I recently bumped into a really cool post from the good people over at ripenecommerce.com that covered some of the more innovative ways brands are integrating ecommerce’s profitability and video’s entertainment value to create new types of consumer experiences. The examples showcased included Juicy Couture‘s Youtube clip, that uses Youtube’s annotation features to drive viewers to buy the looks in the clip, Target’s “Falling For You” campaign, which is essentially a soap-opera you can shop from, and Ssense’s video clip collaboration with FKi and Iggy Azalea, which similarly to the Target concept, is a music video you can shop from.
Why don’t we see more of this?
I think these innovative approaches are cool representatives for the “avant garde” of the world that exists in the overlap between commerce and media, and as such should be commended for their originality, effort and guts.
If these efforts are to ever evolve beyond being one-off marketing projects (which granted have obviously scored very decent PR value already) the following key points need to be resolved first:
Boldly establishing ROI
Retailers are going to need to see a critical mass of credible case studies citing costs and return-on-investment.
The technology has to be commoditized
As long as the technology is costly and known only to a select few early adopters there’s no hope of it becoming widely popular.
Can’t be pricey
With videos the cost question is obviously much wider than just the price of any single “techy” component (Content Delivery Network, player, etc…), and all the bits need to be priced at a point accessible to SMEs. The above example of Juicy Couture’s project is a good example of how this principle applies: From a technology perspective the cost of delivery via Youtube is exactly zero, however it’s safe to assume director Terry Richardson and supermodel Candice Swanepoel didn’t come cheap….
Can’t be complicated/time consuming
If it’s to ever go mainstream a technology can’t afford to be complicated or time consuming. If tagging purchasable items in a video is going to take hours to complete you can be pretty sure that even the best intentioned retailers will struggle to find the time. The technology behind the very cool Ssense video mentioned above is an example for this principle – it really is super cool, but you need to dedicate yourself into applying it.
So what’s a retailer to do?
So what guiding principles should retailers consider when evaluating new video technologies for product display? The same ones that apply to any such question:
- What’s my goal?
- Given the costs – What’s the likelihood of ROI?
- How quickly can it be up, running and delivering said ROI?
- How will performance be evaluated to ensure the ROI is actually there?
Retailers for whom these are important concerns often opt to adopt our solutions, precisely because we provides very good answers to these questions:
- Treepodia demonstrably and consistently helps retailers achieve their prime goal – SELL MORE
- With a quadruple Return-on-Investment guarantee merchants have a pretty strong case for adopting our service
- The solution creates, publishes and monitors performance of thousands of product videos within hours, regardless of the merchant’s site’s technology
- The platform includes a robust statistics panel that makes it very easy to track ROI down to the individual video