 6-week Body Makeover. I wonder if the Ab-Doer fits into the 6-week makeover plan? If not, I guess you could always cut it to pieces with a ginsu knife . . . they say it cuts through steel.

So why would I, the man you've come to trust for solid, valuable, legitimate, fitness information . . . the man who shared "the Naked Truth," want to again foray into the land of Infomercials? I guess I'd call it justice. After three negative experiences, after endless battles over scripts and offers, after compromises, legal fees, and hours and hours of worthless footage, the "quick fix" infomercials abound and I haven't had any impact upon the infomercial watching public. I could walk away, but you probably know me better than that. If I fail to give this my best effort, people will continue to show up at my seminars after years of frustration seeking "the one that works." I believe the infomercial I want to create will help people understand, they have the power to change within them. It just has to be unleashed, and that doesn't happen from a potion, pill, powder, or secret formula. It happens when people become empowered with the truth.

The past is behind me. This time it's gonna be different. I'm working closely with a top infomercial attorney to protect my image, my words, my integrity and my products. While infomercials have evolved into some twisted form of advertising, I believe conceptually, an infomercial can deliver truth, absolute truth, and can sell products as well! I don't believe you have to scream at people to get their attention, nor do I believe you have to mislead them to get them to act. My seminars and radio shows prove these theories repeatedly.

What I want to do this time is bring my radio show and seminars to television. I want to talk to people as people want to be spoken to. I won't jump around yelling silly phrases or confronting people in shopping malls and restaurants. As the infomercials grow more and more bizarre, I feel it's time for someone to change the rules and that's exactly what I plan to do.

Be A Part of Empowering America!

Other infomercials use actors. I refuse to. Other infomercials rely upon scripts crafted by slick copywriters. My show will be unscripted. I have thousands of people who have achieved dramatic life-changing results with my programs. I feel bad for those who volunteered to share their stories on camera during my previous attempts. The companies I was contracted with owned the footage, thus, if the show didn't air, the emotion filled sincere testimonials were scrapped. I have no less than 100 hours of actual testimonials on tape, but I can't use any of it. That's why I'm reaching out again, asking people who have experienced any significant results with my programs, to contact me. I want to collect real, honest, powerful testimonials and this time I'll have control over how the footage is used. If you've sat before the camera before, I ask that you do it again, as this time the message will get out there. Every day I get phone calls, letters, and e-mails from people saying, "thanks Phil, you changed my life." Of course I never take the credit. I always explain that they did it. I simply gave them the information they needed to make the change.

My message has thankfully been spread throughout the U.S. in print and on radio, but when I look at the escalating obesity challenge, when I witness the continuous fraudulent selling of supplements to seniors, bodybuilders, and the deconditioned, I feel as if I haven't even made a dent. In the year 2003 my radio show will have a national syndicated presence. In the year 2003 I will have a TV show - the anti-infomercial infomercial - reaching homes nationwide.

If you'd like to be a part of it by telling your story or sharing an experience you've had as a result of any of my programs, products, or seminars, e-mail your story or your comments to Holly at or call my office directly at 1 800 552-1998.

The Next Seminar:

October 24, my "Breakthroughs" seminar hits the Pacific coast! I'm doing a one night only event in Manhattan Beach, California. Trainers from around the world will be attending, but this seminar is for EVERYONE! You'll learn to master the concepts of physical change, whether the goal is to help others or to simply achieve dramatic results on your own. If you live in Southern Cal, and have been asking when I'm coming out there . . . you have your answer! October 24!

For those of you in South Florida, I can promise that January is going to be life changing if you plan on attending my next East Coast "Breakthroughs" event. It's taking place January 9, 2003, at the Marriott Marina in Fort Lauderdale from 7:30 - 10:30 PM. There are still significant discounts available on tickets for both, the California and Florida events if you call Holly now at 1 800 552-1998.

If you won't be in South Florida or Southern California and you can't attend the Breakthroughs seminar . . . get the book that shares it all!

The testimonials keep coming.

