Today, YouTube is more than just a streaming service for watching videos online. The video site has become a social platform where users were exchange opinions. Also, YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world (after Google and before Yahoo). As a result more and more brands are trying to find creative ways in connect with their target groups and engage with their audience.
French connection, a UK based fashion retailer with stores around the globe, has found an inspiring approach morphing YouTube, which traditional has been a branding medium, to a direct response medium with direct impact on its ROI. French Connection runs a YouTube channel named ‘YouTique’, basically an online shop within YouTube. Online shoppers can browse different videos in which Louise Roe, a stylist, presents items and accessories that can be bought via the external annotation feature (only available to selected YouTube advertisers). By clicking on an item in the video the viewer gets directly taken the selected item on French Connection’s online shop. The videos also make use of internal annotations (available to everyone) which direct the user to a series of stylist videos such as ‘How to shine on a night’ out or ‘How to sparkle at a wedding.’
Major luxury brands have traditionally been hesitant to sell their items online as they want to make sure that their customers are exposed to controlled shopping experience. The value of luxury goods to the consumer is more than just the item but also the service which the consumer gets within the store when purchasing. I believe that this type of shopping format can be taken as a starting point for luxury brands which want to create a comparable in store experience online.