TapCommerce

Decoded Fashion Meetup in London, January 2015

On Wednesday’s evening, fashion and retail’s social-media savviest flocked to Twitter’s UK HQ for Decoded Fashion’s first London Meetup of the year. The topic of discussion was one surely to be at the forefront of many brand’s minds going into 2015: how can new technologies help brands turn content into cash? Well positioned to answer that question were the evening’s four speakers, who each offered their own insights as to how we can move beyond mere hashtags when it comes to making a return on digital investment (although, of course, there had to be a hashtag – check out #DFMeetUp for running commentary from our network). For those of you who couldn’t make it, here’s our highlights from the discussion: from #TwitterFashion, to deeplinking ads, to taggable video and shoppable Instagram.

Kira O’Connor – Twitter Fashion

“Information, insight, and a little bit of personality once in a while.” That’s the magic formula if you want to get a follow from fashionable Whole Foods fangirl, Kira O’Connor. Head of Twitter’s Media Partnerships, O’Connor caught our attention with some seriously impressive stats with regards Twitter’s potential reach for fashion brands. With 47% of users having bought from a brand as a result of following them on Twitter, there’s no excuse for brands to be getting their content strategy wrong on the micro-blogging site. With vines and images likely to gain 2-5 times more engagement, one way to show Twitter nous is to use the multiple photo upload function: O’Connor used the example of Vogue’s red carpet snaps during the Met Gala.

Tarika Soni – TapCommerce

Next up, Tarika Soni of Tap Commerce had some tips for app developers and advertisers looking to hear more about the field of app retargeting in the e-commerce industry. TapCommerce, which was acquired by Twitter last summer, is a mobile advertising tech company that specialises in app retargeting. Aiming to retain user’s attention through in-app targeted advertisements, the technology aims to tap audiences just at the right moment. As Soni assured us, they’re not “those stalker guys on Facebook” – rather, through deep-linking and real-time segmentation, they can offer reminders to users in-app. So, next time that pair of shoes is floundering in your basket, there’ll be plenty of relevant calls to action to complete the checkout.

Steve Callanan – Wirewax

The Wirewax presentation was one of the best received of the evening, with CEO Steve Callanan waxing lyrical about “the most powerful interactive video platform in the universe” (his words, not ours). Wirewax is the taggable video platform that has been most enthusiastically taken up by the fashion and retail industries, allowing users to add moving ‘tags’ to any person or object within video content. Those tags can then link to extra content or opportunities to buy (directly or externally). Clients creating shoppable video experiences include Coach, Pepe Jeans and NY cashmere brand Ivory Row – in a neat twist, the latter allowed you to buy directly from the video, without having to click-through externally. Allowing viewers to act on impulse, the platform has seen amazing results – on one Southern Living video (a niche client, as Callanan admitted), the content saw a 90% click-through rate with 90% of people then buying the product.

Dave Murray – LIKEtoKNOW.it

Last but not least, Executive VP of International Operations at rewardStyle Dave Murray gave the audience insights into the company’s new LIKEtoKNOW.it tool. The tool allows digital publishers such as high-profile bloggers and luxury mags to make their Instagram shoppable. Like most good ideas, it’s pretty simple: after users register their Instagram handle online, each post they like by an affiliated blogger will generate an email with the links to products to purchase. Impressively, 95% of users have opted to receive their email content immediately when they ‘like’ a post – demonstrating the fact that users want product information as soon as possible, without interrupting the flow of their daily browse.

Check out Decoded Fashion’s Twitter and #DFMeetUp for more insights from the night.

Reported by: Claire Healy

Considering how much time we all spend on social media, it’s quite surprising that it’s our least favourite online channel to shop on. This might be to do with the fact that these channels are not fully optimised for in-site shopping -at least not yet. However, recently there’s been a flurry of news stories cropping up about imminent monetisation efforts of large social media channels – could this be the beginning of a social shopping era?

Google Plus found a remedy to this issue by offering shoppable Google Hangouts. This allowed Topman to make their January AW14 catwalk show shoppable (263 people watched), and ASOS to host a shoppable Nike Airmax hangout back in March (376 people watched). Yet the participation numbers are still relatively low, especially considering how large the customer base is for both Topman and ASOS.

Unlike Google Plus, Facebook do not offer a way of directly selling items via their platform – but we can expect this to change soon. Last week they announced that they will start offering merchants the option of adding a ‘buy’ button to their promotional newsfeed and page posts, meaning users can stay on the platform to make their purchases. Though the social media giant is currently not taking commissions on this, it could be expected that they may, particularly if the button becomes available for non-promotional posting.

Twitter seems to have gone to the greatest lengths in this space. They tested out ‘buy now’ buttons with the retailer Fancy (info about this here), and they launched an analytics services to help brands and retailers track the success of their promotional campaigns. Beyond this, they acquired the tablet and mobile retargeting startup TapCommerce, and are also to acquire the online payments startup CardSpring. Looks like they mean business!

Pinterest is still lagging somewhat, with their first step into shoppable social coming in the guise of a partnership with Shopify. All Shopify merchants can now pin ‘Rich Pins’ on to Pinterest, which syncs images and info on items to availability in the vendors’ store. It consequently makes shopping via Pinterest easier, and does other nifty things such as emails the person who ‘pinned’ a Rich Pin, if that item has been reduced in price.

Are social media channels finally cooking up a viable remedy to their monetisation issues, or are these acquisitions and partnerships merely a recipe for disaster? Only time will tell, once these technologies have been fully onboarded – but it sure looks like the process is on its way to being streamlined.

Reported by Anna Abrell