Live video and e-commerce

The top item in this report on China e-commerce trends from Coresight Research makes for interesting reading when you pair it with the new accepted (and forced) norm of how many of us have had to interact with family, friends, colleagues, peers, or network and even complete strangers.

It is even more interesting when you consider the report was published in January this year, before we all had to download Zoom or Teams.

This top item states that video livestreaming is likely to become an even more important sales medium in 2020.

In many ways, China’s e-commerce platforms, functions and consumer uptake are unparalleled. (I am guessing too there may be less regulations.) E-commerce, in its many guises, is far more part of the cultural norm, especially around video.

Outside of China, the cultural norm is changing – online shopping is up for obvious reasons and our zoom meetings or FaceTime video calls means that more people have been ‘livestreaming’ in some shape or form. Doing things via video has become far more of a natural activity to those that have the device/s and the connection to do so.

This to me represents some potentially interesting momentum shifts.

Already we see outfits like events and health and wellness companies scrambling to a live video streaming environment – often clunky and rarely complementing with other digital content or interaction points that builds out the consumer experience.  Events companies for example are puzzling over how to emulate the community or networking capabilities that live in-person physical events bring.

Building out this thought, here is the FT on L’Oreal’s shifting digital strategy.

Now online customers in say France may not just yet behave like the Chinese counterparts described in the Coresight research nor value the quantity and style of on-screen content.

It isn’t that difficult though to imagine L’Oreal hosting multiple live video streaming functions – perhaps even at its most basic, hosting beauty sessions once reserved for the shop floor, customer Q and A or other tips with real people talking in real time and easy activation points for those talked about products – much like many of the influencer videos on YT but instead a live video based interaction and activity hosted on-platform.

That’s a path that builds up not only e-commerce activity but also community and its data.

So as companies, and even media companies with video at their core, continue their digital transformation we can expect to see more technology and capabilities around live video.

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