Shoppable Videos May Be The Next Evolution In Television

December 16, 2019 Sarah Cavill

Shutterstock_ 1256409751 attractive stylish african american girl holding bowl with food and watching tv at home

Wouldn’t it be nice to reach into the TV and buy the outfits of your favorite TV stars? You may not ever be able to shop Jennifer Aniston’s closet, but products and merchandise may soon be a click away for TV watchers thanks to shoppable videos. Shoppable videos are gaining popularity and could offer opportunities for advertisers looking for new revenue sources on ad-free streaming networks. The merging of commerce and video is likely to change the way consumers shop in the future and create opportunities for partnerships, brand engagement and full-funnel results.

Shoppable Videos Are Rolling Out As TV Evolves Creatively And Technologically

At a time when TV is constantly being talked about as an innovative creative medium, it’s also undergoing a full-scale technological revolution. The far reaching adoption of streaming on mobile and TV screens (62% of Americans subscribe to streaming services) and the use of hardware like Smart TVs, are increasingly taking TV from a passive activity to an interactive one. Americans are also multi-screening while watching TV, with a recent Facebook study showing that 94% of Americans have their smartphones in hand while enjoying their TV time.

Brands Are Using QR And Other Technologies To Begin Introducing Shoppable Ads On TV

Shoppable videos are capitalizing on these changing evolutions in TV watching, and marketers are beginning to implement some adjacent technologies like voice assistance and QR codes. NBCUniversal introduced a QR-deployed shopping feature in October that allows audiences to buy products from certain shows, previously testing the format during the French Open in May with conversions 30% higher than other ecommerce benchmarks.

However, AdAge points out, “From both supply and demand perspectives, shoppability on TV is still in its early stage. But the promise of marketers simultaneously achieving brand building and performance is within reach.” When implemented, shoppable videos could allow for top-funnel engagement and data acquisition, via promotions and click-through to lead gen forms, and lower-funnel conversions that provide valuable revenue streams for advertisers who might be otherwise shut out of streaming networks that don’t use traditional ad formats.

Serena And Celine Are Getting In Front Of Shoppable Videos As Other Platforms Embrace And Promote Shopping Innovations

Although not entirely adapted for TV yet, shoppable videos are successfully making their way to other platforms with some big names attached. Serena Williams has partnered with Verizon Media on a series of shoppable videos for Yahoo’s Shopping platform, showcasing her “S by Serena” fashion line and empowerment messaging. Instagram has tapped Celine Dion for their first campaign promoting in-app shopping. Dion stars in a 60-second shoppable video promoting luxury brands like Mark Jacobs and Oscar De La Renta. Recently, TikTok and YouTube have also introduced types of shoppable video ad units, although as with TV, most advertisers are still testing different implementations to see how audiences will respond.

As shoppable videos for TV get closer to reality, brands will have to be rigorous about measuring success, with the understanding that there will be a learning and growing phase. AdAge explains, “Given the custom nature of many shoppable ad units, repeated tests are necessary to garner scaled and quantifiable insights by brand vertical, creative format and media partner.”

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About the Author

Sarah Cavill

With more than 20 years of writing, editing and reporting experience, Sarah Cavill brings to Digital Media Solutions (DMS) a fine-tuned and diverse set of skills. Her work has been featured in notable publications including The Daily Muse, CBS Local, Techlicious and Glamour magazine. Sarah has a passion for current events and the deep-dive research that goes into the content development and brand identity of DMS Insights. In her role as Senior Marketing Communications Writer, Sarah contributes to the pitching, researching and writing of multiple stories published each week surrounding digital and performance marketing innovations in pop culture, news, social media, branding and advertising.

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