As of late, I have been obsessed with the Snuggie. For those of you who don’t know (which I doubt is very many of you), the Snuggie is essentially a blanket with sleeves. Rather than going into a lot of detail, you can watch the infomercial below.

This is essentially all of the advertising that has been done for the Snuggie, and I think it is fair to say that it is pretty terrible copy. Or is it? The last I heard, the Snuggie had over $60 million in sales. If my calculations are correct, that is approximately six million Snuggies ($20 for two essentially). The Snuggie has surpassed being merely a product, and has become a cultural sensation – it may be the most popular “As Seen On TV” product since the Flowbee.

While I think marketing research is extremely valuable for most companies, products, and services, I’m not sure the Snuggie would have made it had any amount of research been done. My initial reaction was stupid ad, stupid product, and I think market research would have found the same reaction from respondents. However, I repeat, I’ve become obsessed. I’m looking for Snuggie pub crawls, and have yet to buy one. My understanding is Bed, Bath, and Beyond is now carrying them, but only in Duke Blue, and I’m just not willing to take that route, especially with the NCAA Tournament starting tomorrow.

What’s fueled this obsession? The first is likely the viral element of advertising. It exceeds bad, so people continued to pass it forward, and many decided to purchase it as a novelty item. Second, people might actually find some of its attributes to be functional. Third, maybe there is a desire to purchase products that are comforting in economic downturns. Or maybe it’s just to participate in a Snuggie pub crawl.