3 trends to pioneer in content, technology and retail

Brands are increasingly selling and communicating online, and compelling content has become increasingly important as a result. Emakina takes you through 3 trends that will surely catch the attention of your consumer, and with which you will leave the competition behind.

Live social shopping
What is? Most brands now use their social networks as sales channels, but social commerce offers a great new opportunity: live shopping. Brands promote their products on live streaming shows, often with influencers for outreach, validation, and creative input, and viewers can immediately purchase the items. Social commerce combines the convenience of online shopping with the network effect of social media, and live shopping adds the power of impulse buying. Who does it? One of the pioneers of live shopping is Alibaba, after which most Asian brands also started using it and now it has almost become a permanent part of the marketing mix. But enough Western brands like Adidas and Tommy Hilfiger have now embraced the marketing tool. How can I start? Think about which social platform is most valuable to your brand and start to understand what drives your target audience to buy. Look at existing opportunities on Instagram and Facebook, and explore new opportunities. By the end of 2022, YouTube will roll out new features around the world that will enable live shopping. Our social commerce specialists are eager to think along with you.

What is? An omnichannel strategy still too often considers the offline and online worlds as separate islands, but its strength lies in optimal integration: figitalization. The modern consumer is hyper-connected and expects a completely seamless experience across all channels. Expect to not only get real-life support online, but also experience a digital in-store experience. Farfetch’s retail innovation arm announced the Store of the Future in 2018, a series of innovations aimed at digitizing the shopping experience for high street retailers that are still relevant today. From logins that digitally register a customer in a store, to providing sellers with purchase history, brand preferences, and browsing behavior. Imagine that the sweater you have saved online is already hanging in the dressing room when you enter the store, ideal right?

Who does it? Brands like Nike are actively building an ecosystem where customers can connect with the brand across multiple levels, channels, online and offline. Burberry’s concept store in Shenzen celebrates experiential shopping and aims to integrate social media and gaming into a physical retail environment. Augmented reality allows customers to virtually try on makeup and clothing, offline through magic mirrors and online through a virtual try-on. The Korean SK-II can even scan a face and recommend skin care. Tablet-assisted sales allow you to connect your store stock with your online stock, and Amazon Go virtual checkout allows customers to leave the store without physically paying. Endless possibilities to connect online and offline. How can I start? Try to understand what your customers value and need from you as a brand, so you know where to focus your energy. By using online customer data, you can deliver an increasingly relevant experience, both online and in store.

Internet 3.0
What is? Web 3.0 represents the next generation of the Internet. After a first generation of just content consumption and a second generation of consumption and creation, this latest iteration adds blockchain to transfer the power and influence of big tech to individual users. From digital collections of NFTs to land purchases in the Metaverse, you can literally become part of a virtual world. Currently, as a brand, it is mainly a great tool to be pioneers, to offer immersive content to your target group in an innovative way and to capture the attention of the press. But there is also growing criticism that these ideals cannot be realized. And adoption is slower than desired, which is why Meta is considering promoting Metaverse with physical stores. It sounds like a paradox, but it is actually true. Who does it? Consumers need to express themselves in the same way that they do in real life, which is why fashion brands continue to be at the forefront in this field, creating stores or fashion shows in the virtual world. Many brands are engaged in NFTs. Nike is investing heavily in growth and recently even bought the RTFKT agency that specializes in creating NFTs. Subway and Lay’s have jointly launched five ‘Crispy Puffer Jacket’ digital NFTs, so that your snacks are also fashionable in the virtual world. How can I start? Projects like this combine creativity and technology at a high level, so if you don’t have that at home, it’s best to find a partner who can help you with both. Emakina is happy to help you. Look at inspiring examples and discover where you can add value as a brand and be truly relevant. An NFT is a first step, events in the Metaverse will follow.

Emakina believes that as a retailer you need to keep an eye on trends, to know what is on your customer’s mind. We’re happy to help you develop a future-proof content strategy, and as a full-service agency, we’re also happy to take care of implementation. From video production to copywriting, AR and VR.

Emakina is part of EPAM, a pioneer in technology and has worked for more than half of all the brands on the Forbes 2000 list during the last 25 years. Together we work for brands like Burberry, Adidas, Nike, Ecco, Kitchenaid on various projects.

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