Imagine attracting 20 million viewers on a live stream and selling 70,000 product units in four hours. That’s what China-based live commerce influencer Viya Huang recently did. And the product, you ask? Duck necks.

Live commerce, also known as live stream shopping, is the love child of traditional infomercials and modern influencer marketing. Viewers tune in and enjoy the real-time interaction of a live stream hosted by a trusted influencer, also known as a Key Opinion Leader (KOL), that showcases a specific product. Live trading started in China and has been a thriving industry, generating $ 135 billion in sales this year, with even more growth predicted during the Covid-19 crisis.

The US is fighting for adoption

The US has longed for this format to migrate, and there are clear indications that the time has come. Last year, Kim Kardashian appeared on Huang’s livestream to promote her signature line of perfumes. Within 15 minutes, their inventory of 15,000 bottles was sold out. In terms of platform support, social media companies capitalized on overseas success when Instagram launched its live shopping feature in August and TikTok recently partnered with NTWRK for its first-ever shoppable livestream. One of the previous American users, Amazon, made its debut on the Amazon Live programming last year and saw viewership grow on Prime Day. In addition, the latest domestic competitors, Popshop Live and Spin, have developed platforms specifically for live trading.

Marketers cannot afford to miss out on this

Brands are in an ideal position to pioneer live trading in the US in this influencer marketing evolution. Brands can generate and return solid sales on this condensed but impactful buying journey. Even more niche brands can expect greater product awareness and higher ROAS. Picture this: the KOL for your first live commerce session is David Attenborough’s latest Instagram record, or even TikTok’s golden kid Charli D’Amelio. The possibilities are as endless as your imagination in this gold rush.

Plan based on your brand’s needs

In terms of guidelines, there are no growth formulas or hacks in unfamiliar areas. Planning your brand’s entry into live trading is an opportunity to understand your audience – product areas of interest, frequently asked questions, and so on. Learn about your live stream show’s flow and the content guidelines for your KOL. Also, don’t let a shiny new format distract you from the continuing need for fascinating and exciting content.

Experiment patiently

In reality, your first few live streams are unlikely to be what you expected. No problem. Keep in mind that the live video draw is nothing like what its predecessor did – overly enchanted, polished posts. Live streaming encourages spontaneity and the audience welcomes the imperfection, resulting in a more authentic experience. Finally, the real value of discounts still needs to be competitive, so be sure to test out different offers as well.

If you want to do it, do it now

There are savings for those who invest early considering the quality of the KOLs and their prices will go up as live trading gains popularity. In addition, there is a learning curve in this industry and mistakes become more affordable sooner. As many developers know, the number of live streams on Amazon Live can be overwhelming to potential viewers. Therefore, cross-channel promotion for your specific livestream is essential. Regardless, this wave is imminent and the benefits are within reach for brands wanting to disrupt. If you’re late for the game in social media and influencer marketing, will live commerce be your third and final hit?