Amazon Opens Program For Creating “Watch & Shop” Apps For Fire TV

What Happened
Amazon is launching a program that invites video content owners to create shoppable streaming apps for their content on Fire TV streaming products. The so-called “Watch and Shop apps,” which now has its own section under the Apps tab, allow Fire TV users to view and purchase a curated list of items relevant to the video they are watching. Because Fire TV viewers are already logged in with their Amazon account, they can purchase the item directly from the product description page or add it to the shopping cart for later.

What Brands Need To Do
Buying products from inside a video is not a new concept — YouTube introduced a click-to-buy feature in January 2009. But with more online retailers start experimenting with interactive video each year, it becomes clear that simply dropping a link or a “Buy Now” button into a video ad is effective enough in converting customers. The friction of putting in the payment information alone is usually enough to stop shoppers in their path.

Obviously, this new program offers brands a great opportunities to explore shoppable content as both a new promotional tool and a direct sales channel. For example, a popular makeup tutorial app can create a Watch and Shop app that displays the cosmetic products that are being demoed in that particular video segment. Of course, this being an Amazon program, it would require brands to sell their products on

Currently, this program is invite-only, and brands that wish to apply will need to have a Youtube channel with a minimum of 15 videos, a YouTube developer key, and, most importantly, a list of products you would like to feature in your videos, along with their unique identification number (ASIN) as listed on For more information on how to apply, please check the source.

Shoppable video content has been undoubtedly on the rise for the past few years. It is especially popular among fashion and beauty brands. Birchbox, Dr. Brandt Skincare, Beautyblender, and SheaMoisture are among the first ones to try out a shoppable video layer created by video company MikMak that enables users to purchase branded products on Instagram Stories and Snap Ads with a single URL.


Source: Amazon Developer Blog

Liquor Brand Diageo And Amazon Team Up To Create A Shoppable Show

What Happened
British alcoholic beverages company Diageo teamed up with Amazon for a shoppable video series to promote its “Reserve” portfolio of premium liquor brands. Titled “World Class List,” the series is done in the style of an unscripted travel documentary that sees a host visiting and tasting locally flavored cocktails in five cities around the world: Barcelona, Mexico City, San Francisco, Sydney, and Taipei.

The show is now available on Amazon Prime Video in the U.S., U.K., and Germany, with further video-on-demand partners and markets to follow. Curiously, the shoppable version is not currently available in the U.S., but U.K. and German viewers can click on embedded links to shop the liquors featured in the show from Diageo’s ecommerce site.

What Brands Need To Do
This is an interesting case of a CPG brand leveraging an OTT streaming platform to distribute shoppable branded content and directly drive sales. Amazon Prime currently boasts over 76.2 million users worldwide, which makes it a valuable channel for brands to put their branded content on. In addition, recent reports claim that Amazon Prime Video is coming to Apple TV soon, which should further expand its reach.

For more in-depth analysis how brands can leverage global mega-channels and niche micro-channels to effectively reach key audiences, check out the Global Culture section of our Outlook 2017.


Source: AdAge

Header image courtesy of Diageo’s YouTube

L’Oréal Canada Taps Shoppable Video To Enhance Influencer Marketing

What Happened
Aiming to accelerate its ecommerce growth and enhance its influencer marketing program, L’Oréal Canada is teaming up with Toronto-based mobile tech firm dubdub to leverage its  “dubcandy” app to convert viewers and boost online sales. The app supports shoppable video content that can link out to retailer websites, and L’Oréal is looking to use it to set up a new compensation model for influencer campaigns based on conversions.

What Brands Should Do
WIth the recent explosion of makeup tutorial videos and online influencers, many beauty brands are figuring out the best way to integrate influencer marketing into their existing content strategies. This move by L’Oréal suggests that one way to do so may be combining it with shoppable content. Not only does it allows L’Oréal to monetize video content across their influencer network, it also provides a quantitative way to measure the performance of their influencer content.

