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Transform Viewers into Buyers

Jan 1, 2013

Shoppable videos, those enhanced with attached or embedded links for direct-from-video purchase opportunities, is fast becoming popular with online sellers. This medium, the strength of which lies in telling stories, gets consumers excited by engaging multiple senses simultaneously, and turns this excitement into action by giving consumers the means to make a purchase on the spot. Video viewers simply point, click and buy, and then return to view their video. Shoppable video offers web wholesalers and retailers an opportunity to monetize customers' attraction to videos. Notably, online advertising spent reached $30 billion in 2011, up 15 percent over the previous year, and Internet surfers are increasingly spending their time perusing videos. It is estimated that 181 million people watched more than 39 billion online content videos during September 2012, and that number is only expected to grow. Cisco forecasts that there will be 1.5 billion Internet video users by 2016, up from 792 million users in 2011. With all that video watching, customers are becoming increasingly comfortable making purchases based on video content, and many retailers are getting on board this trend.

Already this year, big box stores like Barneys New York, Burberry, Neiman Marcus, Target and Kmart have embraced the new medium and released shoppable video campaigns. Google's YouTube presently has external annotations technology in beta, and fashion brands like Juicy Couture and Asos are already using it to create shoppable videos. The new Juicy video features supermodel Candice Swanepoel falling asleep poolside and a dream sequence set in Los Angeles' Chateau Marmont. Photographer Terry Richardson, who directs the video, makes an appearance in the video and the pair drive off in a Mercedes with a backseat full of Juicy shopping bags. The video alerts viewers to items for purchase by showing a muted box over the item. When the box is clicked, a new web page featuring the item opens. The video pauses when that happens, allowing the viewer to browse the shopping page. Asos also uses muted boxes, sized to appear only over the available item, while the Juicy video features one large box throughout. YouTube presently offers the technology for free.

Similar technology is also available from several marketing strategy firms. Akel{Ventures}, for example, offers iCan Get It (iCGI) technology, which enables viewers to instantly purchase products or services while watching a show or video on a computer, web-enabled TV or DVR. The videos can be emailed and posted on Facebook. Pokeware, another provider that turns videos into click-to-buy ads, also allows sellers to reach consumers when they are engaged with a video.

Web wholesalers and retailers considering incorporating video advertising into their marketing plans should know that four in ten shoppers visited a store in person or online as a direct result of watching a video, according to YouTube. Clearly it's time for online sellers to consider the power of shoppable videos to transform viewers to buyers in real-time.

Topic: Business Strategies

Related Articles: Shoppable Videos  Video Advertising  Click to Buy 

Article ID: 1690

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