Aly Yale | October 10, 2018

Facebook Live is a fun, affordable, and easy way to engage existing customers and get more leads, but many brands struggle with using it properly.

Some think live videos are just for influencers, celebrities, and social media icons, while others just don’t believe they have the right content for live streaming. Whatever the reason, they avoid live video at all costs, opting for scripted, sterile marketing videos, or even worse, no video at all.

Considering that 20% of all Facebook videos are live nowadays (and that live video viewing has grown a whopping 400% on the platform since last year), taking this stance can be a grave mistake, leaving companies unrelatable, inauthentic, and irrelevant.

Looking for a better way to approach live videos? Just get creative. Though you may not have a new hit song to preview or a partnership with some big celeb, there’s still plenty you can do to engage and interact with your customers in a live setting. Here are just a few ways organizations are using Facebook Live to their advantage:

1. For Events

With live video streaming, geographical barriers are a thing of the past. Whether it’s letting your followers see your trade show booth, experience your latest town hall meeting, or walk the links with you during your upcoming golf tournament, live streaming can make followers feel a part of your brand no matter where they are or what they’re doing.

2. To Unveil/Tease New Products

Live videos are great for previewing and demoing new products. Start with a sneak peek that builds excitement (people love to think they’re in on a big secret). Then, once the product is out, have your team go live to walk customers through setting it up and using it. You can even create additional videos around customer questions as feedback starts to come in.

3. For Breaking News and Announcements

Using Facebook Live can make your latest news seem urgent and important, and it can also help build hype around your announcements. Live videos also give you the benefit of push notifications, which make the news feel even more important and timely. Try using your CEO or another important company figure in breaking news announcements to give the videos even more clout.

4. For Q&As

Since users can interact with live videos, they’re a great way to conduct Q&A sessions. Use them like a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything), and let customers ask questions of your company’s movers and shakers, or pair it with a new product release or demo and have users inquire about features, set-up, and other details. You could even use your live Q&A as a sort of market research group and ask for feedback on your products, services, or offerings.

5. To Offer a Peek Behind the Curtain

If you really want to build brand loyalty, customers need to get to know you — the way you run your business and the people who run it for you. Live videos are the perfect tool to do just that. Use them to offer a behind-the-scenes look at your office, your team, and day-to-day happenings, and make users feel like they’re truly a part of your business and its success. You can even give viewers a tour of your building or facility or take them along to a meeting or internal event. The main goal? Break down those walls between business and customer, and let them step inside.

Some other creative ideas: interview a trailblazer in your industry, host a special guest or live performance, or teach your viewers how to do or create something (I know I’m not the only one that loves those cooking videos by Tasty, right?) ?), . The options are literally endless.

Tips for Success

If you do decide to go live, Facebook has a few recommendations to make sure your stream is a success:

  • Build anticipation. Let your followers know when to expect your next broadcast, so they can get excited and plan to tune in.
  • Make sure you have a strong WiFi connection. No one wants jumpy video or out-of-sync audio when watching a live stream, so go somewhere with a strong WiFi signal or a 4G network if possible.
  • Create a persuasive description. Your description will show up in people’s feeds once you go live (and when your video lives on afterward), so make it a creative, concise, and intriguing one that makes people want to click.
  • Ask your audience to subscribe. Make sure to call for subscriptions during your live videos. This will give viewers automatic notifications next time you’re streaming.
  • Interact with your viewers. Answer their questions, reply to their comments and call a few out by name. Make them feel welcome and recognized.

As with anything, it may take a few tries before you feel fully comfortable with Facebook Live. But remember, it’s meant to be a real, authentic, and off-the-cuff interaction with both your current customers and your potential ones. It doesn’t need to be scripted or even fully-planned out, and you don’t need any fancy equipment or editing software to make it happen. Embrace the spontaneity of it, and let yourself and your audience have fun with it. The rest will fall in line.

To learn more about Facebook Live streaming or to get help using this innovative tool for your brand, contact Tobe today.

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