Content marketers are happy to assign more of their budget towards video marketing these days because both trends and technology help to guarantee a content marketer’s investment. The trend towards online video is strong thanks to YouTube, the Google Videos search engine, videos on Google+ and the increasing number of videos on Facebook.
Technology has also made video a viable content marketing tool. More and more devices and browsers are able to view videos without generating errors, and Internet technology is so standardized and consistent that people are easily able to view videos without the videos stalling, freezing or lagging.
Facebook live streaming is a powerful content marketing tool, but it is also a risky one. The team at Essayontime conducted a study of 300 students in different colleges, and they showed that students will overwhelmingly turn away from a company if a live stream session goes badly. Today’s students are tomorrow’s consumers; do you really want to scare them away at such a tender age?
A Note On Where It Can All Go Wrong
Before getting into how to get it right, let’s cover the ways it may go wrong. Facebook live streaming is a personal way of communicating with your audience, which makes it a powerful way of connecting with your audience and it knocks down a few psychological barriers, which makes your audience a little more vulnerable. Here is what you shouldn’t do:
Do not start a fight with the trolls!
This mistake goes at the top of the list because it is most common. You are going to get trolls telling you really stupid and sometimes shocking things. Do Not Start A Fight With Trolls! It is very entertaining to see live streamers lose it and break down because of trolls, but it doesn’t help the streamer at all.
Plan to make sure your live stream ends in less than 90 minutes
Facebook will cut you off if you do not end it within 90 minutes. Don’t let it creep up on you; make sure you have a plan to wrap things up within 90 minutes.
Do not repeatedly apologize because it is annoying
The live streamers that perpetually apologize because they said something wrong or because of technical issues are the most annoying people on Facebook live stream.
Remove your verbal annoyances such as “Like”, “Basically”, “Erm” and such
There is nothing worse than a live streamer who punctuates sentences and pads sentences with pointless words. You basically don’t need to literally use these words because it is so like whatever, especially with erm videos, innit.
Prime your tech before you start
Connectivity is a big issue and one of the big reasons why many Facebook live streams are cut short. Get your tech ready before you stream.
Make sure you watch a few live stream fails
Learn from the mistakes of others. Some live streamers seem to be their own worst enemies, and some are unlucky. Every now and again, watch a few live stream failures and learn from them (the ones where the live streamers lose it are the funniest). For starters, try live stream Fails Compilation and live stream Fails And Wins.
Get your audio right
Like with all video, getting the audio right is vitally important because people may stick around to watch a poor quality picture, but they won’t stick around for poor quality audio.
Heavily promote your stream beforehand
There is no point in going live if you have nobody to interact with. You may as well make a video if you have no audience.
Give a description to your broadcast
This is a rookie mistake that some live streamers make. Search engines and apps still need written content to latch onto, and people who don’t know you will want to know what your live stream is about.
Do not put your face too close to the camera
This is a bitterly silly mistake. People simply will not watch if the screen is covered with your big face. Nobody wants to watch a live stream where they can see the pores on your face.
Live streaming too often
Live stream spammers exist. People may forgive an overactive 5-year-old boy who has a penchant for wearing his mother’s high heels, but people will not tolerate video after video coming from you.
Live streaming when you have nothing to say
Streaming with no real content is as good as spam and it will turn people away from you. Some streamers do it because they think they can make a show out of their interactions with their audience…they are wrong.
Ignoring your audience
Ignore the trolls at all costs, but do not ignore people that make genuine comments and/or ask genuine questions. There is no point in live streaming if you are not going to engage with your audience.
The Benefits Of Facebook live streaming
There is a demand for videos on Facebook and live streams on Facebook. Facebook users are posting 75% more videos than they last year. The number of views on these videos has continued to grow.
Facebook live streams have a feeling of urgency, but also a feeling of scarcity. Watchers feel as if they may miss something if they do not watch. Live streams are also far more personal than posts, images and videos, especially if you communicate with your audience as they watch.
The response you get from your live stream, be it through conversions or more followers, is completely up to you and how you conduct your live stream. Suffice it to say that if people are watching your videos right now, then they are not watching your competitors, so that is something at least.
How To Use The Facebook live Feature And What You Should Know
Click on the “Update Status” button and select the “live Video” icon. Write a very concise, a very inviting and moderately descriptive description for your live stream. You may then choose the type of audience you wish to share with. Since you are a content marketer, you should choose your audience carefully, since you probably have a target audience in mind for your live stream session.
When you are live, you will see a red icon at the top left of your screen. The word “Live” should be written next to the icon, and it will show you your number of current viewers.
Once your live stream is finished, it will be published on your profile or your page so that other people may review what happened. Remember that your live feed will appear on your profile and/or your profile page and in other people’s news feed, but once your live feed ends, your stream becomes a video, which means it may appear anywhere that a video may appear on Facebook.
Be aware that your feed will appear very highly thanks to Facebook’s small update to News Feed. It only appears highly in people’s news feed while the stream is active. It is ranked as a video as soon as it is finished. You may only customize its settings when it becomes a video file (after the stream has finished).
Make a plan for your event and build a script. Do not fly blind into your live stream. Furthermore, make sure you are going to have content that is worth seeing. Ask yourself what use your content will be once it is running, and justify how you intend to bring your audience into the event (otherwise you may as well do a pre-recorded video).
Promote your event days before you host it and consider setting up a countdown so that people know when it is coming. Send out emails and messages to people who you know will be interested in your live feed.
Practice your broadcasts with dress rehearsals, and practice streaming to your own computer to test your connectivity and your audio/visual equipment.
During The Event
Do not have a long opening sequence, the shorter your opening sequence is, the better. People that watch from the beginning are often very impatient. Introduce yourself and get on with it.
Consider quickly stating what you are going to do and show in the live feed. Do not make a meal of it, and do not try to build suspense by promising a surprise. Be factual and be quick.
For example, one Facebook live feeder introduced himself and said he would be Pokemon GO hunting today. He said he was going to try lures, he said was going to introduce Pokemon GO to a hot girl, and he mentioned a landmark he is going to visit to see which Pokemon were there. His live stream was essentially a walk in a park, but he sold it by being direct and stating exactly what he intends to do.
Engage with your audience wherever you can. The Pokemon Go live streamer asked his audience what he should do. Should he feed the Pokemon, should he use a lure, should he tell the hot girl about rare Pokemon? He even took comments on what other people saw during the video, such as following a squirrel that a viewer spotted in a tree and trying to catch it as if it were a Pokemon.
You are now able to edit your video and change its settings. You should also share it around your other social media profiles, send links to it to your subscribers, upload it to YouTube, upload it to Google+, and put it on your website or blog.
Choose a thumbnail that suits your video. Try to pull a screenshot of a dramatic moment that happened during your live stream. Take the time to improve your description to account for things that happened during the live stream, add a CTA button and add suitable tags.
There are no top tips or secrets that are going to turn your live streams into something that converts and/or brings in a bigger audience. It is up to you to keep changing and tweaking your content until you find something that draws people in and keeps them watching.
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- A Content Marketer Guide to Facebook Live Streaming - December 5, 2016