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The Fresh Market's live commerce bet

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Feb 21, 2023
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Illustration: Sarah Grillo

Specialty grocer The Fresh Market is making a major bet on live commerce with the launch of its retail media network.

Why it matters: Retail media networks, whereby brands can advertise on an assembly of digital channels through a retailer, have ballooned into a $45 billion market.

What’s happening: The Fresh Market's network allows brands to run sponsored video ads across its live video streams.

  • The company works with vendors to create tailored livestream content featuring their products on The Fresh Market’s live-streamed broadcasts.
  • This is a departure from most retail media networks because they rely on static display and search, the company says.
  • Consumers can purchase featured products directly from The Fresh Market’s website.

By the numbers: RMNs are projected to reach $100 billion in terms of ad spending by 2026, according to McKinsey & Co.

  • By 2025, McKinsey says social commerce could grow to more than $2 trillion.
  • Drawing from its experience, The Fresh Market says its shoppable videos had conversion rates that were over 300% more than what you would get from traditional digital advertising.
  • The Fresh Market says its first four livestreams drew 2 million views.

How it works: The Fresh Market has been partnered with livestreaming commerce platform Firework since 2021.

  • The partnership allows the lift, monetary-wise, to be as light or heavy as The Fresh Market wants it to be, Miller says, but, he added, the company has posted new positions to support this team.

Of note: Firework was valued at around $750 million last year following its $150 million Series B round led by Softbank Vision Fund 2 in May.

What they’re saying: The live shopping retail media network has brought several revenue streams to bear for the company, CMO Kevin Miller tells Axios.

  • “We're selling more products more profitably,” through its streams, he says.
  • “We're also providing a terrific platform for our vendor community to be able to spend some real good quality time with our customers,” he says, because the level of engagement is extremely high.
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