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Brand Strategy Live Shopping Ecommerce

How to deliver an elevated, authentic customer experience through live shopping

By Leanne Fitz, Digital producer

FREIM Studio

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The Drum Network article

This content is produced by The Drum Network, a paid-for membership club for CEOs and their agencies who want to share their expertise and grow their business.

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January 26, 2023 | 6 min read

Leanne Fitz of Freim Studio roots for authentic, imperfect customer experiences in the form of live shopping.

Paper shopping bag

Are live shopping experiences the next big thing after user-generated content? / Lucrezia Carnelos via Unsplash

The importance of authenticity across marketing has become increasingly prevalent over the last year. Now more than ever, consumers want the brands they follow to present themselves in a way that is authentic and relatable.

The use of user-generated content (UGC) is one way in which brands are satisfying this. More recently, live commerce is being deployed alongside UGC to provide customers with an elevated shopping experience. But how?

The value of authenticity

A massive 90% of consumers say that authenticity is important to them. But why? More and more, consumers, especially gen Z, are concerned with brands’ backstories. They want to know what a brand stands for. Consumers have become more socially conscious and more aware of marketing strategies and techniques, making them increasingly aware of promotional tactics and less likely to take them at face value.

Meanwhile, UGC has proved an extremely effective marketing tactic among brands, because it feels real. Equally, the rise of TikTok has demonstrated the desire for authentic and fun content, showing that, sometimes, a simple piece of content without added bells and whistles can connect with audiences most.

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Authenticity through live shopping

When you think of live shopping, do you think of authenticity? Probably not. You probably think of someone trying to sell as much stock as possible in a limited amount of time. While this may be true, live shopping can be an extremely effective channel through which to create a feeling of authenticity for customers – if it's done right.

The beauty of a live shopping event is that, well, it’s live. Things happen during a live event that wouldn’t happen during a pre-recorded, polished broadcast. Maybe the host says something funny or stumbles over their words; that’s okay. It’s all part of the experience that makes consumers love watching live broadcasts. It makes it feel real.

Did you know that live shopping can reduce return rates? It’s all down to the fact that consumers feel they are shown the real product and know exactly what to expect before purchasing. It gives audiences the chance to connect with a brand and feel included and valued. Here are three tips to get you started.

1. Don’t fear minor mistakes

Mistakes happen during live shows. They shouldn’t be a bad thing. In fact, they help create the feeling of authenticity. Of course, you don’t want large mistakes to happen (like internet issues or your host misnaming a flagship product), but a few giggles along the way won’t hurt.

2. Don’t pre-record

At Freim, we've seen many 'pretend' live shows that have been pre-recorded. Let us tell you: it's obvious, and more likely to feel staged and inauthentic for your audience. We’re not saying you can’t pre-record parts of a live show to take away the struggles of live productions; but you won’t get the same out of it, and your audience will probably notice. If you can, go live.

3. Utilize real people and micro-influencers

Having real people as part of your live show can be a great way to make sure it feels authentic. They may come into the show as company employees, specialists, or people with authority within the industry that can help increase credibility and trust, and make the event more interesting. Just like UGC, this provides social proof and a sense of truth. Influencers can also assist in this; just make sure they resonate with your brand's values.

Rather than only implementing UGC within marketing strategies to enhance authenticity, brands should now also be looking at live shopping. When implemented with the right strategy, live shopping gives brands the opportunity to provide an authentic experience to their customers; providing them with the experiences that they crave while seeing a significant return on investment.

Brand Strategy Live Shopping Ecommerce

Content by The Drum Network member:

FREIM Studio

A digital studio specialized in video and live shopping content that aims to join brands and creators to craft amazing campaigns. We are FIRST Live Shopping niche...

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