At the recent Streaming Media West 2009 show, Rico Nasol, Content Team Senior Manager at Zappos.com spoke on the video commerce session about what they're doing with video and how effective it is. It's so interesting that we had to talk about it as well. Since they had $1.2 Billion in sales last year, they seem to know a thing or two.
Rico was interviewed by Peter Cervieri of ScribeMedia.org at the show (see video below) and talked about how they're using video to drive sales. They use the video to describe, use and demonstrate the products with real Zappos employees and not models or actors. Those videos are said to have a sales impact of 6 to 30% which has prompted Zappos to strive for 50,000 videos next year (they have about 8,000 currently). That will include 10 fully working studios for 2010 to handle all of it.
What's their secret? Well if we had to guess we'd say it's a combination of how they're presenting the products with who they are using to do it. The real people stand out and each has their own personality which comes through in their videos. That gives you the sense that they truly are real and, while being paid to make the videos, not paid just to say what they're told to.
Rico also said that the personality and person most definitely have to suit the product. So you can't pull in a corporate lawyer and have him talk about skater gear or how his Big Star Beanie keeps his head warm while he's grinding down a handrail at the local library.
Additionally, last month Zappos and rolled out "Engagement Pages" for specific brands (see Nike example) where the videos engage users with clickable overlays. These overlays allow users to shop within the video content, pull up additional information and click through to product specific landing pages. Users can also record product video testimonials directly from the engagement pages.
If you are interested in learning more about online video for commerce, stay tuned this week as our friend Justin Foster, Founder of the Video Commerce Consortium, has provided us with some great material that will help to outline best practices for creating e-commerce video that sells.