The world of retail has changed drastically over the past decade, and one of the biggest changes has been the shift to livestream shopping. According to Forbes, revenue from livestream shopping is anticipated to surpass $20 billion in 2022. Livestream shopping has become a powerful way to generate sales, and it’s essential for brands to incorporate livestream shopping into their marketing plans.
In this Collabstr article, we’ll take a deep dive into the world of livestream shopping– including what it is and the top tips for hosting a successful livestream shopping session.
What Is Livestream Shopping?
In livestream shopping, the host, usually an influencer or online creator, markets a product during a live video stream where viewers can make purchases in real time.
What makes livestream shopping unique is that the content is not only presented live (unfiltered and unedited), the audience can participate in real-time with the host to ask questions or make comments and ask questions, and the host can respond.
We’ve all seen the old-school shopping TV channels, where products are shown off, with a number at the bottom of the screen in bold font, to call to place your order. Livestream shopping is essentially a modern version of this business model.
A good example of livestream shopping is It’sJudyTime, an influencer who regularly hosts livestream shopping events on Facebook and YouTube for makeup and accessories.
What Do You Need to Host a Livestream Shopping Event?
So what does a livestream shopping event entail? There are three non-negotiable components of a livestream shopping event:
First is the host. The host is the person who facilitates the event. The host promotes the product, elicits input from the audience, and responds to the viewers’ questions and comments in real-time.
Usually, brands partner with an influencer to host the event, as the influencer already has both experience in front of the camera and a loyal following. However, it’s important to note that you hire an influencer who’s familiar with your product and fits within your niche. You’ll also want someone that gets good engagement from their audience.
Not sure how to find the perfect creator to partner with? On Collabstr, you can filter through thousands of verified influencers to find the perfect creator for your brand’s niche.
Next is the platform. The platform is the website where you choose to host your livestream shopping event. You can choose between social media platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, or Facebook, or opt for shopping sites that offer live streaming platforms, like Amazon or TaoBao.
Choosing the right platform depends largely on your audience. (We’ll cover that in-depth later).
The final component you need for a livestream shopping session is the product. The product is the item that your brand chooses to promote during the livestream, and it’s the star of the show.
Choosing the right product depends, again, on your audience, as not everyone watches livestream shopping sessions. That’s why certain products, such as fashion and beauty items, tend to fare better on livestream shopping sessions than others.
How to Make Your Shoppable Livestream Successful
Okay, let’s get into the best strategies you can use to make your livestream shopping session a home run. Here are our top tips for making livestream shopping an effective tool for you and your brand:
Create a loyal audience
The success of your livestream shopping depends almost exclusively on the caliber of your audience. Although sheer numbers of viewers will contribute to the success of your event, having the right viewers is even more important. Marketing to the right group before hosting an engaging, exciting event will help keep shoppers coming back for more.
As shoppers repeatedly attend your events, the goal is for you to make them feel they are part of a bigger community. This will keep their interest, and increase their engagement during the event.
For example, if you’re a skincare brand, you’re probably going to be looking to partner with beauty influencers, but that’s not where you should stop. You can take it a step further by narrowing down your search specifically to skincare influencers, and you can take it another step further by narrowing it down into subcategories of skincare, like influencers that focus specifically on skincare for acne.
Like we mentioned earlier, a livestream shopping session is only successful if you have people there participating in the event. That’s why marketing in advance is crucial to your livestream shopping session’s success. Here are some of our top tips for marketing your livestream shopping session:
Create hype around the event: Use mechanisms like exclusive discounts or deals to build excitement for the event in advance. This will help condition your audience to attend the live event with the pre-formed intention to make a purchase. You want to give yourself enough time to market the event so you can pull this off.
Hire influencers to market with you: Partnering with an influencer in your niche builds trust and credibility for your brand, not to mention interest from an entire following that you likely wouldn’t otherwise have. Influencers can help get the word out to their followers, which can increase your following exponentially. At Collabstr, we make finding the right influencer for your brand an easy, seamless process.
Run ads on social media: It’s a classic marketing technique, but for good reason. Create awareness of your event by running sponsored content on platforms like Facebook or Instagram. You can leverage UGC platforms to get some high-quality ad creatives for your campaign. Don’t forget to collect emails on your landing page so that you can remind potential customers to join the event when you go live.
Choose the right platform for your audience
Arguably the most important part of creating a successful livestream shopping event is choosing the right platform for your audience. Different groups respond differently to different platforms, so it’s important to choose the platform that your intended audience engages with the most.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, GenZers and millennials make up the biggest group that participates in livestream events. This group tends to prefer social media platforms such as Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook.
Lastly, don’t count the baby boomers out. Most of us have seen our grandmas or elderly neighbors posting cat memes or resharing viral copy-and-paste messages on Facebook. They are huge Facebook users and respond well to livestream shopping events.
Create the right video content
Part of the benefit of a livestream shopping session is that it’s, well, live. This means you should utilize the unique opportunity that having a live audience provides for you. The best thing you can do to create a successful livestream shopping session is to incorporate tools that will increase audience engagement.
For example, use tools like raffles and giveaways to keep your audience’s attention. Offer promotional prices so your audience has the incentive to keep watching and actively make a purchase during the stream. To increase engagement, try putting out a poll or asking for input from the audience through comments. Make sure you choose a host that can interact with followers using these mechanisms.
You also want to make sure your host is someone that is equipped with a content creator kit that has all the tools necessary to ensure a high-quality livestream. A good camera, lighting, and microphone are essential for a solid foundation.
Choose the right host
Collaborating with the right influencer can make or break your livestream shopping session. It’s vital to choose a host who is not only entertaining to watch but skilled at drawing out engagement from the audience. Choosing a host who already has a connection with the audience is usually a good choice for improving audience engagement.
One question to ask yourself is whether or not the prospective host aligns with your brand’s niche. For example, choosing an influencer who creates hiking and nature content wouldn’t have the same audience that a fashion and beauty influencer would have. It’s always best to ensure the influencer you hire is suitable to market your product.
Use available data to optimize your content
Lastly, use the data available to continually learn and improve. Following every livestream shopping session, take the time to thoroughly review and study your analytics from the event. This data is a goldmine for understanding your audience and what components of your livestream shopping session they responded best to.
For example, ask yourself questions like these:
How many users were watching the event?
How much engagement was there compared to other sessions you’ve hosted?
Were there some products that had a higher purchase rate than others?
At what points in the session did shoppers make the highest number of purchases?
Were there special discounts or other promotions that you used in this event? How did those affect your sales?
Analyzing these types of questions will help you continually learn how to optimize your content in a way that will produce the most revenue for your brand.
Livestream shopping sessions are one of the most powerful tools in the modern retail world to drive sales and generate revenue for your brand. According to Forbes, by 2025, the forecasted revenue from livestream shopping sessions will surpass $57 billion. That kind of number is hard to ignore! Using the tips we’ve discussed in this article will help your brand optimize its sales from livestream shopping sessions and keep shoppers coming back for more.
To find the best influencers to partner with your brand, create an account on Collabstr today. Collabstr is designed to help you find the perfect influencer for your brand’s niche and budget. Using tools like the influencer engagement rate calculator and our free templates, creating a partnership with your ideal influencer can become a seamless process.