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A starring role for your site

Adding a video element to your website can help to build a closer relationship with your customers.

My-Wardrobe.com Fly53.com, Riverisland.co.uk - they all have it. So why is every-one from brands to high street retailers adding a video element to their site, and should you be doing it too?

Looking at the aforementioned sites, they all do video very differently. My-Wardrobe has My-TV, a channel showing video presentations of product online. The online retailer was looking for a presenter who was “aspirational yet attainable” and believes it has found that person in the form of fashion stylist Antonia O’Brien.

O’Brien, along with guest fashion editors and designers, helps to bring the product to life online and adds a more personal feel that allows My-Wardrobe’s customers to build a (virtual) relationship with the presenter - similar to that formed between a shopper and the owner of an independent boutique. This virtual relationship helps to build trust between the customer and the presenter, and therefore trust in the site.

My-Wardrobe says the video content has resulted in a real uplift in sales. It also allows the site to promote slower-moving items (or those not seen in their best light in still images) that customers may otherwise have missed.

Young fashion brand Fly53 has a very different approach to video. The idea behind its online videos was hatched when it used a film director as the photographer for one of its shoots and he suggested using the shoot’s models and sets to also record a moving look book.

All of Fly53’s videos have a dark, unsettling underworld feel, with scenes involving guns, fights and naked bodies. They are not personal and aim to build absolutely no relationship with the customer, but they do make an impact. And the user won’t forget the brand that produced them.

River Island TV is an online video channel that brings the River Island brand to life - showing footage of everything from press days to photo shoots, and it uses “style insiders” - the retailer’s panel of bloggers - to do the presenting.

These videos show the glamorous side of the fashion business and River Island knows this is just the kind of content that its target audience will be hooked on.
The videos use product and celebrity to attract the user and make them think (even if they are not completely aware of it) about whether that dress/skirt/pair of shoes would suit them. This pushes customers back to the transactional area of the site and hopefully on to the checkout.

So whether it is to build traffic, drive sales or increase brand awareness, all ecommerce sites should be thinking about adding a video element to
their proposition.

But before doing so, just make sure you know your aims and your audience, and produce films that your customers can relate to.

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