Proctor & Gamble's Dryel suffered a black eye on national Televisions when a live studio "test"pitted professional drycleaning versus the do-it-yourself kit. The winner:
professional drycleaning, and it wasn't close!
IFI worked closely with NBC's "Later Today" to help ensure that consumers get the straight story on Dryel's
shortcommings. Since P&G launched its marketing campaign last fall, the consumer products company hased used misleading to promote Dryel, promting IFI to file complaints with the Federal Trade Commisiion and
consumer protection agencies.
So, IFI took full advantage of the opportunity to
"shape" this story, and on balance, a very accurate report on Dryel's shortcomings was broadcast to a nationwide
audience of millions.
The nine minute broadcast, which March 17th, was hosted by "Later Today's" consumer correspondent Janice Lieberman and co-anchor Florence Henderson with outakes of the broadcast:
"You've probably seen the ads for those new kits that promise to dryclean your close at home. The big question of couse, do they work?"
"We picked a kit called Dryel, which claims to
clean and freshen your dry-clean only clothes right at home. We took two of the same blouses, and we're going to compare Dryel with a professional drycleaner. Live."
NBC played a tape of Lieberman
holding a yellow silk-rayon blouse, which she stained with red wine, ball-point pen ink, coffee, and lipstick.
"Ok, we have our messy shirt, lets head to the cleaners."
Lieberman then took the blouse to a nearby drycleaner, and explained to him the source of the stains. He promised to do his best to remove them.
the tape ended and the show returned "live," Lieberman and Henderson aplied the same stains to an identical blouse.
She then said: "this is very unscientific, but it's the best we can do."
The freshly applied staining agents were not allowed to dry, both women used Dryel stain removal solution on wet stains. They followed the Dryel instructions, and inserted the bagged garment into a
dryer for 30 minutes.
"We're about to see the results of our home drycleaning test."
the camera panned to the professional cleaned blouse. The verdict: "Let's see how the
drycleaners did. This cost us $4.75. They got everything out, it's perfect."
Then the moment of truth. Lieberman pulled the Dryel bag out of the dryer and proclaimed "The stains were lightened, but
they didn't come out." She also commented on the garments wrinkled appearance and the appearacne of water "rings" left by the stain removal solution.
The reporter concluded, " I think this really
works on refreshing sweaters, if your're in a bar, if it's smoky, to get the smell out. I am a little disappointed about the stains. I was hoping they would come out a little better."