Finding new tactics to grow your business is a daunting task, especially when your competitors do the exact same things. In this scenario, you need to make yourself different. The old marketing strategies won’t help you. The best way to attract your audience is to use new platforms where they engage often. That’s where live streaming comes into the picture. It’s no secret that videos generate lots of traffic, views, and engagement. Though slowly, but surely a live video is getting established as the future of online video marketing,
Live Streaming on Social Media
It all began in 2011 with You Now, a live streaming app started streaming for the first time. Later in 2014, we saw the launch of Snapchat. A year later, Twitter integrated Periscope, a live streaming app into their social platform. Later in 2016, Facebook launched Facebook live and many social media giants including YouTube and Instagram followed it.
Video Grabs More Attention
80% of online users prefer watching a video than reading the content. The number of people staying tuned to live streaming content is increasing too. Popular video content marketers state that they drive 41% traffic higher than others. It reaches 100% more audience than a photo post. All these shows and constant growth in the popularity of live streaming among internet users. Considering the previous year, 2019 will be an even bigger year considering both audience and brands have settled into the format now.
Why Social Media
The majority of brands choose social media as the Live Streaming Platform to host videos for several reasons, as mentioned below.
Social Media Platforms are Free
You need not invest any money for live streaming on any of the social media platforms. Having a smartphone with a good camera, and an internet connection, the mobile app is just enough to start with live streaming. However, if you want a professional grade streaming quality, you can go for professional live streaming applications like Ustream.
While live streaming itself is a great engagement booster, social media platforms combine an array of interactive features like live commenting, sharing, stickers and donations. Add it to your profile and users can take part in discussions even after the event is finished. If you are representing a brand, you can also conduct live streams in the form of a chat session or Q & A session to interact with your audience.
Live Video Content Shows to Dominate Social Media Feed
Facebook live and Instagram live has received a high uptake. Therefore in social media feeds, in the coming years, we expect to see more video content. Social media uses text and images to express opinions and feelings. With the introduction of live video content on social media, both people and brands prefer video content to express their feelings. Therefore, it is one of the biggest social media trends that are here to stay for long.
With the introduction of a live broadcast on Facebook and Instagram, this trend is gaining traction across all Live Streaming Platforms. Brands have also been using live video content in their marketing campaigns.
Masters of Storytelling Will Dominate Live Streaming
We have been seeing many brands utilizing live streaming to market their products and services. However, the more engaging content is, the chances are high for it to create an impact. We will soon see social media dominated by storytellers.
Wondering how to start a live streaming business? The secret to reaping success with live streaming is sharing stories in a unique way that your users feel the appeal. While individuals take advantage of features like Instagram or Facebook live to share personal stories, the brand will move towards investing in advanced technology like Facebook watch to broadcast their stories through shows.
The Challenges and Drawbacks of Live Video
The most prominent challenge that businesses face with live video content is that they are live. The live content demands authenticity in a way that is not easy for businesses to deal with.
Consider this example- A small business goes live to show the new collections in their store. In the background, you hear noises and disturbances that make it difficult to what is being spoken. Along with such things, live streaming also poses the challenges of unexpected interruptions. Maybe it can be any technical difficulty or interruptions like the phone starts ringing or something else. Or simply, an unexpected disruption comes in the form of you slip up and say something incorrect or even stumble.
With live video, things always happen in live and you can’t go back to re-record the video to make it perfect. This can bring in pressure, but if you follow best practices, you can take care of this.
Live Video Streaming Best Practices
All the live video content best practices come down to preparation. Though it’s live and at the moment, you have to be prepared for it as it would be any client interaction. You have to represent your business well and make a good impression.
Some of the best practices include:
Have an idea of what you want to present in the live streaming ahead of time. Go through the content until you are comfortable with it. This makes you comfortable with what you have to present and the chances are less to go blank when you go live.
Have Notecards Handy
Though you have practiced the content and got familiar with it, it is better to keep notecards handy. Have your content written in bullet points so that you can quickly go through what you want to talk in the live video.
Make Sure the Location is Brightly Lit
Choose a location that is quiet and doesn’t have background noises. Similarly, the location must be well lit and free of any possible interruptions.
Announce That You are Going Live Ahead of Time
If you want to improve the views and engagements, let your users know when you are going live before you actually do. For example, Facebook makes it easy with their scheduling features, but even on other social media platforms, you can post a day or so in above. There are facilities to remind users an hour before. Ensure that you cross-promote on other social media platforms, too.
Choose Strong Headline and Descriptions
This helps you stand out and get more viewers. It also keeps users to have an idea about what you will present in your video. As you will have viewers entering and exiting throughout the video, it is recommended to have a clear headline and description so that people understand the essence of your video. The only exception is Instagram, which doesn’t have the option to create descriptions.
It is a great idea to save and share your video alter with your users. This maximizes the reach of the video and allows users who couldn’t actually watch you live to listen to your content. You can share the video on other platforms if it meets the time requirements.
How Successful Brands Get Results with Live Streaming in Social Media?
Have a Plan
Live streaming is not about the produced video. It is not a place for polished talks. Start it casually, ask questions to your followers, and have them talk to you. People want to see who you are in real. Live streaming is a real kind of two-way exchange. There is always a market for polished and produced video, but a Live Streaming Platform is not meant for that.
Viewers will have questions and they won’t be ready to wait till you finish. Have a clear strategy on how you will pull it off. When your plan isn’t working, adopt spontaneity by ditching the script. Plan, change, adjust, let go and have fun interacting with your audience.
Let Your Audience Know You Value Them
Once you start the live streaming, welcome your audience and thank them. Tell them how much you care and value them. Use these conversations to make your content strong. Brands who can establish a strong connection with the audience are likely to succeed with their live streaming efforts. This connection makes your viewers believe you. Another great thing with engaging your audience is discovering their needs and using it to sharpen your marketing strategy.
Be Ready to Trust People and Take Risks
Investing in ideas and people are much more important than technology. Invest in and empower your best storytellers. Popular brands conduct short Q&A sessions before a show or match and use live streaming to weigh in behind the scenes or the actual show. The key to finding success with live streaming is to collaborate with others and explore new things. You need not do it alone, you can invite others to extend the reach of your brand to their networks. This requires trusting people.
Demonstrate Business Value for Your Audience
Use the live streaming to initiate conversations, offer your customers significant information, highlight employees and fans. Sharing the behind-the-scenes clips with your audience is yet another way to thank them and help share your brand story. When done right, this gives returns in terms of downloads, publicity, customer engagement, lead generation, and influencer marketing.
The world of live streaming and social media is constantly undergoing changes and deriving new ways to reach customers. Thanks to technological advancements and improvements in networks and connectivity, we can now watch our favorite personalities in real time. Live streaming can cover a large number of topics from video games to sports. Social networking applications and live streaming platforms have introduced new features, giving users a genuine way to connect with brands and celebrities.