The business benefits of live streaming

The best ways to use Periscope and Facebook’s live video features.
Social media has taken the world by storm, but communicating with two lines of text is no longer enough for today’s snapchat society. The solution? Welcome to the world of live video. No longer limited to long distance calls or fun with friends, Live Streaming is the latest social media offering that brings with it a host of benefits for businesses. Two of the most prominent video streaming platforms are Periscope and Facebook’s live video feature.

Launch your business with the Periscope platform

Periscope is a live video streaming app owned by Twitter that is designed for mobile devices and Apple TV. The platform allows you to do far more than just video broadcast, it enables you to virtually hang out with your audience and interact with them in real-time. When you broadcast live videos through Periscope to your Twitter and Periscope followers you can simultaneously see any comments you receive whilst broadcasting.
The beauty of periscope is that is was designed first and foremost as a mobile app, so unlike Skype or Google Hangouts you don’t have to be tethered to a laptop or PC , letting you interact with your audience in real-time. Unlike Skype or Google Hangout, Periscope was designed as a mobile app to encourage its members to use it frequently and whilst ‘on-the-go’.

Facebook Face Off

Not one to miss an opportunity, Facebook followed Periscope’s lead with their very own version of live streaming. Facebook Live is a video feature similar to Periscope in that it allows users to stream live videos to their audience, but instead of having to use a separate app, account holders can simply stream straight from their home page. Videos created using the live streaming feature are also automatically saved to your Facebook timeline and from there they can be shared, tweeted or embedded into blog posts, making streaming and sharing easier than ever.
Live video streaming apps are an invaluable way to promote your business and here we highlight some of the best ways to make it work for you.

Live product demos

Live video lends itself extremely well to product demonstrations or product reveals. Instead of describing how your business products or services work – show your audience instead! Being able to demonstrate products or services in use in real time gives your business a competitive advantage and will help to convert potential customers into paying customers. Periscope and Facebook video streaming also give you the option to view comments from your audience as you are streaming, which means you can react to requests or answer questions about your products or services whilst the broadcast is taking place.

Get ahead of the competition

Traditional methods of content marketing include crafting blog posts and articles around industry events or news features. However, researching and writing a good blog post can take some time, allowing your competitors to catch up with you if not beat you to capitalising on industry news. If you use a video streaming app instead, your business can comment on the latest events as they are happening without the delay of creating a written article to share.

Behind-the-scenes insights

Periscope was designed to use ‘on-the-go’ and is particularly useful for giving viewers a glimpse into the day-to-day running processes of your business. Facebook live video can also be used on most mobile devices too. Maximise its potential by broadcasting content that your customers would not usually see, for example, the manufacturing process of your products. In addition, you could also do short ‘meet and greets’ with staff members that are integral to the success of your business but are not necessarily shown throughout your business’ marketing and PR activities.

Fresh content creation

Not only are the broadcasts original content in themselves, you can also repurpose them for additional content. Video transcripts can be turned into blog posts or mailshots with important information highlighted for readers. The videos can also be saved and re-shared if they contain content that is not time-specific (this is known as evergreen content).

Cross-promote your broadcasts

To get maximum coverage of your live video broadcasts you should cross-promote them on your other marketing channels. Try sending emails alerting customers of the date and time so they can tune in, promote the event on other social media channels such as Instagram and Linkedin, and create news articles on your website informing visitors of the broadcast.
You could also ask other businesses to sponsor or promote your broadcasts, particularly if their customer bases are amongst your target audiences.

Crowdsourcing opportunities

Video broadcasts enable you to react to viewers in real-time as they comment on your stream. Use this opportunity as a way to crowdsource ideas and perform audience research. Gaining feedback from your customers will help your business improve both its products or services, and its marketing efforts.