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4 Retail Brands Driving Sales With Eye-Catching Social Video Ads

Written by: Carolyn Berk, Content Marketing Associate

This article originally appeared on IBM’s THINK Marketing blog.

Retailer marketers are no strangers to the impactful power of social video ads. This highly visual ad unit is the perfect medium for showing off products in a mobile-friendly, engaging way. In fact, Nanigans advertisers in the Americas  increased mobile video ad spend 20% quarter-over-quarter between Q3 and Q4 2016.

How are retail advertisers using video ads on sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to drive sales? Learn the innovative strategies that are helping these four brands grow purchases and revenue.

Note: The brands featured herein are meant to serve as compelling examples, and are not Nanigans customers unless expressly noted. 

Ikea makes an emotional connection

People don’t flock to social media to see ads. They’re drawn everyday by human connection and the need to interact with their friends and loved ones. Marketers that understand and incorporate that personal element into their ad campaigns can craft videos that fit right in with the organic content that will surround it on social news feeds.


Ikea could easily fill this Instagram video ad with promotions for its products. Instead, the company chooses to focus on influencer Katie Quinn and her Friendsgiving celebration. As Katie shares why the gathering means so much to her, Ikea subtly features its dining and kitchen ware as an essential component of the celebration. By allowing a story of human relationships take center stage, Ikea is able to use this video ad to connect with audiences on an emotional level, making the ad and the brand more memorable to viewers.

Converse crafts a digital catalog

Retailers don’t have to reinvent the wheel in order to run social video ads. In fact, many aspects of current campaigns can easily be repurposed for these channels. Use your videos as a digital catalog, attracting views with eye-catching promotional images that convey the voice of your brand and showcase your products. Ads like this are also ideal for direct response, as it gives viewers an inventive to click an accompanying call-to-action (CTA) button to learn more about your products and make a purchase.


Converse shows off various looks and styles of its classic Chuck Taylor sneakers in this Twitter video ad. The video recreates a catalog feel by showcasing a wide range of colors and styles of the shoes. Even though the focus of the ad is still images, Converse crafts an ad that is moving, vibrant, and perfectly captures the youthful style and energy of the brand.

Lowe’s shares helpful tips

Getting viewers hooked on your video ads can be a tricky endeavor. Your ads will be competing with a plethora of other content to capture the attention of users. To ensure people on social media stop to watch your video ads, try offering helpful tips or lifehacks. This will provide value to viewers and give you with a way to plug your products without aggressively selling to audiences.


Lowe’s provides a seasonally-appropriate tip in its Facebook video ad. The simple, short video illustrates how audiences can keep their wet or snowy boots from dirtying their floors. This video works because it provides helpful advice that just happens to involve products sold a Lowe’s, making for a seamless, subtle sell. It also ca be easily viewed or understood on smaller mobile screens or without sound, so audiences will be able to follow along regardless of where they view this ad.

The Gap sticks to the basics

Your marketing team doesn’t need a massive budget to produce effective video ads. In fact, sometimes the most impactful videos can be straight-forward, low-tech and easy to create. Experiment with techniques as simple as demonstrating or showing off your products in a candid, natural way. Or explore ad units such as Facebook’s slideshow ads, which allow you to stitch together still images into a video ad unit.

The Gap

The Gap’s Instagram video ad is nothing fancy, yet it still conveys the clothing brand’s classic style and effortless cool vibe. The ad’s three basic images act as a moving photo shoot, and communicate the brand’s laid-back and casual voice. This video is also easy to follow and understand, and clearly shows off products that viewers can click through the ad to purchase on The Gap’s website.

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