Gift Shop Plus Fall 2022
Retail Chat: Branding in Motion By Victoria Venturi

How to keep up, stand out and succeed in a video-obsessed world


• Maintain a posting “rhythm.” You don’t have to post daily but try to stick to a regular schedule whether that be once a day or 3 times a week. The algorithm rewards users with what they call, “regular cadence.”

• Use Instagram stories to create polls, quizzes and surveys for your customers. Get them involved by voting on what to purchase at trade shows, what color to paint a display or maybe even polling their favorite items in the store. This is a FREE, built-in tool for boosting your engagement and garnering valuable market research from your customers.

• Take 7-10 pictures and upload them consecutively into a reel or TikTok. Add music and BOOM… an easy, 15-second-video that can be made every day without ever pressing record.

Ever feel like the only store on earth that hasn’t made a social media video? You’re not alone. In fact, 1 in 4 retailers report being initially “intimidated” to enter the video space – including TikTok, Instagram reels and more. But, have no fear!

It’s not as hard as it looks and more importantly, it is essential to social media conversion. According to a study completed by Animoto, 93% of retail businesses landed a new customer because of a video on social media. What’s more, half of Gen Z and a quarter of Millennials “don’t know how they’d get through life without video.” (HubSpot, 2020). Bottom line, people expect video now…even subconsciously.

As a store on social media, there is no longer an option to skip video. Online engagement is interconnected directly with video-related content. It’s important to have a video presence, no matter how small. Brand videos can create an identity and “personality” for your store that otherwise wouldn’t exist. The human mind has an easier time remembering things that it sees rather than things it reads. Videos humanize your business and drive people to consume at a much higher volume.

Videos don’t have to be gimmicky “sales tools,” rather they can range in style from informative to funny. Don’t overthink it. Allow video to give your customers a window into your world.

Here are 4 video genre ideas to try with your store social media campaigns:

Educational: These are informative videos about your store and can create brand awareness for new customers. They often take a more polished tone and establish the brand as an expert. If created for current customers, the videos could focus on gift guides and tips for getting the most out of your product or shop.

Behind-the-scenes: These give a look into company operations and employees. They sometimes serve to give a virtual peek behind the curtain. People LOVE these and this is where brick and mortar shops can shine. Show your team unpacking new arrivals, working on inventory, a time lapse for setting up holiday decorations – the ideas are endless.

Interviews and Testimonials: With customers, vendors, employees. These are a great way to introduce your audience to people important to your business. Handing the virtual microphone over can be fun and provide more authenticity to your shop. It’s also a great way to showcase products sold in the store or to answer detailed questions.

Entertaining: These include jokes, trends and random meme type ideas. They serve solely to entertain but can also be a great way of emphasizing your brand voice. This is often the video people “think of” when they hear the name TikTok. That said, this is far from the only way to be successful with video.

No matter where you are at in your video journey, you can continue to grow by looking internally at your business. Describing your store in 3 keywords can jump start video content. “Simple, clean, and useful” will produce a much different video than “fun, bright and empowering.” Ask yourself, what is different about your store that sets it apart from the rest? Is there a unique selling point that can be translated into video? Your store is special. Now get out there and start creating videos about it!

Victoria Venturi

Victoria Venturi has grown Paper Epiphanies from an idea to a global brand. Paper Epiphanies is a three-time Louie Award winner and can be found in over 1,200 stores globally. Prior to Paper Epiphanies, Venturi was a marketing executive for over a decade — writing successful campaigns for networks and big brands including FOX, American Idol, Disney, and more. Venturi resides in Portland, Oregon.

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