Sienna Sinclaire, owner of Naughty Girl, decided to host her first online virtual live popup store on Instagram/Facebook stories and Youtube Live.
Sinclaire had to quickly come up with new ways to promote her online store during quarantine.
Naughty Girl has been opened since March 2019 with sales growing each month. Then March 2020, sales immediately stopped.
Sinclaire sat down to think of ways to promote her online to keep making sales in difficult times.
She's great at throwing the best parties and popup stores in Los Angeles. So she took her expertise in event planning and decided to host her first online virtual live popup store.
She planned the event to take place over the weekend, where she would go live for 2 days, 2 hours each day, and offer discounts.
She promoted it for two weeks then went live...it was a HUGE success!!! Her sales immediately went back up. April ended up being her biggest sales so far.
Below Sinclaire will share her tips on how to host your own online virtual live popup store and make yours a success.
Even when quarantine is over, this is something you can start doing on a weekly or monthly basis to reach people who either can't make it in to your store, or live in other cities/countries.
How To Host An Online Virtual Live Popup Store
1. DAY/TIME: Set a date and time - Choose if you want to do it for one day, two or more, along with how many hours. You can make this a monthly event where it's just one day and one hour.
2. DISCOUNT: Set up a discount to entice people to shop. Make sure to offer a discount for the day of your event. It can be a smaller discount, 20% off. During the time of your live event offer a bigger discount, 50% off.
This way people can use the 20% off to shop your store before or after your live event as some of your customers aren't going to be able to make your show. But they may still want to shop as was the case with Naughty Girl. During the day of the event, many shopped before and after the live event.
3. LOCATION: Decide where to host your event: your store, home, outside, or another venue. Then set up an area for filming. Make sure to have racks for clothes and/or table to place your products for display.
4. THEME: Come up with a theme(s) for your online virtual popup store. You can choose any theme you want: Hawaiian, 20s, floral, all white, Hollywood...the list goes on and on with what you can come up with.
For Sinclaire's popup her event was 2 hours. Every 30 minutes she had a different clothing theme. The first 30 minutes she showcased travel outfits, next 30 minutes dresses, swim, and so on. You can do new arrivals as a weekly or monthly online virtual live popup store.
5. SOCIAL MEDIA: It's very important to decide which social media platforms you will be using when hosting your live popup store. Remember your customers may not use Facebook or Instagram, so going live only on one social media platform can limit your audience. For Sinclaire, she went live on Youtube, Facebook and Instagram.
6. PROMOTE: It's extremely important that you promote your online virtual popup store. See below for ways to promote.
7. CAMERA EQUIPMENT: Have your camera equipment ready and fully charged, or plugged in just in case. It's best to buy a phone stand so you can adjust your phone's height. Depending how you're going live, Instagram you'll need to use a phone. Facebook and Youtube, you can use your computer.
It's very important to set up your camera equipment the day before or hours before going live as anything can happen and you want to be prepared.
8. INTERNET: You must have strong internet connection to be able to go live especially if going live on more than one device. If you don't, it can ruin all your efforts because viewers won't be able to watch your video without good internet connection.
Make sure to do a test with all your devices by going live for 2-5 minutes to make sure it's all good. Just let your viewers know that you're coming on to tell them about your upcoming live popup store and see if they have any questions. Don't try to go live last minute without testing it out.
9. BRANDING: When going live, make sure to have your logo in sight of your viewers so it's always present, or your color scheme. For Naughty Girl shop, Sinclaire had one of her red/gold shopping bags on display. Plus customers get to see the beautiful bag their clothes will come in.
10. DECORATE: Before going live, have your online shop looking its best. This is your chance to showcase your brand to the world. You never know who's popping in to watch you. Clean up the area you'll be using, decorate with flowers, use your color scheme or your chosen theme.
11. GOING LIVE: Don't worry about numbers of viewers when going live. People will come and go out of your live video, and even come back. (See how to offer incentives to get people to stay).
If you're live on Instagram stories, it will save your video for 24 hours. If it's on Facebook or Youtube, the video will stay up as long as you want it too. This way people can watch later and still shop using your discount as stated above.
