We’ve been talking video a lot recently, with the popularity of Snapchat and the brand new Instagram Stories feature.
Pre-recorded videos are one thing. Sure, you have to plan a bit and create good content. But you basically get unlimited do-overs. Don’t like the look of a 10 second Snapchat video? Made a mistake while filming your Instagram story? No big deal! You can re-film and post something better. There’s not a lot of pressure in terms of the actual filming.
But with live video, you can’t re-film. Your audience gets to see you unfiltered. And you have to be able to go with the flow and keep things interesting.
While it may be a bit more challenging, live video is still a worthy endeavor for your business. Here’s how:
It helps you generate more leads. Kim Garst, founder of Boom Social, managed to create over 17k new opt-ins directly from Periscope Live Video in 2015.
You can get real-time feedback. Want to know what your audience thinks of a new product idea, or what some of their biggest problems are right now? You can get feedback and information like this by interacting with your audience over live video.
Stand out from your competition. Most businesses hide behind the comfort of a typical social media post. When you go live, you give your audience a different, unique experience.
All of this is only scratching the surface. Live video will only become more and more important for your business.
The purpose of this article is to help you learn how to master it. So, let’s dive in!
How to Create Live Audience That Your Audience Will Love!
Choose Your Platform(s)
When it comes to live video, there are several platforms to choose from. But today we’ll reference the main two (which we believe you can most benefit from)…
Facebook and Periscope.
So, which should you choose? We think both! In the same way that you can use both Instagram Stories and Snapchat, you can use Periscope and Facebook Live.
With Facebook Live, you communicate with your Facebook audience, and with Periscope you communicate with your Twitter audience.
At the same time, if being on both Periscope and Facebook Live overwhelms you, don’t sweat it. Remember: You don’t have to be on every social network! So, if you have to choose one, err on the platform for which you have a bigger audience (Facebook for Facebook Live and Twitter for Periscope).
As for the technical how-to on these platforms, you can check out these links:
How-to Guide for Facebook Live
How-to Guide for Periscope
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get into how to actually create the live video your audience will love!
Write an Awesome Description
On Facebook Live, the description will show up underneath the video. On Periscope, you just have a title to work with, and it’s limited to 120 characters. You need to make both of these compelling.
Your Facebook Live description should capture your audience’s attention by giving them a clear benefit of attending the live broadcast. Your Periscope title should do the same, just in fewer words.
For example, “Want to learn the 3 proven strategies for succeeding with Facebook Live? Check out this live broadcast!”
Promote the Broadcast Beforehand
Like all things marketing, live video requires some promotion. In the days and hours leading up to your live broadcast, you should build anticipation and let people know you’ll be broadcasting live.
For example, you could say: “Have questions about Facebook Live? I’ll be going #live at 10am this morning for a Facebook Live Q&A! Hope to see you there!”
Infuse Calls to Action
You should have calls to action for pretty much all of your content. Live video is no different.
Here are some calls to action you can use throughout and at the end of your live broadcast:
Ask viewers to subscribe to live notifications, so they get notified the next time you go live
Ask viewers to go to a URL and sign up for a free opt-in related to your video
Ask viewers to comment and share the broadcast
Interact With Commenters
Live video gives you the unique opportunity to interact with your audience in real-time. So, you should take advantage!
With both Facebook Live and Periscope, users can “like” the video and leave comments (you should also encourage them to do so!).
So, try and respond to some of the comments in your video, and even call out the person’s name when you answer their question. This will get them excited and encourage other viewers to engage with the video as well.
Note: If possible when using Facebook Live, have another person on desktop to answer and respond to commenters’ questions. You may not be able to answer them all, and if you’re filming something like a live event or an interview, you may not be able to answer any questions until the end – so a desktop “helper” can be key!
Reintroduce Yourself and the Video Topic
Throughout your live stream, people will be joining in. So, every 5 or so minutes, you should do a quick reintroduction of yourself and the topic. That way, new viewers can get caught up quickly (think of how sports radio broadcasters repeat the scoreboard).
So, if I was filming a Facebook Live video about how to create awesome live videos, I could say something like…
“Just to recap, I’m Dave Perrotta from ARCH Digital Agency. Today, we’re talking about how to create live video that your audience will love. And yes this is live, and yes it’s meta, and yes, it’s awesome!”
Don’t Try to Be Perfect
With live video, you’re going to make mistakes. There are all kinds of hiccups that can happen in a presentation. You may get a question you don’t know how to answer, or have an unforeseen audio problem.
Take a deep breath and keep your composure. It’s okay. Above all, focus on being real and authentic with your audience. They’re expecting some real-time action, not necessarily a polished performance.
So, some mistakes are okay, and a little vulnerability is great as well. It makes you real in a world where so many businesses lack authenticity.
Nail the Audio and Visual
This is simple, but important. Make sure you’re speaking clearly into the microphone (or your phone) and also make sure the lighting is good. That way, you can deliver a good experience to your audience so they stay on for the length of your broadcast.
How Long Should You “Go Live”?
Aim to go live for at least 10 minutes. With Facebook Live, the maximum broadcast time is 90 minutes so be sure to keep this in mind.
But by broadcasting for at least 10 minutes, you give your audience a chance to hop on the broadcast, interact with you, learn something, and take action.
Some Ideas for Your Next Live Video…
Many of the ideas that will work well for your Snapchat and Instagram videos will also work well with live video.
Here are some good ideas to get you started:
Behind-the-scenes footage. Show how your product is created or your service is done, or show your team spitballing ideas in the office. People love seeing what’s typically off-limits.
Host interviews. Perhaps you can have an influencer in your industry hop on video with you to answer some questions. Or, you can simply interview your company’s employees.
Broadcast live events. Perhaps you’re at an interesting event like a startup conference. You can share it and engage with your audience while you’re filming
Q&A. Take time to answer your audience’s most pressing questions.
Educational Content. Spend some time educating your audience on a solution to a problem they’re facing.
Video is becoming more and more important in today’s business world. And live video will only continue to grow.
So, use this post as a springboard and start using live video for your business!
Have you tried live video yet? What has your experience been like? Let us know in the comments below!