E-commerce Link: Lights, Camera, (Sales) Action!
Sometimes, the impetus for creating a video campaign comes in ways you might not expect. When two thespians created a video highlighting the fountain special effects created by mixing Diet Coke and Mentos, the candy company played along, and bought available ad space alongside the video (which has been viewed millions of times), and created its own user-generated video contest.
Whatever your focus in developing a video program, avoid replicating TV ads. Consumers are enthusiastic about online video, but they’re also increasingly deploying technologies to tune out pure advertising. Shoppers are interested in relevant, entertaining content—not the hard sell.
At the same time, it’s unnecessary to launch into a full-scale production environment with custom videos for every product on your site. Use consumer-grade electronics and focus on your top products for the initial rollout. Encourage user-submitted video content as
another way to test the waters.
When deciding where to focus your efforts, consider your target audience. Forrester Research found that younger audiences watch considerably more online video than older Internet users, so if certain products appeal more to older customers, skip video for them. And find out whether your customers have broadband access; if they’re in a region that’s underserved by cable or DSL service, they’re not likely to download videos at a snail’s pace.
But if your brand is indeed a match for online video, now is the time to begin building a focused multimedia program. By showcasing your products in new ways and providing deep content for your core customer base, you’ll not only see action in the videos on your site, but you also can expect to reap sales and loyalty.
Ken Burke is founder and CEO of MarketLive, an e-commerce technology services provider based in Petaluma, Calif. He can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.