Live streaming has become explosively popular over the past several years. It began with websites like Twitch.tv, the massive online gaming community, and grew into a worldwide sensation. Twitter and Snapchat implemented live streaming options first, but Facebook quickly followed suit. Their native live streaming option is among the best online streaming platforms and is an excellent tool for increasing your engagement.
You may be thinking, “Facebook has had video for ages… what makes live streaming different?”
Traditional Facebook videos are pre-recorded and edited, then uploaded for users to watch on demand. Live streaming is much different – when you live stream, your audience sees you in real time. There is no pre-recording or editing. With live streaming, what you see is what you get.
Most Facebook users like live streaming because of its chat option. Viewers can talk amongst each other about the stream using Facebook's live comments feature. This allows viewers to ask each other or the streaming party questions in real time. After the live session, many users make the live streams into short videos and upload them as reels. People who missed live streaming can see the reels and put likes for Facebook Reels and even can comment.
When you live stream, you can interact with your audience naturally. They can ask you questions, and you can immediately answer – an invaluable feature for businesses of all types. Most people would rather get an immediate answer from a short comment than wait days for a reply to an email.
Host dedicated question and answer streams to attract a large audience. Announce your session a day or so before it takes place, so people will know where to go, and when.
Question and answer sessions are a popular use for Facebook live streaming, but there are other ways you can use the feature to benefit your online business:
- Showcase new products, and show them in action. This method is particularly popular in the tech and cosmetics industry. Give your audience a sneak-peak at your latest device, or a tutorial for your newest cosmetics release. Your audience will enjoy seeing your products in action, without any editing to disguise its shortcomings.
- Interview interest public figures live on-stream. Interviews are incredibly popular Facebook live streams. Contact leaders in your market that will interest your viewers. This will attract more viewers and legitimize your brand in the minds of your audience – which is particularly useful if you're an upcoming brand.
- Live stream behind the scenes events. Show how your products are manufactured, or give your audience a tour of your office. Give them a look at how your company operates from the inside. Not only is this content interesting, it will help you build trust with your audience.
Facebook live streaming may be relatively new, but it's invaluable to the success of your company on social media. An increasing number of brands are using Facebook live streaming to grow their audience and improve their sales, and it's quickly becoming a social media marketing standard.
What are your tips for live streaming on Facebook? How has it helped your brand? Is live streaming here to stay, or is it a short-lived trend?