An 80s throwback; eBay taps Facebook for live infomercials

Daisy Doctor
By Daisy Doctor | 15 June 2017

Ebay Australia is taking a different approach to its annual 'Hump Month' sale, streaming a weekly Facebook Live infomercial for the month of June.

The tongue-in-cheek sale aims to capture the excitement of a live broadcast, by using infomercial hosts played by Melbourne comedians Miles O’Neil and Glen Walton, along with Aussie actress Holly Austin.

The campaign, from Vice's in-house agency Virtue and directed by Tim White, will be running each Wednesday of 'Hump Month', totalling 16 hours of live broadcast coverage over the four days.

The idea was to recreate the infomercials of the 1980s which were “a huge part of the Australian advertising world,” says eBay head of communications Amber Morris.

“Let's face it, the end of financial year sales can be pretty bland – our idea for the campaign was to inject a little of humour into 'Hump Month' in a way that was colourful and full of personality,” Morris says.

The campaign splits away from previous 'Hump Month' sales initiatives from eBay. In previous years, the campaigns featured a Hump Month man who serenaded audiences with blender and power-tool ballads.

“We wanted to approach this year's campaign differently, so we thought about what people are doing in June; they're hibernating.

“People order UberEats and can go on dates in the palm of their hand, so we invented a word which harnesses the behaviour already happening in Australia as temps get colder , 'buybirnating',” adds Morris.

eBay says while adopting Facebook Live as the sales platform was risky, it's already a success.

“We were nervous at first, but we feel the platform has grown so much in the last six months, we plan to continue using it.”

In May, Tim MacKinnon replaced Steve Brennon as CMO of eBay Australia and New Zealand.

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