How We Can Help
The Lab has extensive experience working with beauty and CPG clients to create and implement retail experiences that utilize social and influencer content. The recently-opened NYX Cosmetics store at Union Square, featuring a “Colorcast” digital sculpture that displays NYX’s social content in fascinating, color-coordinated combinations, is a proud showcase of our team’s work in this space and elevated NYX as one of the most innovative digital beauty brands of 2016 named by WWD. If you’d like to learn more about how your brand can develop an updated retail strategy and implement digital-driven solutions to modernize your retail experience, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland ([email protected]) to schedule a visit to the Lab.


Source: PressWire

Ted Baker Taps Google Voice For An Interactive In-Store Experience

What Happened
Fashion retailer Ted Baker is teaming up with Google for a voice-activated, in-store experience that leverages Google Voice to engage with shoppers. Customers visiting Ted Baker stores can open the Google Voice app, utter the phrases printed on the store windows, and receive clues to unlock rewards. The feature is geo-fenced so only shoppers in Ted Baker stores will have access to it. Besides this interactive experience, Ted Baker also created a shoppable film which will be distributed through retail partners and department stores to play on their websites.

What Brands Need To Do
By tapping into the voice activation enabled by Google Voice, Ted Baker devised a fun way to engage with customers and reward them for visiting stores. Together with the shoppable film, this initiative is illustrative of the fashion retailer’s willingness to venture beyond traditional marketing channels and explore newer forms of marketing. At a time when consumers are growing tired of ads and increasingly turning to ad-free services and ad-blockers, brands need to experiment with new approaches such as interactive store experiences and shoppable content to effectively reach their audience.

The Lab has extensive experience in designing interactive store experiences for beauty and fashion brands to engage customers. Our recent work with NYX Cosmetics includes a digital beauty bar that incorporates social and mobile elements into a sampling experience. If you’d like to advance your strategy to reach connected shoppers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland ([email protected]) to schedule a visit to the Lab.


Source: Glossy

New Google Search Ad Wants You To “Shop The Look”

What Happened
Google has started testing a new search ad format that aims to sell mobile shoppers on curated looks. Dubbed “shop the look,” the new ad format is designed to appear when users search for broad queries such as “wedding outfit” or “cocktail attire,” and present them with buyable looks sourced from a network of partners, including Curalate,, and Yahoo-owned Polyvore.

What Brands Need To Do
Earlier this summer, Google introduced a new Showcase Shopping ad format that surfaces shoppable items when users search for apparel keywords. As the search giant continues to improve its buyable ad products and making them more visually driven, retailers and fashion brands should seize the opportunity presented by these new ad products and leverage them to reach online shoppers.


Source: Search Engine Land

HGTV And Food Network Launch Shoppable Apps For Amazon Fire TV

What Happened
HGTV and Food Network are launching four streaming apps on Amazon Fire TV that allow viewers to purchase the products featured in their shows without putting down the remote. With these new apps, viewers will be able to browse products in a small side window without pausing the shows and, should they be interested in certain items, click on them to see more information and even complete the purchase. All transactions will be processed by Amazon and Prime members can opt for free two-day shipping for eligible products.

The two cable networks, both owned by Scripps Networks Interactive, also scored launch partners for each of their new apps, with LG sponsoring HGTV’s Smart Solutions app and Bose sponsoring Food Network’s Summer Entertaining app.

What Brands Need To Do
Amazon has been experimenting with shoppable content on Fire TV as it looks to expand its ecommerce prowess into the streaming space. The home and lifestyle programs of HGTV and Food Network are natural fits for shoppable TV, as they can organically integrate a number of CPG and household products. For those brands, these new apps present a new channel to reach an audience that is increasingly shifting from linear TV to on-demand viewing.

To learn more about how brands can reach viewers on OTT platforms with sponsorships and product integrations, please check out the Appified TV section in our Outlook 2016.


