Move over, Pinterest and Instagram! There’s a new game in town.
Just a few days ago, Amazon released a new social network called Spark focused on product discovery. And that’s great news for retailers: it is a brand-new way to promote your products.
Here’s how the social network works. Users are encouraged to post their images, stories, and ideas about their favorite products. Others can comment or hit the “smile” button (which is similar to a Facebook “Like”).
But most importantly, each post includes a link that goes straight to the product page on Amazon where people can then purchase that product. The buying process is much simpler than Instagram or Pinterest. And users already trust Amazon, so they are that much more likely to check out.
Since the social network is so new, retailers have a chance to get in on the ground floor, when there’s less clutter and competition. Here’s a step-by-step guide to adding your products and optimization tips to make the most of your Spark posts.
How to Add Your Products to the Amazon Spark Feed
Before you get started, you’ll need three things:
- A mobile Apple device
- An Amazon account with a Prime membership
- Amazon’s iOs app
Unfortunately, Spark is not available for Android users yet. And if you don’t have Prime, you can view, but you won’t be able to post, comment, or “smile.”
Once you have those three things ready, you are ready to start the process of adding your products.
Step 1: Navigate to the Setup
Open the Amazon app on your phone. Click on the menu icon in the top left corner. Then select “Programs and Features.” Scroll down and click on the Amazon Spark tile.
Step 2: Select Interests
Click the “Get Started” button.
Then click on five or more interests related to your products and hit the “Next” button.
Step 3: Your Account Name and Image
Next, you’ll be asked to confirm your name and image. This will be publicly displayed, so it can be beneficial for branding purposes to use your company name and logo.
Step 4: Notifications
Amazon will ask if you want to receive alerts when users respond to your posts and comments. This feature can enable you to stay on top of consumer interactions in real-time.
Step 5: Add a Product
Your account is now set up! From here, you can add your first product. Click “Share a product, photo, or idea” at the top of the browser.
Type a brief message in the area “Share something interesting…”
Then you can either use the product images already in Amazon or add a new product image just for this post.
- To use a product image already in Amazon: Find your product by clicking on the shopping bag in the lower menu. This will grab the general product image for your post.
- To add a new product image: Click on the image icon in the bottom left corner. You can either snap the photo right then or access a photo you previously took in your photo library. Then click on the product to tag it. Search for your product in Amazon’s catalog and select it. Then hit the “Done” button in the top right corner.
Step 6: Tag Interests
You will be prompted to add up to five interests. You can type in the first few letters, and Amazon will offer suggestions. Then hit the “Post” button at the bottom.
Step 7: Check out your post!
Click on “Your Activity” in the lower right to view your published post. If you made a mistake, you can click on the “…” in the lower right to delete the post and start all over again.
Optimization Tips for Amazon Spark
Simply posting your product images is unlikely to move many customers to purchase. You have to post content that’s compelling.
Here are a few tips for getting the most engagement and conversions from your Spark posts.
Go beyond your standard product photo.
Find a unique way to showcase your product. Like you would on Instagram or Pinterest, seek out ways to capture people’s attention. Show your products in use. Think of ways you can incorporate lifestyle imagery. Get artistic.
Show some personality.
This is a great way to establish your brand and show off your company’s unique voice. Are you fun and quirky? Bold and irreverent? Artsy and inspiring? Show that off in your posts.
Share consumer reviews.
If your customers aren’t already sharing their reviews on Spark, use quotes from reviews paired with product images as posts yourself.
Go beyond just photos and images.
Amazon Spark also allows you to add links and polls. Use links to showcase blog posts and other resources on your site. And once you’ve built up an audience, use polls to find out more about what your customers are thinking.
Make use of all five interests.
You can post without all five, but why would you? The more interests you select, the greater the chance people will find your posts. Do some digging and create a list of the most relevant interests to your products.
Partner with influencers.
The social network may be brand new, but you can bet there are already influencers. You can give your own following a boost – and your products greater visibility – by leveraging their existing fan base.
Think outside the box.
It’s a new social network, so many of the norms and best practices haven’t been established yet. Get your team together to brainstorm ideas – even if they’re a little unconventional. Test the waters, and then measure the results.
Now is your chance to take advantage of this new social network and get your products listed ahead of your competition.