Remember to use the time when going live to really show case your products. This is the perfect time to educate customers, answer questions live, get new customers in other states and countries. Also, make sure to let customers know throughout your live show about the contests, prizes, discounts, free shipping, special guests and more. This can help to get people to stay.
Most important, don't forget to have fun, personable and really connect with your viewers.
Ways To Promote Your Online Popup Store
~ BANNERS - Make a banner of your event to post on your social media, to get others to promote/share for you, to post in your stories and on your feed/timeline, in your newsletters and more. Make sure to list: date, time, theme, contests, prizes, discounts, and that it's an online virtual popup store and where people can watch it on social media. List anything on your banner that's important for others to know.
~ FACEBOOK EVENT - If you're on Facebook, then make a Facebook event page where you can promote your event. For your Facebook "friends," let them know you'll be going live on there. This is a great way to promote it, have it seen by others, and have others share your event.
~ PR - If you have a PR person to promote your company then take advantage of them to get news out about your event a month in advance as it can take time for someone to pick it up. Or you can look up ways to do this yourself by reaching out to people in your industry to do interviews before the event. Have people write about you in their blogs.
~ INFLUENCERS - It's important for your business to always have good relationships with influencers who believe in your brand and will be there for you when needed. Get them to announce your popup store in their stories and/or on their feed by payment or trade. They can help to bring people to your live event. You can even have some of them come on live to your popup store. This will increase your viewers and potential shoppers. When they go live with you on instagram, their followers are notified they are live with you. When their followers go live to watch them, they can see you too and your views go up.
~ NEWSLETTER - Your newsletter is your most important business asset and now it's time to put it to good use. Schedule newsletters to go out the week of your event. Let your subscribers know that you're having one. Then send them a reminder the day of, two hours before you go live.
~ SOCIAL MEDIA - This is why it's very important to have more than one social media account along with taking the time to build and grow them for times like this. Post on all your social media accounts that you'll be hosting an online popup. Each day share different things people can expect for your popup to entice them to watch from discounts, contests, free shipping, etc. Then day of post a countdown that you will go live.
~ ONLINE STORE - Don't forget to promote your popup on your virtual store by putting up a banner on your home page.
~ IN-STORE - If you have an actual store, print out banners to put in your store to give out to your customers who come into your shop.
~ PACKAGES - If someone orders from your store before the event, pop in a banner in their package you ship out to them. They are already buying items from you, so it may entice them to join your live video to buy more especially if you're offering a discount.
Offer Incentives To Get Customers To Shop
~ FREE DELIVERY - You can offer shoppers free delivery on orders over $100 (set your own amount). You can even offer Same Day, Hand Delivery right after the show in your area. As soon as your live video ends, get to work by fulfilling orders for those who live in your area. If you have a lot of orders, make sure to have someone there to help you as orders come in while you're live. Once show is over, each of you can map out your routes to delivery the items to your customers.
Don't forget about your customers who live in different cities. If it's a weekend, then deliveries can wait till Monday. Or right after the show, have someone helping with orders in your local area, and have someone else fulfilling orders in different cites by getting them ready for the post office.
~ DISCOUNTS - Offer discounts during your live video to entice customers to shop. You can offer a smaller discount that last all day. This way people can shop before your event and after, as they will and did for Sinclaire's popup. Then offer a bigger discount, like 50% off only during the live event. This way it encourages customers to buy now.
~ GIFTS - Offer small gifts when customers buy over $100 (amount is up to you). This will get them to buy more and to feel special. Sinclaire gives away monthly gifts already on her online store each month which helps increase sales. So when doing a live online store, she offers the same gifts to those who buy over $100 worth of items.
~ CONTESTS - Host a contest(s) throughout your live popup store. Don't let viewers know when you'll be doing the contests as this gets them to hopefully stay during your show to win a prize. Plus this will get more people to join your live video and to build customer loyalty. There will be times that you have followers that love your brand but haven't bought from you yet, for whatever reason. You never know when someone will buy from you by the little things you do for me. Plus it's great giveaway to your customers who do buy from you.
~ SPECIAL GUESTS - Bring on special guests to increase your viewers, potential customers, and people that your viewers want to see. Whatever your business specializes in, have on guests who are within your business. For example, Naughty Girl is all about fashion so Sinclaire had on influencers/customers who wear her clothes and love NG brand.