Let’s Talk About Live Streaming

Live streaming is the sharing of content in real-time across the web – and it is being adopted on a large scale by brands of all sizes.  When managed effectively, live streaming can be a powerful tool in your video marketing catalogue.

Let’s look at some of the ways that Live Streaming can benefit your business:

Benefits of Live Streaming

One of the most obvious benefits of Live Streaming is the opportunity to grow and expand your audience.  It also releases you from the physical boundaries of your location, and opens up the global marketplace with its prospective customers. Live Streaming is not geographically confined so your audience doesn’t have to be either.

Another benefit of setting up a live stream is the sense of urgency that is created when a piece of content is only available for a limited time.  Unlike an evergreen piece of content that can be consumed anytime, a live stream is an event – something for people to enter into their calendars and look forward to.  Creating some pre-promotion around that event will make sure it gets the maximum amount of attention, and impressions.

Live streaming can also create a new avenue to foster interaction with your clients. A live chat accompanying your stream, can get you instantaneous, unfiltered feedback. These honest insights are invaluable to any company, and can only happen when you have an engaged, interactive community.

Depending on the type of content you plan to stream, if you feel confident that it is either exclusive or valuable enough to monetize you can charge viewers to access it.  Good candidates for a revenue-generating stream include educational content, unique or hard-to-find subject matter, or events on a large scale (such as concerts) that people are willing to pay to view in the privacy of their own home.  Convenience and utility are a good indicator of whether your content will make it into a revenue-generating stream.

As a relative newcomer to the video marketing oeuvre, live streaming allows you to position your brand as an adopter of newer technologies and techniques – and one more way to set your company apart.  In industries where live streaming is not yet the norm, your brand will stand out as the one that brought the medium to your niche.

When to Use Live Streaming:

So what are some of the best ways to use live streaming for your business?

  • For larger companies, the ability to live stream a product release, or training seminar to employees in different locations helps you to build and foster a sense of internal community, while also ensuring that your message is making it to all your employees in the same tone, from one source. Scaling a training message is also more cost-effective and efficient.
  • In industries where new product launches and service announcements occur, a live streamed release will increase the awareness of your new product and also elevate its presence. A live streamed event connotes a certain level of public-relations awareness and attaches a cachet to your brand in the eyes of both current and prospective clients.
  • Take a page out of the successful playbook of bigger companies that use Live Streaming to make their major announcements even more newsworthy. And the boost in online mentions of your company name also add to your SEO efforts, as a side benefit of the process.

Live Monitoring

During a live streaming event, your audience is likely to be simultaneously discussing the event on your streaming platform, and hopefully more widely on social media.  This can provide you with two things: 1) an increase in brand mentions and promotion online, where word of mouth is now essentially working for you – and 2) feedback on what your audience thinks about your company, and the information it is sharing.  You can tell through these discussions whether your Live Stream is getting across the message you were hoping it would – in real time. This allows you the opportunity to also modify the messaging instantly, if it is not performing as you’d hoped.

Important to Remember

  • The difference between live streaming and more traditional forms of video marketing, that the majority of the work goes into the pre-production. Thorough planning and attention to detail ahead of your live streamed event is what will make it go off without a hitch. Going live is scary!  Make sure you set your team up for a win by going over your pre-production strategy in detail to troubleshoot as many possible scenarios that may arise in advance of your stream.  Many content marketing agencies will now offer this service on their production menu – should your team prefer to have the stream managed for them.
  • The costs associated with live streaming are lower than classic video production due to its ephemeral nature. It can therefore be a very affordable brand of video marketing. As with everything of course, you get what you pay for – therefore the more pre-production time and live monitoring attention you can assign to this content, the better it will reflect on your brand.
  • Your live stream is a great way to promote your brand and message, however you still need to get eyes on that stream for it to work. This means that you still need to get the word out about your live event, using whatever method works best for you – from e-mail blasts and social media campaigns to drive viewership for your stream when it’s time to go live.

Where to Begin

  • YouTube Live is a great starting point for your Live Stream efforts.  Not only is it extremely user-friendly, working easily from your webcam, but it also gives you access to YouTube’s built in audience, by making your stream available for everyone in its broad user base.

Properly deployed, a live stream can be a useful addition to your online marketing efforts with a relatively low entry point for cost and investment of resources.  If you’d like to know more about how to get live streaming working for your company, feel free to ask us for more information at solutions@incitecreative.ca

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