Live streaming video is a low-cost, high-impact way to connect with potential customers, especially for live events, real-time happenings and product launches. It also lends a great deal of authenticity to your brand and when done well, is a great way to build relationships at scale.
In today’s mobile-first world, video is an essential component and often the ‘go-to’ type of content for marketers. The two-way communication that live video enables, helps keep audience attention whilst the authenticity of the experience creates a stronger connection between the brand and consumers – making it a very effective engagement strategy.
“Live video has several major advantages for marketers,” Fritz Brumder, CEO and co-founder Brandlive, told Marketing Dive. “First, consumers are engaging — i.e. watching longer — at higher levels versus canned video, according to the data.
“People enjoy the unpredictable and interactive nature of live video, and as a result stick around longer,” he added. “Secondly, live video is easier and less expensive to produce. There is not a need for an expensive set, or a detailed script, and no post-production.”
So what are some great ways to use live video to your brand’s advantage?
- Live events are the perfect arena for live video because there is something interesting to watch, a good story to tell and a reason for the audience to stay watching. “The ability to directly merchandise and sell from a live video event is also very compelling. We have customers who sell out their entire inventory from a single live video event” says Jeremy Vest, CEO and founder of Vidpow.
- “Another great use of live streaming is real-time information, so if something in your industry just changed, then it might be great to start talking about it seconds after it happens,” Vest said. “With recording and editing video you could be too late to the story.” This could be in the context of a product launch or as a means of ‘piggy-backing’ off a breaking news story.
- A live Q&A video where you answer any questions your followers might have is a great way to build up trust and your credibility as an expert in your field. Make sure you specify the general parameters of the questions you will be answering so that there are some guidelines. If the questions are too broad you might loose the focus and attention of some viewers – or worse get caught out by a question you don’t know the answer to!
- Training videos or product demonstrations where viewers can ask directed questions are another great way to boost engagement and give people the answers they are looking for.
Proceed with caution
- Obviously, not everyone makes a great TV personality – no matter how much they may practice in the shower. Having someone who gets a little camera shy or stuck for words could do more damage than harm so choose who you want to represent your brand well.
- Be aware that as with all live broadcasts – things can go wrong. I’m sure at one time or another we’ve all seen some poor newscaster have to run with the situation when things get a little crazy or don’t go to plan (if you haven’t seen one then do a google search – the results are often hilarious)! So make sure you’re ok to go with the flow.
- Make sure that whatever you are filming – you are actually allowed to film it. Imagine that you start filming at an event only to have some lovely guards come and tell you off in front of your followers – might be funny but perhaps not the brand impression you were hoping to leave.
Live video is the “best” way to build human connections with customers at scale in the digital marketing world, Brumder added. He said it’s easy to manage and effective, and pointed out that predictions have over 80% of digital traffic video-based by 2020, making video a mandatory skill for marketers to learn.
“Don’t over-analyze this,” Brumder stated. “It is a low-risk, low-cost, high-impact way to build relationships, and customers will vote with their engagement.”
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