Thursday, 11 November 2010

Video Communication to take over Social media?

When ASOS began showing us their brand new products in a 3D format, draped over a gorgeous size 8 brunette, strutting down a studio catwalk to the awkward drums of a underground indie pop band, I speak for the majority when I say it changed the way we appreciated product viewing. It raised the bar for other fashion retailers, and not many have crossed it, let alone come anywhere near it. 



Knickerpicker is an online lingerie retailer established on the web a few years ago. There short but sweet 'about me' section explains this brand much better than I could.

"Here at knickerPicker we believe shopping should be fun and shopping online should be no different. That's why we created the first interactive video dressing room with a fabulous choice of models.

We understand that no matter what size you are, you are looking for beautiful lingerie. We are committed to stocking the best lingerie brands in sizes from 32AA to 40HH so that you can look fantastic whatever your size or shape."

That is it in a nutshell. The website offers consumers the first interactive video dressing room, equipped with gorgeous women in differing sizes and shapes, in order for the consumer to match their body to the models to gain a better idea of how the lingerie will fit.

The image above demonstrates how the interactive dressing room works. I chose this black bra from a selection of branded bras. The user can click the main image and zoom for details and is offered matching garments below as an add-on incentive. However, the special part of this website is shown on the right hand side of the page. The model, who I have chosen out of a choice of five, walks onto the page from the right (out of video shot). I can then use the command buttons to move the model forwards, backwards and to turn her around nearer to the camera or further away.It gives the user an interactive viewing of the product they desire, allowing them to interact with the site and view the product the way they want to. They have control over their product viewing.

The video below is an example of how it works.

This new form of product viewing is helping retailers to communicate much more successfully with their consumers. Some marketing companies are beginning to see video communication tools accelerate and grow in a way that suggests they will soon take over social media and networking as the primary marketing effort. Many marketing companies are becoming inundated with retailers and businesses seeking help and suggestions of how they can use video communication media to their advantage, suggesting that video communication may be the next big marketing buzz.

Retailers use social networks such as Facebook and Twitter to silently spread their message, yet the consumers of today seem to expect much more. It has been suggested by academics that people learn and take in much more information via movement, moving images and auditory stimulus, so maybe retailers communicating their product offerings and brand personality via videos might be the most effective way to excite and persuade their consumers?

Although video communication tools may not get rid of social media marketing altogether, (there would be no point in getting rid of such a successful form of relationship marketing),it may however take over social media in terms of the time and effort the retailer would spend developing it. If a retailer can optimise profits and build relationships with consumers via video communication much more successfully, it would be an obvious choice for retailers to place increased effort into the technique.

Youtube are beginning to form affiliate relationships with businesses whereby their logo is displayed on the companies page in return for their video upload tools. Many other video upload sites are also seeing the effect of gaining relationships with retailers, as in the future, these relationships may prove prosperous for both parties.

Maybe video communication will not live up to the hype that is currently surrounding it. The costs of developing video in comparison to writing a status update on twitter are obviously much different, and maybe this will be the factor that will deter retailers from developing the function. Yet, the potential profits that could be gained from such an innovative and interactive viewing technique could prove it to be the best thing the retailer ever committed to.

French Connection has developed their video section of their website and its really beautiful. There are six product videos for both men and women and one only has to roll the mouse over the video link for it to play in 'Le Cinema.'

Only time will tell how this might progress. Id be interested to hear your thoughts on this topic, feel free to let me know what you think!

Victoria Magrath, 11th November 2010.

No comments:

Post a Comment