Video has reigned king on social media for a while now, being the most-consumed content across every platform, and experts predict that its growth will continue as it is projected to account for 82 percent of internet traffic by 2022, a growing share of which will take the form of live streaming.
Over the past few years, live video has exploded in the digital sphere, originally making its mark on the gaming industry through platforms like Twitch. Now, it has spread to mainstream social media and is available on all of the major platforms. The rise in popularity of going live is changing the way brands interact with their audiences by engaging viewers in ways that are more challenging through more two-dimensional platforms.
PR pros, here are some tips on how to optimize live video streaming to get the most out of your social strategy and better serve your clients:
- Going live is not just for influencers. While many associate live videos with fashion bloggers showing their audience their latest shopping haul, streaming can also be utilized on professional platforms. LinkedIn recently rolled out a live feature for conference calls, trade shows, keynote speeches, product announcements and more. Live video is great to utilize during events, maximizing viewership past those in attendance to reach audiences of unprecedented scale.
- Stream with a group. Twitter recently introduced a new feature that allows users to host a live video and invite up to three people as guests for a group discussion broadcasted to followers. This new tool is something that we have never seen before in the social sphere. Think of it as a 2019 twist on calling into a radio show and joining the conversation, except everyone can see that you’re in your pajamas.
- Promote before you begin. Before going live, PR pros can let the social media audience know what time the video will take place and what will be covered through a post or a story to pique interest. If a Q&A-style video is planned, this is a prime opportunity to gather questions beforehand.
- Identify a goal. What is your brand trying to achieve? Maybe the client is looking to grow their following, boost sales of a specific product or increase email signups. Although it can be tempting to combine several different goals into one video, it’s best to stick with one. For example, if you’re trying to boost brand awareness and show off company culture by going behind-the-scenes of daily operations, avoid making the video sales-y by pushing a product or service.
- Reap the benefits. When someone goes live on Instagram, their profile is automatically bumped to the front of the ‘Stories’ feed and Instagram sends out a push notification inviting users to join. The story then stays viewable, and users can see what others commented in real-time even after the video is over. One of the major features of live video streaming is that it takes away the one-sidedness that social media often portrays.
Marketers can, and should, capitalize on the rise of live video. Thanks to its personal and off-the-cuff nature, live video presents an ideal outlet for how-to videos, ‘fireside’ chats and more, all while generating live feedback, which helps establish intimacy and immediacy with the audience. Live video is the ultimate secret weapon for your social strategy.