Have you seen the latest headlines? Amazon just dropped its newest platform, Inspire. And this is a beast unlike any other. Inspire is a shopping platform built on short-form video and content creation and has been dubbed the “TikTok shopping feed” for obvious reasons.
It’s the new wave of the eCommerce world and far more dynamic than just general storefront browsing. Inspire allows you to build customer engagement as the content creator and post individual products in a way they’re already familiar with while also providing a convenient in-feed path to purchase.
Here’s a bit of history for you: A different version of Inspire was actually launched by Amazon in 2016ish as an open hub for educators and teaching resources. At that time, they ran into some copyright issues and reverted the project back to beta. Until now, where it’s the same platform in name only.
While Inspire is not available to all US users yet, Amazon has promised to roll it out to more and more users over the next few months. Not to worry, that means you have time to get your strategy and content together in advance. Let’s dig into it!
Amazon Allows Creators to Create an In App Content Shopping Experience
We get it, Amazon sells a lot of stuff, and they’re in every market space out there. Up to now, their primary function is to sell. But when was the last time you opened the Amazon app just to browse with no specific direction or search? I’m guessing “never.”
Today’s consumer isn’t interested in JUST shopping. They want to be entertained, engaged, educated, and delighted while they do it. The numbers are in, and for the last several years, video content and UGC have been the top two performers.
Amazon is finally getting on the content creation train, moving beyond a marketplace and into a connection space. And I think it will pay off, not just for them but for brands and influencers too.
Inspire: Curated & Engaging Interest-Based Shopping
Let’s start with the short-form video phenomenon, TikTok. Still a social media toddler, it has quickly become a top contender for content creation, influencers, and advertising, with over 1 billion global monthly active users.
But what made it so unique was its focus on only creating video content, specifically short-form. TikTok is defined by quick, bite-sized, entertaining clips with exciting features that capture viewer attention and generate buzz.
Harnessing the rise in popularity of short-form video, Amazon Inspire has added a layer of in-feed shopping experience to create a new “cha-ching” machine.
While Instagram/Facebook have integrated with Shopify to provide shopping access, you will still be redirected to that platform to complete your purchase. And while Facebook has created its own shop feature with in-app checkout, it’s not as integrated into the feed or the scroll.
Where Inspire shines is shoppable content. When you scroll on Instagram or TikTok, and a product catches your eye, what happens? You follow the link, check out the product, click around and see what else they have, and you may or may not complete a purchase.
With Amazon Inspire, the process is far more streamlined. You scroll through your curated feed, a product catches your eye, and the button to purchase that product is right there. You’re immediately in your established Amazon account shopping cart, where you can easily checkout with a few taps.
Another step shoppers often have to go through when shopping on other platforms is the dreaded “create an account” step. Not all eCommerce stores require this, but many do, and it’s a pain.
As a consumer, I don’t want accounts for every possible shop I may visit, just take my money and send my product. As a business and boutique owner, I know these secondary accounts mean better marketing opportunities later, but that doesn’t apply to Amazon. Those are Amazon’s customers, not mine.
By providing a content creator platform, Amazon gives their consumers individualized and engagement-driven access to brands, creators, ambassadors, etc., while also cashing in on streamlined in-feed purchases. It’s pretty brilliant.
Here’s a simpler breakdown:
- TikTok and IG = Scroll + Click Link In Profile + Redirect + Shop + Checkout
- Inspire = Scroll + Checkout
There are no other decisions that have to be made. No other accounts to set up. No other distractions. The likelihood of capturing more sales just blew up.
What Does This Mean For Marketing?
Obviously, Amazon is geared more toward selling physical products. However, there is still a respectable space for digital resources, affiliate links (AKA Amazon Associates), and influencer marketing.
You know me, I’m all about multiple streams of income. While selling products on Amazon, physical or digital, isn’t in your short-term plan, now may be the time to reconsider.
Video Is Still King
But you knew that, right? TikTok and Instagram Reels have made sure video content remains the king of marketing. If you’re already creating video content for the OG platforms, you can repurpose suitable content for Inspire too.
Rise In Amazon Influencers
Amazon Influencers have been around since the time when bloggers were new and novel. The current generation of Amazon Influencers is on every platform, sharing their favorite products and redirecting viewers to shop for themselves.
With Inspire, the shopping process will be even more streamlined as creators can easily repurpose their content for Inspire with their shopping links built in. If you’re a brand that already uses influencer marketing or is considering it, now is the ground-floor time to get in on this new platform.
Better Affiliate Marketing Integration
Amazon’s affiliate program, Amazon Associates, is very simple to implement. You set up an account and get your custom commission link. This can be plugged into your social media profiles, newsletters, blog articles, website, Instagram and Facebook stories, and anywhere else you display a link.
If you haven’t already, start getting your storefront ready now and plug in your favorite products. This is also an opportunity for you to upload or publish your digital resources to Amazon’s platform and sell them right from the Inspire feed. Whether you do this yourself or recruit an established influencer, my prediction is that with checkouts as easy as this, sales will come easier here than anywhere else.
Amazon Inspire is going to shake things up, and I’m here for it.