The Fresh Market is launching what the company said is a first-of-its kind retail media network for vendors seeking to post shoppable ads during the retailer’s livestreamed online broadcasts.
As previously reported, The Fresh Market has seen strong results from its livestreamed cooking shows. Now it is translating those into an ad platform through which vendors can incorporate customized livestream content featuring their products, and video ads that viewers can click on to shop while they watch, Kevin Miller, chief marketing officer at The Fresh Market, told SN.
“It’s a proven model that continues to grow,” he said of the company’s livestreaming platform, noting that vendors have expressed considerable interest in using the streams and videos to reach The Fresh Market’s customers.
Viewers can click on products that are used in the videos and livestreams to purchase them directly from The Fresh Market’s ecommerce site. The chefs who host the videos will describe the products they are using, including messaging about the products that The Fresh Market and vendors agree upon beforehand.
Different levels of sponsorships will be available for each program, with the potential for multiple vendors on a single show.
Consumer interest in the livestreams and the long-form videos that result from them has been surprisingly robust, Miller said. He said the time customers spend viewing the videos has continued to grow, and that 75-80% of viewers now watch the entire videos.
“We are well above industry average in clicks, levels of engagement and view-throughs,” said Miller. “Brands can spend a lot of time with highly engaged customers.”
The format is also well-suited for The Fresh Market, an upscale banner that is known as a destination for ingredients for special occasions and at-home entertaining. Its recent Valentine’s Day livestream, for example, has garnered almost 1 million views online.
“Social media is not always where people are looking to shop,” Miller said. “We are presenting content to them a in a way that they are most interested in, and that’s the opportunity for our vendor partners in the retail media network.”
Retail media networks (RMNs) have been one of the fastest-growing digital ad channels in the world, with significant growth expected going forward, according to Firework, which is The Fresh Market’s technology partner in the video and livestream content space. Firework is contributing its own RMN expertise to the partnership.
“With Firework’s video commerce platform, The Fresh Market is able to truly differentiate itself in the market by offering brands the opportunity to engage, inspire and convert shoppers in a way that is far more compelling than the traditional search and static display RMN offerings,” said Rene Caceres, VP of U.S. retail media at Firework, in a statement.