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Walmart has unveiled its first-ever original reality series developed for the web, through which the mega-retailer is asking the public which new products from American entrepreneurs should appear on shelves this fall. The first episode can now be viewed at getontheshelf.walmart.com.
The new weekly web series highlights 20 finalists from its "Get on the Shelf" crowd-sourcing product contest. Each week, four finalists will showcase their product in an effort to gain public votes and get their item sold on Walmart.com, and possibly in Walmart stores.
"Get on the Shelf celebrates the resilient and tenacious spirit of American entrepreneurs, many of whom have been working hard for a big break like this," said Kelly Thompson, SVP of merchandising for Walmart.com. "The web series creates more exposure for finalists to share their inspiring stories, which makes for captivating reality TV that's also interactive since American consumers can vote for the next great product at Walmart.com."
The five weekly "webisodes" feature a group of finalists under the same theme, such as Kid Stuff or Great Gadgets. The webisodes give viewers a chance to learn more about the entrepreneurs behind the inventions and watch as they pitch their product to a panel of Walmart.com judges.
After each weekly webisode, voters have 72 hours to cast their votes for the winner, who will have their product sold on Walmart.com. A grand-prize winner will also be selected based on the number of preorders of the product, and will receive additional support marketing from Walmart.com plus an introduction to the Walmart stores' merchandising team to potentially be sold in Walmart stores. Last year’s three winning products are currently available.
Walmart operates 10,800 stores under 69 banners in 27 countries and e-commerce websites in 10 countries.