Time to fall in love with livestreaming?

by: Charley Emery-Miller

Are you looking to increase your brand awareness in an authentic, affordable and engaging way? Then perhaps livestreaming is the answer.

Why live stream?

While it was impossible for us to all be together in person, livestreaming grew by 99% between April 2020 and the previous year, with everything from club nights to church services getting in on the act. Although the exponential rise of livestreaming has now plateaued, it’s popularity definitely isn’t decreasing, and it should be a consideration in every marketers content strategy toolkit.

There are lots of benefits to livestreaming, such as:

Cutting-through the noise

Did you know that 80% of people would rather watch a live video from a brand than read a blog? We’re not suggesting you ditch blogs entirely (they can be great SEO boosters among other benefits) but the next time you have an important update to share with your customers jumping on a live stream is a great way to increase engagement and boost your audience size.

Instant feedback

Few channels offer the opportunity for instant feedback quite like livestreaming. Live streams give you a unique opportunity to interact with your audience, whether you’re launching a new product or holding a webinar for your staff, a live stream can allow your viewers to pose questions that perhaps you hadn’t thought of yet. A live stream gives you the opportunity to build a community around your brand, creating a network of engaged and invested brand advocates (if you need evidence of this just look at the dedicated communities that Gen Z builds around their favourite YouTubers!).

The feedback generated from a live stream can be invaluable, from live audience polls to comprehensive analytics on viewer number drop offs. By going live you can start to get a deeper understanding about what matters to the people you’re talking with.

Authentic connection

90% of consumers say authenticity is important when choosing the brands they like and support. Livestreaming is a great way for your brand to achieve authenticity, by showing an unfiltered and unedited view of your business, offering your audience a direct and personal connection.

Affordability and improved ROI

Most livestreaming platforms are free, and with a just decent internet connection you can be streaming from your phone or laptop in seconds. Compared to pre-recorded videos the production expectations are lower and so you can save costs by not requiring a lot of post-production. Therefore, you can achieve higher rates of engagement from a smaller outlay. In fact, 73% of B2B businesses using live video report positive results to their ROI.

Repurposable

Once you click to end the stream that doesn’t have to be the end of the road for your video. Live stream videos usually remain available on the streamed platform and can be re-watched by those who couldn’t make the original stream, increasing the videos lifespan. The videos can also be cut up and reused across different channels to further the videos usefulness and reach.

Which livestreaming platform is right for you?

There is a long list of livestreaming platforms and choosing the right one for your brand is crucial. Here are a few examples to get you started.

LinkedIn Live

Are you a B2B seller wanting to talk to professionals? LinkedIn is the internet’s largest professional network and has nearly 700 million active users. With LinkedIn reporting that video is the fastest growing type of content on the site, it was only natural that LinkedIn Live was launched in February 2019 to cater to users’ appetites. LinkedIn Live then grew in popularity by 158% from the first to the third quarter of 2020, as it helped many to scratch the B2B networking itch during lockdowns.

Are you a B2B seller wanting to talk to professionals?

Despite LinkedIn Live offering 7x more reactions and 24x more comments than a pre-recorded video, it is an untapped opportunity with a mere 3% of marketers currently using the livestreaming function on LinkedIn. LinkedIn Live is also a useful tool for those looking to build their employer brand or drive recruitment.

Livestreaming on LinkedIn is fairly simple, but you need to apply for permission and unlike many other platforms, streaming is only available through third party broadcast tools which often come with subscription fees. Analytics from your live stream can be limited, but the information available can be powerful if you’re able to encourage engagement throughout the stream.

Twitch

Are you looking to talk to the digital-native and ad resistant Gen Z? Almost 70% of Gen Z find ads disruptive and 43% are actively using ad-blockers. This means that to reach this savvy generation you may need to look to the world of influencer marketing, and perhaps even come up with some other more innovative ideas.

Are you looking to talk to the digital-native and ad resistant Gen Z? The Twitch streaming could be something to consider

Twitch is an Amazon-owned platform and is the undisputed champion in the live stream arena, serving more than 2.9 million viewers at any time of day. Although Twitch began as a platform for gamers, the ‘Just Chatting’ channel now has more than 13.7 million followers, and anything from painting and crafting to cooking and chatting can be watched.

The Twitch community is famously anti-marketing so brands should beware and steer clear of pitches or webinars and instead think how they can creatively use the platform to reach their audience. We love this example from Wendy’s where they streamed the popular Animal Crossing: New Horizons game playing as their red-headed mascot and remaining totally in character throughout the stream.

Facebook Live

Are you looking to build brand engagement and awareness with Baby Boomers? Despite ongoing controversies and ever-emerging competition, Facebook still remains the most-used and engaged-with social platform in the world with 2.7 billion active users. With Baby Boomers increasingly on Facebook, and it being the social network Boomers are most likely to use, it’s the best platform for talking to the wealthiest generation in history.

Are you looking to build brand engagement and awareness with Baby Boomers? The Facebook Live could be for you.

Launched in April 2016, the Facebook livestreaming service lets anyone broadcast from their mobile devices straight to their Facebook News Feed. It’s quick and simple, and live videos see 3x the engagement of traditional videos on Facebook.

And despite the notion that younger demographics have totally ditched Facebook, this isn’t quite true, with the largest regular user group still sitting within the 25-34 age group, so it could be a useful tool to help you talk to Millennials too.

No matter what platform you’re using, or who your audience is, your live stream needs to embrace interactivity, have good quality video and be authentic to your brand. If you’ve not yet taken the plunge, then it may interest you to know that two-thirds of B2C marketers are now using livestreaming for marketing.

If it’s time to make livestreaming part of your marketing mix, get in touch and let our experienced team help develop a video strategy that works for you.

 

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