As the world of ecommerce video grows, e-retailers are constantly looking to improve the quality and engagement of their video content. Traditional “one-to-many” style videos can be compelling, but a true connection with the customer requires a level of choice beyond just pushing play. Enter: Choose Your Own Adventure video (CYOA).
Picture this: A customer lands on your site. They find a welcoming invitation to help them choose the absolutely perfect product for them. They’re taken through an entertaining series of content and questions, taking them from screen to screen on a highly personal adventure. Once completed, they are delivered to a page containing the perfect recommendation based on their tastes. Happy customer, happy retailer.
CYOA isn’t a new concept, of course. (You may fondly recall those style of books from your grade school library). However, it IS new to the world of ecommerce video. It’s similar to a great salesperson on the floor, only completely scalable to the masses. Technology has caught up with real life.
Morrisons Cellar, in launching their new ecommerce wine site, wanted to truly engage with their customers, many of whom would be experiencing the brand for the first time. They approached Liveclicker with the CYOA idea and used, once the content was shot, Liveclicker technology to put it all together.
I recently sat down (virtually) with Chris Wood, the video guru for Morrisons company Kiddicare. He took me through the ideas and challenges that led to this great CYOA.
- Why did Morrisons Cellar decide to do a CYOA video in the first place?
The Morrisons Cellar proposition is centered around a Taste Test. The basis of this proposition is that everyone is an individual with different tastes, and therefore has different tastes in wine. The Taste Test involves 3 simple questions which identify everyone on a 0-12 scale of taste profiles. The whole range of wine is classified according to these taste profiles – so the browse and purchase experience is very personal. So when planning the video content for the site, the approach had to mirror the proposition – and help people discover wine that they would enjoy – based on their Taste Test result.
The Taste Test was converted into an interactive video, giving viewers their own personal Taste Test result at the end. There would have been an option to simply list the questions within a video but a CYOA approach was much more in line with the central proposition for Morrisons Cellar.
- What were the biggest challenges in putting together the content for a CYOA video?
Scripting was a big challenge to ensure that viewers were engaged from the start to ensure they would answer the questions within the test. The script had to clearly communicate that the video was interactive. The general level of awareness of interactive videos is low, so the script had to be engaging and clear for each step to ensure that viewers knew they needed to pick an option to move onto the next stage of the video.
- What were the biggest challenges from the technical side?
The initial mapping was the biggest technical challenge. This involved identifying the number of possible answer combinations to answer just the 3 questions, for which there are 44 videos in total. Once this was mapped out, the process of ‘joining together’ content was relatively straight forward. Liveclicker gave excellent support in ensuring browser compatibility and we all had great fun testing all answer combinations before deployment!
- What do you think are the biggest advantages of a CYOA?
CYOA drives engagement and allows the viewer to be transported on a journey. It allows a very seamless route to purchase.
- What has the initial feedback been like since launch?
The interactive video has been very well received there has been positive feedback from customers and from within the industry.
- Do you think there are limitations to the effectiveness of a CYOA?
There are limitations to all systems, so for example the CYOA functionality may be ineffective if the Internet speed is slow. Also, because there are multiple questions, the load times may be further exacerbated. The great benefit of Liveclicker is that it automatically detects the end-users’ bandwidth and platform they are using, and then delivers the best size video by optimizing the quality load speed for the end-user.
- What advice would you give to someone looking to start one of their own?
Have a very clear strategy. Ensure you plan out very clearly where you want to take the viewer. Give them a reason to follow the journey and reward them with something when it’s over. The viewer must invest in the content or it will not work.
If you haven’t already, take the Morrison’s Cellar taste test and find out what wine is best for you. It’s a fun ride. And if you’d like to know more about creating your own CYOA video, please contact Liveclicker for more information.