Amazon is planning a home makeover show featuring YouTube stars
- The show, ‘Overhaul,’ will feature furniture and other products people can buy on Amazon.com
- If the model proves successful, it could trigger a trend of shows blending entertainment and commerce
Amazon is planning a home makeover show that will be designed to help the retailer sell products.
The e-commerce behemoth has partnered with Kin Community, a web video production/ad company, to produce “Overhaul,” a six-episode show that will feature several YouTube stars having their home’s refurbished made over.
“Overhaul” is being hosted and co-produced by
Christiane Lemieux, founder of DwellStudio, and the high-end custom furniture firm Cloth & Company.
While the show is designed to be entertainment, it will also be loaded with products people can buy on Amazon, including furniture sold by Lemieux’s companies. It will live on a special hub on Amazon.com where people can easily click to purchase items in the show, as well as more affordable alternatives.
“The goal with this show is to both inspire and entertain,” said Kin Community CEO Michael Wayne.. “It’s unique in that it combines the power of Kin’s creator community, the award-winning quality of our production studio and commerce.”
“Overhaul” is scheduled to premiere in September. The first two episodes feature YouTube baking star Rosanna Pansino and beauty blogger Teni Panosian. In addition to the six episodes, each of the featured digital creators will produce videos showing their home after being made over, which will be distributed on their YouTube channels and other social platforms. These videos will also drive people to Amazon to shop for featured products.
Amazon, of course, has made a big splash in recent years producing and distributing prestige TV shows like “Transparent” and “The Man in the High Castle.” But those series ostensibly exist to sell Amazon Prime subscriptions.
While Amazon has featured commerce-related video content on its site for a while from companies like the female focused Stylehaul, this is the first time it’s produced a show explicitly designed to facilitate shopping.
Kristiana Helmick, director of home innovation at Amazon, said the idea for the series was born out of Amazon’s ongoing retail partnership with Lemieux.
“Amazon Home is constantly looking to innovate and find ways to bring our customers inspiration when searching for products,” said Helmick. “The ‘Overhaul’ series is a great opportunity to provide our customers with some curation and guidance when searching through our large selection of products and we continue to look for new and different ways to do that. … This is the first time Amazon has had a co-branded storefront tied to a video series.”
If successful, “Overhaul” could spark an potent trend, one that Amazon would be uniquely positioned to exploit. For years, people in the media world have talked about a future where you can watch your favourite show and buy a character’s outfit (the talk has been around for so long, the example many have used was “you’ll soon be able to buy Ross’s shirt on “Friends.”)
Kin Community was originally built as a web video company focused on women. In recent years, it’s evolved into a boutique multi-channel network, working with YouTube talents like Pansino and Hannah Hart to produce and distribute original shows, and also help them connect with marketers. Last year, Kin raised $US13.5 million in new funding.