Amazon already runs one of the most effective sales operations in the world, and provides a host of tools for sellers to display and advertise their products on its platform, but it can still take cues from what has become the best marketing channel category anywhere - social media.
Platforms like Facebook, Instagram and TikTok attract billions of eyeballs each day, and any marketing strategy that doesn’t include them today is missing a trick.
Emulating that effect on Amazon’s platform is a new avenue being tried through Amazon Posts, a new product that is currently in beta.
Through the Amazon Posts program, sellers will be able to amplify their products by posting lifestyle imagery of their brand on a feed that resembles what you would typically see on social media.
Posts will show up on a brand’s unique feed - where they can post about any product in their line - as well as on carousels on a product’s detail page. Additionally, Posts can be displayed on feeds of related brands as well on the relevant category-based feed.
In the current beta phase, only sellers registered on Amazon’s Brand Registry can use it within the US, and only those that already have an Amazon Store. Amazon DSP customers are also able to use it already, provided they have an advertising console account as well. At the moment, they are only showing on the mobile shopping app on either iOS or Android.
Posts include five customizable elements that you can play around with, according to Amazon:
The idea behind it is not just to showcase the products, for which Amazon has plenty of other tools, but also to encourage shoppers to engage with the brand itself and its story, discovering it and browsing through it using familiar mechanisms people are used to from the social media they use every day.
Posts are also designed to be readily transferable to other social media sites, allowing brands to repurpose the same ads across multiple platforms in order to maintain a consistent brand identity across all channels.
The short answer is yes - to the extent that Posts can replicate what makes social media so effective, it will very much be worth using.
Unlike with Sponsored Products or Sponsored Brands, which both operate on a pay-per-click model, Amazon Posts will be entirely free to use, and puts another layer on top of existing free tools that registered brands can use - like A+ Content - to tell their brand story and drive awareness.
It will also provide, particularly in the early days while it is still catching on, a further point of differentiation brands can use to stand out from the competition, as it will let customers follow brands the same way they follow accounts on Twitter or Instagram.
With Posts, brands can maintain a constant presence on Amazon free of charge, complete with constant updates and no limit on how many posts they can make, and - like any social media post - you will be able to measure the engagement it generates and adjust accordingly.
Assuming that your brand is eligible - registered and selling in the US - trying out Posts is a pretty straight forward process:
You won’t need to specify where you want the Posts to be displayed, as Amazon’s own system will put it on feeds and detail pages depending on customer engagement and relevance.
One of the most convenient things about Posts is that, if you already have a presence on social media, getting up and running will not take much additional work. You can repurpose posts that you’ve already used elsewhere and bring them on to the new platform.
Lead with a lifestyle image, remember this is a chance to sell not just a product but a brand - an idea. As there is no limit to how much you can post, it’s a good idea to treat it like another brand social media handle and post as much as possible. You can also schedule posts to make sure everything goes out on schedule and in a constant flow.
As with any image, keep the resolution high, and for posts keep the image relatively simple without too many overlays that confuse the eye. Use the caption to get across any more specific messages you want to send.
It is worth noting that not all products that you could ordinarily sell on Amazon are eligible for posts. Some prohibited products include:
It may also go without saying, but stay away from the prohibited content in the ad text, whose list includes, among other things:
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