"The most powerful fitness book I've ever read, and that's from a guy who's read them all! The Best You've Ever Been is entertaining, but more importantly, it really hits home with the information people such as my clients need in order to finally get the results they've wanted. I make it mandatory for each one of my clients to get a copy! And now I'll share a little secret. I learned a lot from the book . . . and I've been a trainer for 8 years! It cleared up so much about the supplements, the way the hormonal system works, and most of all, about how to sort through the "low carb - low fat" battle. Following the Advanced 8-week Physical Excellence Program in the book I managed for the first time in my life to cut my bodyfat down below 10% and I'm turning 40 this year. Thanks Phil!

- Michael Scott Calahan, Personal Fitness Trainer, Baton Rouge, LA

Find info and ordering details by clicking here.

The Small Group Sessions

As many of you know, I've reintroduced my Small Group workshops and they're selling out! I just completed the August group and have scheduled a one-on-one assessment with each participant for October. I anticipate fantastic results from this empowered and motivated group. I will conducting the sessions personally for the remainder of 2002 in my Miramar Florida office with the next opening Monday, September 23, 2002. 2002. At the time that I'm writing this Update, there are only three openings left. If you want to work with me personally, call for details on this 4-week interactive program. It's only $249 for the entire four-week course (one night per week for four weeks).

Of Interest to Fitness Professionals:

  • The New Health & Wealth Newsletter - the success secret of the fitness elite!
  • The PEAK Weekend is now an international full blown conference event! The Fort Lauderdale event was awesome, and now . . . we're going West! 500 more trainers from around the world will learn how to power up their businesses and profits . . . but they'll learn to do so by actually doing some good for people . . . and, they'll enjoy a weekend at one of my favorite escapes, Manhattan Beach, California! Call Holly for details at 1 800 552-1998 (are you sick of me saying that yet?) or sign up on line!
  • If you are a fitness professional and have found benefit in any of my books, programs, newsletters, or seminars, I'd love to hear from you. I'm building up my "arsenal of evidence," which already contains over 2500 testimonials from fitness professionals . . . but for the new TV show and the related efforts I'll be undertaking, I would like to provide some updates. I love to hear success stories! You can e-mail your comments to

Suggested Next Page:

    Go to the Previous [ Update ].

If You Haven't Been There Yet:

[ Fitness Superstore ] [ Site MENU ] [ Seminars ]

Previous Updates:

Update 8/01/02 - Clearing up Four Prevalent Myths
(from "eating at night" to the newest Atkins rumors)

Update 6/20/02 - Giving Credit Where Credit is Due
Update 5/11/02 - Miracle GH, What "Works"
Update 3/25/02 - Women on Steroids and More on Core Training
Update 2/15/02 - the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Fitness
Update 1/14/02 - Counting Calories
Update 12/28 - 'Twas the Night Before New Years
Update 12/8 - The New Electronic Ab Offerings
Update 12/12 - The "Magic" is Within You
Update 11/20 - Holiday eating!

Update 11/3 - Weight Loss Bread and other Nonsense!
Update 10/29 - Supplement Values
Update 10/3 - Getting Back to Doing What We Do
Update 9/19 - Tragedy and Love, RE: Sept 11
Update 8/15 - Myths, Fallacies, False Beliefs
Update 8/1 - The Internet, Leptin, Steroids, and more
Update 7/9 - The New Supplements
Update 6/14 - Seminar offerings and clarity on "Brownies"
Update 5/29 - Lose Weight, Eat Brownies?!?!?
Update 5/1/01
- Pizza, Beer, and Fitness
Update 4/7/01 - "Phil-osophies" and Rip-Off Realities!
Update 4/1/01 - Gourmet Recipes!
Update 3/15/01 - Research Has Proven?
Update 3/1/01 - Preparing for The New Infomercial
Update 2/1/01 - Time, Space, Matter, and Energy
Update 1/15/01 - Atkins hits the UK
Update 10/7/00 - Supplements, Additional Clarity
Update 7/27/00 - The Experts Round Table, Almada, Colgan, Parillo
Update 7/3/00 - Core Training & Metabolism Boosters

[ Home ] [ Site Menu ] [ For Fitness Professionals ] [ Superstore ] [ Update Menu ] [ Ask Phil ]
[ Small Group Workshops ] [ Programs ]

This site is designed and operated by Phil Kaplan
Phil Kaplan's Fitness is located at
3132 Fortune Way, #D1
Wellington, Florida 33414
The TOLL-FREE Product Order Line is 1 800 552-1998
The Direct Office Number is 561 204-2014
The Fax Number is 561 204-2184