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MikMak Is The Smartphone-Based Reinvention Of The Infomercial

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The word “infomercial” likely doesn’t inspire a lot of excitement out of you. But whether you’ll admit it or not, you (just like me) have been sucked into watching an infomercial or the Home Shopping Network (perhaps hosted by Mariah Carey) at least once.

That’s because the idea of shopping via video is actually quite attractive, but the old-school infomercials airing at 2 a.m. on TV simply don’t live up to the standards of the young, content-hungry consumer.

Enter MikMak.

MikMak is a new app that lets consumers shop through video, combining a hint of BuzzFeed-style humor with the utility of the Home Shopping Network, all from your phone.

MikMak handles the content creation and production for all of its retail partners (for free, by the way), and asks for a percentage of each sale made through the platform. This fee is, on average, higher than most third-party distribution platforms since MikMak handles all the costs of production.

The company brings in comedians and other entertainers to host most of the videos (some are simply set to cool music), and most of the videos I’ve watched to test out the app have actually made me laugh out loud. On average, each video (the company is calling them ‘minimercials’) lasts around 30 seconds.

MikMak will sell just about anything, as long as it’s not apparel.

“We really want to combine utility with fun,” said founder Rachel Tipograph. “The shopping experience should be entertaining and simple, so we focus a lot of our energy on items that are easy to buy without physically touching them.”

That includes accessories, beauty products, gadgets, jewelry, and home goods.

The company has been in an open (but not publicized) beta for the past few months and seen 2.5x the retention of average mobile commerce. Thus far, MikMak averages about a hundred videos per month, with 25 different New York-based hosts on rotation to create new videos.

If you want to check out MikMak, download the beta here.