As COVID-19 tipped the retail world on its head, we have seen social commerce emerge as a distinct shopping channel. Driven by the need for change and innovation in the retail space, coupled with increased consumer appetite for digital shopping channels, brands across the globe have started to look to the success of social commerce throughout Asia Pacific.
Social commerce sales in APAC reached $2 trillion USD in 2019, and market analysts expect that figure to double by 2024. Growth has been driven by key shopping events including the renowned 11.11 Single’s Day, where many retailers drive excitement and urgency through livestreaming shopping events and flash sales. Leading APAC market players including TaoBao Live, Lazada and group shopping platform Pinduoduo have reaped much of the rewards from this growing retail channel so far, yet with the launch of Facebook and Instagram shops, it’s likely that social commerce is about to go global. So how can brands maximize their social commerce success?
1. Think entertainment first, commerce second
Consumers turn to social channels as a means for entertainment first and foremost, with shopping needs often an afterthought prompted by social content. Brands must create entirely unique strategies for their social commerce channels, which may speak to a different audience than their physical retail or ecommerce campaigns. By bringing a healthy dose of entertainment to consumers in a fresh and authentic way, brands will be able to build engagement and drive sales among a new audience, while building loyalty with existing customers.
2. Learn each platform’s intricacies
Not all social platforms are created equal. Rather than adopting a one-size-fits-all approach to social commerce, it’s important to take the time to understand each platform fully – even if that means rolling out on only one or two social platforms to start with. Each platform will have their own best practices and nuances to learn, and audiences are likely to be discerning and dismissive of brands who don’t take the time to understand what content truly resonates on each platform. Taking it slow and steady will allow brands to build highly engaged audiences from the start.
3. Lean on influencers
While influencers were valuable to brands’ marketing strategies before, they will now be integral to driving social commerce success. Choosing to partner with macro- or micro- influencers who align with your brand will drive awareness, engagement, and loyalty among key consumers. In addition, with the immediate and live nature of many social commerce platforms, leveraging influencers with vast and engaged audiences will ensure brands are reaching the right audiences when hosting their social shopping events.
At Tag, we create consumer-centric marketing campaigns that shift the dial on key metrics. Backed by the knowledge of our team of ecommerce experts, we are uniquely positioned to help support brands in their offline-to-online retail acceleration. We provide end-to-end marketing solutions informed by data and insights, enabling our partners to stay relevant and agile in today’s constantly changing marketplace.