Study Reveals How to Digitally Influence Consumer Behavior and Sales

Previously Published to Talent Zoo’s Digital Pivot

According to a recent study at the University of Miami School of Business Administration, online shoppers are proving to be 80% more likely to choose more expensive products and services when accompanied by a video demonstration. If your brand hasn’t implemented video to your social media mix, you may potentially be missing out on a large market share.

Interestingly enough, 79% more shoppers are most likely to choose products centered on entertainment and pleasure as opposed to functionality. They are even willing to pay a higher price for this. Could this be the correlation between video engagement and a product that entertains?

“It is clear from our study that online retailers, particularly those selling a product that beats the competition less on function and more on attributes about pleasure and enjoyment, can substantially increase their sales and profits by systematically incorporating more dynamic presentation formats like video to convey their product and service offerings,” states Claudia Townsend, Assistant Professor of Marketing at the University of Miami School of Business Administration. She, along with Professor Ram Krishan, collaborated with additional professors from Babson College to conduct these studies in time for holiday sales and marketing initiatives. She continues, “Whatever kind of business you are in, there is no question that investing in richer media for your website is an investment that will pay off.”

The study analyzed consumer behavior, comparing and contrasting several controls in proving the most effective form of sales and marketing for the average buyer. In fact, customers shopping through platforms that included video were more likely to purchase the item in front of them as opposed to those shopping with photos and text. It’s this type of interaction that also proves that people are interested in realism and personal discovery before purchase, no matter what the product is.

People like to tour hotel rooms before reserving one, reflecting upon horror stories of hotels that “seemed great online.” The next best thing to actually being there in person is a video experience catering to their needs. As a matter of fact, consumers were more likely to go with the luxury hotel room over a nice hotel with many free perks based on video presentation alone.

In assessing the data and study results, researchers built upon the “vividness theory.” This means that consumers are enticed by their senses and emotions through an encounter with imagery, colors, and sound. They are able to imagine themselves using the products and services before their eyes and begin to simulate a need, as opposed to a desire, for that product. Impulses initiate sales, based on this theory. Those who are not employing it into their digital business model are missing out on their true potential.

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