Amazon jumps into live linear streaming, ties in shoppers with premiere of 'Style Code Live'

It's live, it's ad-free, and it's open for all to see: Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) debuted its first live-streamed online show on Tuesday night, Style Code Live, a daily lifestyle program focusing on fashion and beauty.

The show won't be monetized through advertising -- rather, Amazon is leveraging its status as an online retail juggernaut to make products featured on the show available for purchase from a gallery situated below the video player.

Amazon executives have, for several quarters, mentioned the tendency of its Prime subscribers to cross over and purchase items on its retail website. Style Code Live appears to be the first concrete move the company has made to directly monetize that observation.

"Style Code Live gives viewers a first-of-its-kind daily style and entertainment experience. We're live, interactive, and covering the latest trends in fashion and beauty each weeknight--with guest experts, celebrities, and viewer tips," said Terence Noonan, executive producer of the new series.

Lyndsey Rodrigues, Rachel Smith and Frankie Grande host the series.

Boosting Prime Video's viewership alongside its retail division could provide a little shot in the arm to Amazon. The company missed its sales forecasts in the fourth quarter of 2015, posting an EPS (earnings per share) of just $1 instead of the Street's estimates of $1.56. Its shares took a dip on that news--a new development among its investors, who in the past were pretty much unruffled by lackluster earnings as the company focused on growth and innovation.

In the meantime, Amazon's Prime subscribership jumped 51 percent for the full year, proving that its SVOD service is catching on with cord shavers and cutters.

Now Amazon is trying out a few new tactics for its retail side, such as opening a brick-and-mortar store in Seattle, with a second one planned for San Diego. Tying video content into its retail offerings could build a new audience segment of devoted shoppers, not just viewers.

For more:
- see the release
- see this Verge article

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