Online video streaming is quickly taking over the digital space and is expected to dominate 80 percent of all consumer internet traffic by 2019. Thrive in the digital world by connecting with your audience through live video. Read on to learn how live video can help your brand stand out.
Build Awareness for Your Broadcast
No one wants to put time and effort into producing a live video that has only one viewer. Building anticipation for the broadcast is crucial to garnering engagement. First, identify the video’s purpose and the audience it would appeal to. Then, lay down the 5 W’s and let the audience know who, what, when, where and why. Inform followers about the video a day before its scheduled broadcast, and be sure to send a few reminders in the hours leading up to it. To maximize viewers, cross promote the broadcast information on all social platforms with a direct link and a trending hashtag .
Without proper thought and preparation, a live video is likely to flop. Determine why broadcasting a live video over a pre-recorded one is better for your strategy. Think about what you want to accomplish. Viewers want to be entertained, so only shoot videos that offer interesting and engaging content.
Here is a word you should be familiar with: strategy. Use audience insights to pick a day and time the majority of potential viewers will be online. If possible, choose a location that has a simple background with minimum distractions, such as background movement and noise. For example, position the camera away from frequently moving objects, such as an office fan, and avoid filming in crowded places to keep the viewer's focus on the purpose of the video.
Don’t worry if the quality of the video appears amateur, a live video is expected to be filmed on a mobile device. However, the video must be easy to understand. Test out the specifics, such as location, lighting, and noise before going live. Appoint someone with a steady hand to film, and be sure to hold the mobile device vertically. Horizontal videos won’t adapt to the mobile screen’s angle as well.
A strong WiFi or cellular connection is essential for a smooth video broadcast. When the connection is unreliable, the live video will pixelate and maybe even freeze. These video glitches can happen in crowded environments, so it is important to check the connection regularly during the video. If a smartphone is used for the video, forward the calls to steer clear of distractions that could be disruptive to the video's flow. To stay on topic and avoid awkward pauses, prepare an outline or script for the video. The script should not be followed word for word, but should be more of a guide to use while the video is rolling.
Engage Your Audience
Now that you promoted and prepared your live video, it is time to broadcast! Catch the audience’s attention with a compelling, informative caption that viewers will want to share on their Newsfeeds. Once the broadcast has begun, maintain a consistent tempo and avoid steering off topic. Facebook suggests going live for at least 10 minutes to give the audience time to sign on, engage, and share the video. A long broadcast allows viewers to watch and interact with the video while it is still “living” rather than reacting to the recording.
Mention names of viewers and respond to the live reactions, questions or comments. Viewers will be thrilled to hear a brand recognizing them individually, and this may increase their brand loyalty. Ask the audience questions and encourage their involvement with the video’s direction by listening to their suggestions. For example, if broadcasting a funny video, play truth or dare with the audience and perform some of their dares. If negative comments pop up, don’t ignore them. Instead, have a plan on how to answer them positively.
Eventually, the audience will become unresponsive. Take that as the cue to end the broadcast, even if it didn’t reach it’s expected length. Before shutting down, use a call to action that wraps up the purpose of the video, and encourage viewers to share the recording and subscribe to get updates. Some viewers may be shy and might still have questions about the video, so provide an alternate contact method for further comments. Never leave a live video without saying goodbye.
Now that you know the basics of a successful live video, get those cameras ready! If you’re still stuck on ideas, start out with something simple, such as a Q&A session, broadcasting a special announcement or event, or a behind the scenes look at your business. If you still need assistance with the creative direction for your live video, Hudson can help you plan the content and strategy that will best engage your audience.