March 2021

Why local product experts might be the best live video hosts


The survey, conducted by Forrester and commissioned by AliExpress, sheds light on consumer sentiment towards live streaming in Europe, covering live video shopping, interactive gaming, and social media.

Respondents were asked what types of live shopping hosts they preferred the most out of these options: 

  • Well-known celebrity
  • Social media influencer
  • Product influencer (e.g., reputable influencer in the product domain)
  • Local product expert (e.g., shop assistant)
  • Direct seller from overseas

The top response, across all age groups, was local product expert:

“Since having a host who is knowledgeable about the products and who is likeable are important to a lot of surveyed consumers, most prefer having local product experts as livestream hosts (36%) instead of social media influencers (19%), product influencers (14%), well-known celebrities (11%), or direct sellers from overseas (10%). They believe local product experts are more trustworthy with their product knowledge, and they share similar cultures and languages.”

And as consumers age, they are more likely to prefer a local product expert over any other type of live shopping host. Local product experts were the preferred choice of live shopping host for 30% of respondents aged 18-34, 39% for ages 35-54, and 49% for those aged 55 and over. 

It’s tempting to think about using celebrities or social media influencers for every live shopping event. Both options have their own built-in following and guarantee a certain level of reach and engagement for your broadcast. However, relevant advocates attract highly engaged audiences, and in this case, engagement is more important than potential reach.

The Forrester survey results confirm that many consumers, across all age groups, prefer to do their live video shopping with local product experts. So if you need a host for your next sales event, look no further than your local sales team.

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