It’s not secret that Vancouver is Hollywood North attracting new television shows and network pick up to our lovely city. Buyologic is just one example that brings together flash mob product testing and health issues to the forefront. We chatted with host Isla Traquair, renowned journalist, who came to Vancouver for a visit, but like many, fell in love and made the move. Produced by Anna and Kristina (of Anna and Kristina’s Grocery Bag), and takes product testing of health products to a new level and will feature her learnings on the Oprah Winfrey Network.
PS: Casting Call: 200 Testers Needed December 8, 2011
For the first episode, we tested at-home abdominal workout equipment—and then gave some away! For the next episode, we’re looking for 100 voices to chime in on another set of products to be announced shortly. Expect a fun, high energy, on-set television experience full of prizes!
1. You’ve travelled the world but fell in love with Vancouver? What are your some of your favourites things about the city?
Yes, I have been very blessed to have travelled far and wide and I have loved many countries but there are very few places I could imagine actually living. I came to Vancouver to visit friends who had moved over from Scotland. I instantly fell in love with Vancouver and the whole of BC. It’s the fact there’s this vibrant city wonderfully nestled in between mountains, beaches, forests and the ocean. Being Scottish I feel very at home with the mountains nearby and of course the rain! The summers most definitely make up for the rain though. I also like the diversity within the city. There’s Downtown for days you feel like being in a big city, Granville Island for when you feel like being a tourist, Stanley Park for my aquarium and nature fix and the lovely beaches where I love to sit and take in the view. I live near the water and there’s nothing better than going for a walk or run and seeing the water and mountains and thinking, “I live here!”
2. You have a new show, Buy.o.logic coming up on the Oprah Winfrey Network. Tell us about how that came to be and what the show is about.
After coming here on vacation my friend encouraged me to investigate the television industry over here. So I quite simply emailed round, met up with various production companies, pitched some ideas and thankfully met the lovely team at Worldwide Bag Media who took one of my ideas, developed and improved it with their expertise in consumer shows and OWN Canada liked what we came up with. When I actually sit down and take stock of the fact I came over here and no one knew me or anything about my career history and here I am working with a really fantastic team and our series is going to be on the Oprah Winfrey Network, I feel so very blessed. I’ve had an amazing career as a television correspondent and national news anchor in the UK but now I feel ready to really get my teeth stuck into a subject close to my heart and that’s health. Buy.o.ologic is a one stop shop where science meets shopping. There’ll be wonderfully visual scientific demonstrations about how the body works, flash mob product tests which people can take part in, in-depth investigations into health issues like allergies or migraines and we’ll test out related products and pop up street clinics which will shock and surprise. Anyone interested in taking part in product testing or who would like a health issue investigated can get in touch via our website www.bagmedia.ca. The next flash mob test is taking place on December 8th.
3. Why is this show unique and why should viewers tune in?
This is a show which not only tackles all manner of health issues but it also goes deeper and looks into the products which may or may not be enhancing our health. So it’s not just a health show, it’s very much a consumer show as well. I don’t think there’s ever been a series which will do what we are doing. You’ll need to tune in to see exactly what I mean but trust me that there’ll be some surprises and everyone will be talking about Buy.o.logic. This is not a studio based doctor programme. I get out there and get my hands dirty so that people watching will not only be entertained but will come away having learned a few golden nuggets of information that will help them improve their quality of life.
4. What is one valuable tip you’ve learned from working with product testing veterans Anna Wallner and Kristina Matisic?
That they’ve left the most embarrassing products for me to test! Just kidding. Anna and Kristina are the product testing goddesses and I am not attempting to replicate them nor is Buy.o.logic replicating Shopping Bags. The main piece of advice they’ve given me is that I have to be very thorough when testing products so that we have the absolute trust of viewers. Extreme product testing is how I think of it. We test the science as well as the usability. At the end of the day we are giving viewers tips so they can make a more informed decision when buying things.
5. Any sneak previews or tips you can share with viewers on what they can expect?
Gosh, there will be lots of tips and fascinating facts on the show. Here’s a few; bad breath comes from the back of your dirty tongue, the average person breaks wind 15-20 times a day, and when it comes to allergies, the most expensive vacuum is not necessarily the best.