The way customers shop has changed.
Actually, the way everybody does everything has changed. Why? Because of those glorious little devices we call smartphones.
People are browsing TikTok at stoplights, swiping on dating apps first thing in the morning, and buying waterproof phone cases so they can tweet from the shower. Social media and smartphones have sent us into a world of constant stimulation, entertainment, and distraction.
And all that distraction can spell disaster for retailers.
Not just because of online shopping. We’re all very well-versed on the ways online shopping is hurting traditional retail, and if you’re reading this blog, I suspect you’re the kind of smart, savvy retail marketer who already knows ways to counter it.
No, this is about a different way smartphones are subtly chipping away at retail revenue.
To put it bluntly, your shoppers are bored.
When was the last time you took a stroll around your store? What did you see? You were probably looking for pristine operations and employees following your policies to a tee. But did you take a good look at your customers? What were they all doing?
That’s right. The classic neck bending, thumb reaching, top-of-head showing activity of scrolling on a smartphone.
You might wonder what’s the big deal. Is it really harmful for customers to text family or browse Instagram while they’re shopping?
The answer is yes. It’s not just that your customers are on their phones; it’s what they’re doing on their phones.
It’s called showrooming. This is a trend where consumers will browse products at an offline location, perhaps trying on clothes or getting a feel for a product’s quality. However, instead of buying the item, they use their smartphone to find a cheaper one online. A 2012 report noted that 35% of U.S. consumers admit to showrooming. That’s 35% of retail sales that walked right out of your door without buying anything.
Efforts to combat showrooming have been met with resistance from shoppers. Some fashion retailers have introduced “fitting fees,” where customers must pay to try something on and only get that money back if they make an in-store purchase. Larger retailers with gigantic infrastructures have tried price matching and in-store exclusives.
But as the old saying goes, you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. So we’ve got a better idea on combating showrooming and keeping your customers engaged with your products throughout the shopping process.
Your customers are on their phones because they crave video content, so give them video content in your store instead.
In-store TV advertising could transform how your customers engage with your products.
In-store advertising isn’t a new concept. Have you ever walked by a bar and seen the drink specials for the night written on an a-frame outside? Congrats, you now know the power of in-store advertising (or maybe we should call this one on-sidewalk advertising).
And it’s not just bars with chalkboards outside. Hanging posters, sticking discount stickers on products, and end caps in grocery stores are all examples of in-store advertising. In-store video advertising takes this to the next level.
The appetite for video is huge and trending upward. Check out these stats from Social Media Today.
- "Tweets with video see 10x more engagement than those without - and Promoted Tweets with videos save more than 50% on cost-per-engagement
- LinkedIn users are 20x more likely to share a video on the platform than any other type of post
- Pinterest users are 2.6x more likely to make a purchase after viewing brand video content on the platform
- Video generates more engagement than any other content type on Instagram”
The evidence is clear. Video content drives engagement, commands attention, and leads to purchases.
Now that you know the why, let’s talk about the what.
What could your retail business do with in-store video advertising?
1) Promote limited in-store promotions that drive urgency.
Let’s paint a picture: you’re shopping for jeans at your favorite store and you see that they have a limited-time offer of buy one get one half off for their jeans that weekend. At that moment, you have a choice- buy one pair of jeans for the regular price, or spend just a little more and get two pairs of jeans. If you do end up just buying one pair, even though you’re technically spending less money, you will likely feel as though you’ve missed out on a great deal.
This is an excellent example of how in-store promotions can encourage sales for your customers. When they find out that there’s a limited-time offer on certain items, there will be a newfound sense of urgency in their shopping experience. Everyone wants to find ways to save money, so convincing people that they’re getting a great deal is super important for retailers.
2) Present lifestyle content that makes purchasing attractive.
If you’ve ever had a group of young adults enter your store, then you should be aware of just how important smartphones have become to the newer generations. Nearly every single person entering your store is holding onto a smartphone. There’s also a good chance that while shopping, your customers will end up taking out their phones and start scrolling through social media. This is how vital lifestyle content has become to our society today.
Showing lifestyle content through Instagram pictures or TikTok videos throughout your store allows customers to see your products in a new light. By cultivating trendy and fashionable lifestyle content, you are creating advertisements that will take your shopper’s attention away from their smartphones.
Your guests will be able to imagine the type of lifestyle your product presents. Show young adults enjoying a fun bonfire with friends in that trendy new top you want them to buy, or show a father building a deck for his family using the lumber your store sells.
3) Give calls to action that further the shopping experience.
Have you ever gone to a store and had a retail associate ask if you need help looking for something? If you’ve ever been to a brick-and-mortar store, then the answer is probably yes.
It’s a smart business move, too. Sales associates put a human face to the sales process, and your in-store TV advertising can encourage your guests to interface with your sales team.
Fitting rooms are also a great way to convince customers that spending time (and money) at your store is worthwhile. According to retail expert Bob Phibbs, shoppers who enter a fitting room are 70% more likely to make a purchase.
By adding in-store monitors that encourage customers to go try on clothes, you are increasing the likelihood of that consumer buying something while simultaneously decreasing the need for workers to bug your shoppers continuously.
And that’s not it. In-store video advertising can push your customers to all sorts of activities that push them closer to a purchase. Whether it’s directions to a fitting room, instructions on how to contact a sales associate for help, or mentioning the location of particular items in the store, this form of video ad will keep your guests focused on their buyer journey through your location.
4) Provide product education that convinces your customer that you’re an expert.
If you’re in the market for a brand new TV, it’s improbable that you’d go to your nearest florist for tips on what brand to get. When you’re the customer, you want to be sure that the vendor you’re buying from is knowledgeable and well-informed when it comes to the product you’re buying. Presenting in-depth information about your products on in-store advertisements is a subtle but clear way of showing your consumers that you know what you’re talking about.
Making sure your customers are making educated decisions is also a great way of ensuring that they are content with your product post-purchase. Giving your customers a lively, engaging, and simple way to recognize facts about your products shows them that you are a trustworthy and reliable vendor.
5 ) Set a shopper-friendly environment that relaxes and focuses the guest.
You want your customers to feel confident and comfortable in your store. Several brick-and-mortar stores will go down in history for having terrible customer service or snooty attitudes. The last thing you want is for your consumers to feel so anxious about entering your store that they skip it altogether.
In-store video advertisements that portray positive messages or set a relaxed tone are essential to having positive customer retention. Creating a friendly, easy-going atmosphere through these advertisements can welcome your shoppers and help them prioritize what they’re looking for.
How do you set up in-store video advertising?
Since your in-store video advertising will be going to many locations, you’ll essentially be setting up a sort of 24 hour online TV channel that will connect all of your retail locations. This sounds complicated, but it really isn’t. If your store managers can handle connecting their own TVs to their smart devices at home, they can do it in a store.
Your in-store televisions or other digital signage systems will simply connect to a website or streaming channels that’s broadcasting your content. You or your technology vendor will upload and host the content through a management system, allowing you to control what is seen inside all of your locations at once.
The streaming provider will host, manage, and broadcast the content, and your connected TVs or digital signage systems will receive the signal and play it in your stores. Voila! You’ve now got a fully functional customer engagement strategy running in all your stores.
In conclusion, video content will continue to dominate your shopper’s attention. You can either have that attention on your products or away from your products.
By leveraging in-store TV advertising, you’re giving your customers increased reasons to engage with your promotions, your staff, and more opportunities to become a paying customer.
To learn more about broadcasting purchase-driving content into your retail stores, schedule a free consultation with Jumbo today.