9 May 2022
Back in July 2015, Amazon celebrated its first-ever Prime Day as a way to recognize Prime members. Since then, Prime Day has grown into one of Amazon’s biggest shopping events of the year. Prime Day offers shopping deals to more than 200 million paid members around the world.1 In 2021, Prime members shopped and saved more than any other Prime Day, purchasing more than 250 million items worldwide.2
And while Prime Day is known as one of Amazon’s biggest retail events of the year, it can also be a huge opportunity for businesses to focus on brand building. According to a recent Kantar and Amazon Ads study, 71% of shoppers learn about new brands leading up to Prime Day, and 75% of shoppers are likely to purchase a product during Prime Day that they discovered during the lead-up to the event.3 Given the excitement around Prime Day, the event can be an excellent chance for brands to connect with highly engaged new and existing customers.4
We caught up with Awilda Hancock, the Global Industry Marketing Team Lead at Amazon Ads, to better understand how Amazon Ads can help brands in the lead-up to, during and after Prime Day.
To start out, tell me a little bit about yourself and your role at Amazon Ads.
I started with Amazon a little over a year ago. I had been working in the CPG realm for a few years building brands globally. I worked for Unilever, Colgate, L’Oréal and other big brands. For my own professional development, I wanted to understand Amazon and how things work here. I joined the Amazon Ads team, where I’m the lead for retail events like Prime Day and the holiday period. We talk a lot about how Amazon Ads can help advertisers build their brands and engage audiences during these high-traffic shopping moments.
You mentioned you wanted to learn the Amazon side of things. I’m curious, what have you learned since you started with Amazon?
I’ve definitely learned that, wow, there is a unique opportunity for brands to drive awareness with Amazon Ads. When I was on the brand side of things, I always had this perception that it helps to have our products on Amazon to drive volume, to drive sales. Since I’ve been here, it’s like, oh my goodness, there’s much more to Amazon. We have Freevee (formerly IMDb TV), we have Fire TV, we have live sports on Prime Video, we have Twitch. We have so many solutions for brands to reach audiences whether they’re streaming a video game on Twitch or listening to music through Amazon Music’s ad-supported tier.
So, what strategies have you seen that have been successful for brands during Prime Day?
I like to recommend what we call an always-on campaign. Prime Day is much more than the event itself. There’s the lead-up and lead-out of the event. From current research we’ve done worldwide, brands who advertised throughout all phases of Prime Day were better able to build their brand presence with shoppers. We saw a 216% increase in awareness and 214% increase in consideration – versus brands who did not advertise in any phase of Prime Day.5 That is the best strategy recommendation I can make for any brand.
The second is that there isn’t one product solution that works best. What we recommend is that brands lean into what we call a “better together” campaign. That’s combining multiple Amazon Ads solutions. For example, for the North American region, we learned that brands who combined sponsored ads and display (whether Amazon DSP and/or Sponsored Display) plus streaming TV ads during the Prime Day event saw a 50% increase in sales versus the two weeks before the Prime Day period. In the EU they saw a 46.4% increase.
Thirdly, our measurement tools can help advertisers make the most of their Prime Day investment throughout all phases of the event. Brands can view the performance of their Amazon media in real time to track KPIs, they can measure non-Amazon media through Amazon Attribution, Amazon Brand Lift (beta) to measure brand awareness, and Amazon Marketing Cloud (AMC) to dive deep and understand insights that will have long-term benefits.
Can you think of any big wins from brands or success story that really stood out during last Prime Day?
Yes, absolutely. We saw one global automotive and home improvement brand that wanted to use the increased traffic during Prime Day to help grow the brand. They used multiple ad products, specifically Sponsored Brands video, to increase awareness and sales for some of their top performing products. They not only increased year-over-year sales, during Prime Day, they also expanded brand awareness. That’s what we’re talking about, using multiple products to help brand growth. Another was a German-based home fitness brand that used Sponsored Display and Sponsored Products during Prime Day to engage with shoppers browsing similar products. They were able to boost overall brand performance by promoting best sellers and other products during Prime Day. They also increased bids for top performing keywords to help achieve a low ACOS (Advertising Cost of Sales).
What tips do you have for small and medium-sized businesses, and also for larger brands or even brands that don’t sell on Amazon, like automotive brands?
For small and medium-sized businesses, we recommend utilizing multiple ad solutions and spreading your investment throughout all phases of the Prime Day period.
Brands that don’t sell products on Amazon – like automotive brands – also have an opportunity during Prime Day. Most recently, we conducted a worldwide survey focused on automotive shopping behaviours, with nearly 8,000 respondents, who told us they’ve shopped during Prime Day before and plan to shop this year.6 What we learned is that there is an audience that is considering purchasing or leasing a car and who are also going to be shopping during Prime Day.7 These consumers have also told us that they’re open to learning about more information from these auto brands. Non-endemic brands have the opportunity to engage these audiences early – prior to the event and maybe even before they decide on what car they ultimately decide to buy and/or lease.
How do you suggest brands prepare in the lead-up to Prime Day?
It is important for brands to have these conversations about how they can tap into Prime Day early. There’s a lot of business planning discussions that happen in the start of the year, because there is a lot of budget and investment involved. Typically, it’s an important moment in time where you can touch every aspect of the shopping journey. You want to prepare for that.
Aside from budget, the biggest tip I have is to really lean into all phases. We know that 75% of shoppers are likely to purchase a product during Prime Day that they discovered during the lead-up to the event.8 It’s also important to consider how you’re going to bring awareness to and promote your brand. We know that 40% of shoppers who responded as part of our study want to choose products that support their values, aside from deals, and 63% chose product quality as the most important attribute for why they would buy, also aside from deals.9 So that’s the main takeaway, you need to use these moments to be prepared to talk about more than just your deals – talk about how your brand can add value for consumers.
So how can brands continue to have success after Prime Day?
Really there are three key takeaways that can help with continued success after Prime Day:
- Continue to have an always-on campaign approach to remain top of mind with audiences through our Amazon Ads solutions.
- The impact of your investment doesn’t end with Prime Day; we’ve seen how much engagement continues after the event is done.
- Leverage our measurement solutions to understand insights from your campaigns on what worked, and use those insights for future campaigns.
What can we expect in terms of timing for Prime Day 2022? Is there a date yet?
While I don’t have a Prime Day 2022 date that I can share with you yet, I will tell you that Prime Day is one of the biggest brand-building opportunities of the year. The event has the ability to reach highly engaged consumers. Shoppers eagerly await the announcement of the Prime Day date and start to engage with Amazon before the event begins and continue to show engagement after the event is over.
It’s an opportunity to increase visibility for your brand in front of millions of new and existing audiences worldwide. As the event approaches, brands can make their products part of the excitement. But ultimately investing in Prime Day delivers valuable insights on how to continue building your brand throughout the year.
1–5Amazon Internal Data, 2021, US, CA, MX, UK, DE, JP, AU
6–7Amazon Ads, Kantar Survey, US/CA/MX/UK/DE/JP/AU, 2022
8–9 Amazon Internal Data, 2021, US, CA, MX, UK, DE, JP, AU