Consumer-Generated Online Product Videos

Types Of Online Videos Apparel Shoppers Consume

THOUGHT: Google’s recent report [PDF] about the role mobile and video play in apparel shoppers’ decision process highlights the crucial role video serves to prompt purchases. Of the 31% of apparel shoppers who watched an apparel video on YouTube, 44% visited a brick and mortar department store and 37% visited a retailer’s website.

Further, 34% are encouraged to purchase after watching an online video ad while only 16% of TV ad viewers were, encouraging stats for the prospects of video marketing, even if online video marketing has yet to fulfill its promise.

As the numbers I cited at the outset indicate, however, videos by actual customers get more attention than professionally-produced video.

According to Google, of the nearly 600,000 “haul” videos on YouTube, more than 35,000 were uploaded in the last month. Haul videos are the result of teen girls and young women bringing back their shopping “haul” and then video blogging about it on YouTube. That recently released stat has caused a wave of media coverage over the phenomenon.

This is nothing new but it is growing.

When I first wrote about the haul video trend back in 2010, the haul videographer I used as an example, SushiRockStar, had  earned nearly a million video views of her videos and boasted nearly 15,000 subscribers. Today, as of this writing, SushiRockStar has earned 4.2 million views and has more than 38,000 subscribers.

This phenomenon is not confined to haul videos. Tech geeks can tell you about the “unboxing” phenomenon where customers ritually unbox their new tech toys, such as this video Unboxing of a Samsung 63″ PN63C7000 High Def 3D TV. Gamer’s can tell you about walk-through videos that demonstrate popular video games.

It should come as little surprise that product videos would convert online sales, especially consumer-generated videos because, in addition to serving as product demonstrations, they come from a more trustworthy source.

What’s surprising to me, though, is how few companies have a deliberate outreach program to develop relationships with these citizen marketers. Blogger outreach programs are now commonplace; it should be time to do some deliberate outreach to video bloggers.


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