Amazon is well known as an e-commerce giant. On a global scale, Amazon accounts for 13.7% of retail e-commerce sales. In the United States alone, the numbers are much higher, and over 52.4% of the market share belongs to Amazon.
It seems, though, that packages are no longer Amazon’s primary focus. While the e-commerce site has long been associated with fast and affordable shipping, the e-commerce giant is now spreading its wings and shifting its eyes to publicity and media appeal. Amazon is getting social.
Record-Breaking Amazon Prime Day
Forget about Black Friday or Cyber Monday. It’s Amazon’s Prime Day that once again proved to be the greatest shopping event. As a matter of fact, this year’s Prime Day was the largest shopping event in Amazon’s history so far.
The e-commerce giant says it sold over 175 million items during the two-day sale but did not disclose the exact sales figures just yet.
In any case, the numbers aren’t surprising. Amazon Prime Day has been breaking records year after year, and it’s expected that 2020 will be even more fruitful.
What was surprising this July, however, was the focus on publicity rather than on the packages. Prime Day was all about the media attention this year, and about showcasing the true power of Amazon Prime.
The three pillars that have established Amazon as an industry leader are e-commerce, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and of course – advertising.
With their new ad solutions, third-party sellers can advertise on Amazon.com itself. This has allowed Amazon to claim no less than $2.7 billion in ad revenue in Q1 2019 and has started to establish the e-commerce giant as a media force to be reckoned with.
Amazon Prime as a Media Force
Although earlier this year, Amazon has shut down its Amazon Spark feature, one that was the most like a social network, this doesn’t mean that the company is forgoing its social media features altogether.
The product detail pages are getting more social and interactive, users can easily find the answers they’re looking for about certain items, browse through personalized selections and offers, and comment and communicate with other users.
But what’s made Prime Day more exciting and appealing to users is not so much the social media features, but rather the Amazon’s marketing campaign.
To increase the number of Prime members, Amazon’s partnered up with none other than Taylor Swift. Her exclusive concert was only available to Prime members on Amazon Prime Video.
Another notable partnership was with Lady Gaga, who launched an Amazon-exclusive beauty line Haus Laboratories.
By partnering up with such megastars, Amazon seems to be learning from social media shopping giants such as Instagram and Shopify.
Twitch Is Quickly Taking Over
Speaking of social media, we cannot forget Twitch – a streaming platform for gamers owned by Amazon, and a direct competition to YouTube.
In Q2 2019, Twitch accounted for 72.2% of the total time spent watching live videos. That’s over 2.7 billion hours of live content that was watched on this platform.
Using Twitch’s popularity to market the Prime Day to millennials and gen Z, Amazon has hosted gaming tournaments. Most streamers have participated in the event, promoting gaming-related deals, special equipment, and electronics.
Influencer marketing on Twitch has done wonders for Amazon Prime day and attracted more Prime subscribers since only they could participate in the deals. With over 15 million daily active users, Twitch is undeniably Amazon’s most profitable social media network.
Video Games and Sports Are Where It’s at
With Amazon getting more social, we can expect to see a bigger focus on video games and sports. In the USA, the video game industry is set to generate over $152.1 billion in 2019, and with the help of Twitch, Amazon will see to it that it gets its fair share.
When it comes to live sports content, it’s well known how lucrative it can be. Amazon is already threading the waters of sports content. The previous Twitch CMO Kate Jhaveri was recently named NBA’s CMO, and this is bound to become fruitful for Amazon.
With its heavy focus on video games, sports, video content, and social media features, it’s no wonder Amazon is quickly getting more and more social, and more appealing to younger audiences. It’s successfully establishing itself as so much more than an e-commerce website, and we’re bound to see some major advancements and improvements in Amazon’s services.