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Brief Published: 14 Apr 2016

Waitrose’s Live-Streamed Cows

Waitrose set to live stream from its farms

In a bid to reassure customers about the provenance of its produce, UK supermarket chain Waitrose is about to launch a campaign featuring live streams and TV ads of same-day footage from its supplying farms. The spring campaign from London-based communications agency Adam & Eve DDB will be supplemented with national print ads using images taken at Waitrose farms within 24 hours of publication.

To underline its guarantee that all cows used for its dairy ranges have access to open grazing, a cow equipped with a GoPro camera will provide footage from a farm in Berkshire for the opening TV commercial, airing on April 15 2016. Waitrose will also live-stream footage from its own farm – Leckford Estate in Hampshire – to digital ad screens in some of the UK's busiest train stations, allowing commuters to observe its beehives and tranquil views of the countryside. The campaign taps into behind-the-scenes trends we explore in Get Real.

Consumer interest in live streaming as a format is strong. On April 8 2016, entertainment site BuzzFeed managed to capture the attention of 800,000 live viewers with a Facebook live video of two employees bursting a watermelon with rubber bands. The video has since accrued more than 10 million views.

At its F8 developer conference in San Francisco this week, Facebook announced the launch of new audience interactivity tools for its live video feature, as well as opening it up to streams from any device. With a user base of 1.5 billion and built-in interactivity, the social network makes a strong case for the opportunity presented to brands by the live-streaming audience.

For more on this format, see our report on Live-Streaming Strategies and Five New Channels for Social Media Marketing.