Source: AdWeek


Facebook Now Showing Ads To Non-Users, Testing Shoppable Video Ads

What Happened
Facebook continues to take strides toward challenging Google for the top spot in online advertising as the company started to serve ads to non-users on Thursday. Previously, Facebook’s ads on third party websites or mobile apps, powered by the Facebook Audience Network, would not be visible to users that are not logged into Facebook. According to the Wall Street Journal, the social network is using a mix of cookie tracking, its own buttons and plugins, and patterns within its massive user database to help advertisers target non-users with more relevant advertising.

In related news, The Information reports that Facebook is working on shoppable video ads, which will allow users to buy products highlighted in videos on Facebook. One tap on an item featured in a buyable video would reveal more information about the product and another tap would send users to the retailer’s website to complete the purchase. Facebook has not confirmed nor denied this new ad product.

What Brands Need To Do
Facebook has long enabled its Audience Network to reach users outside of Facebook properties, and this change should help advertisers reach even more people across various digital platforms. As Facebook continues to expand its advertising machine, it is important that brand marketers heed the new ad products that Facebook offers and leverage Facebook’s massive reach and targeting capability to connect with their targeted online audiences.


Source: TechCrunch & The Information

Shoppable Ads Coming To Snapchat

What Happened
Snapchat has been steadily building out its ad products to attract advertisers, adding support for branded content and third-party traffic measurement to its platform in recent weeks. Today, the popular messaging app started testing shoppable ads, with Target and Lancôme being the first two brands to test this new ad format with placements in Cosmopolitan’s Discover channel. Users are instructed to swipe up on those ads, which then pull up the mobile sites of these two brands where users can shop for the featured products without leaving the Snapchat app.

What Brands Need To Do
Over the past few months, Snapchat has been experimenting with a variety of ads that ask consumers to swipe up for more content. In February, mobile game Cookie Jam became the first advertiser to run app-install ads on Snapchat. As consumer attention, especially that of the younger generations, increasingly shifts from traditional media to mobile apps, it is imperative that brands follow suit and reallocate their ad budgets. As Snapchat continues to diversify its ad products and make its platform more brand-friendly, we expect more brand advertisers aiming to reach the coveted young Millennials to give it a shot.


Source: AdWeek

Net-a-Porter Puts Shoppable Content In Branded Print Magazine

What Happened
Net-a-Porter’s in-house print magazine, Porter, may has relatively small circulations, but it boasts purchases through the e-retailer’s website and its affiliate brands with buyable content. On average, an issue of Porter features 500 piece of buyable items, enabled by Net-a-Porter’s mobile app. When readers flip through Porter’s pages, they can scan each page to find more information on the items presented on the page, as well as tapping on the buy buttons to order the items within the app. The London-based fashion e-retailer first launched the magazine in February 2014, and, based on a survey it conducted last year, the buyable items had been scanned 85,000 times, an interaction rate of 78%.

What Brands Need To Do
This shoppable magazine from Net-a-Porter provides a great examples in how brands can leverage their branded content to reach customers and convert those eyeballs into sales. As consumers become more and more comfortable with shopping on smartphones, with mobile commerce now making up over 30% of all U.S. ecommerce sales, it is up to retail brands to figure out new way to use buyable content on mobile to move shoppers down the sales funnel.

For more details on how retailers can better utilize customer data to connect with shoppers across channels. check out the Boundless Retail section in our Outlook 2016.


Source: Digiday

Header image courtesy of

How Bravo Is Making Second Screens Shoppable

What Happened
Bravo is populating second screens with shoppable content. The NBCUniversal subsidiary launched The Lookbook last week, a microsite with buyable fashion and beauty content tied to the looks featured in its new series The Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce. The site features click-to-buy episode clips and blog posts about the looks featured in the show, updated weekly as new episodes air.

What Brands Need To Do
87% of consumers now use a second-screen device as they watch TV, according to a recent report from Accenture. And shoppable content provides a great way for media owners and brands to bridge content and commerce. Other media owners and content creators should take a clue from Bravo’s initiatives and build a shoppable second-screen experience for their content as well. And brands need to work with media owners to make sure their products featured in their content are duly included on the second-screen sites and easily shoppable.

Source: AdWeek