How being in-the-moment can be the most effective way to engage audiences across multiple platforms.
Of all the video marketing trends and strategies of the past few years — livestreamed video content continues to be one of the fastest growing and most effective tools available to marketers today. Especially now in 2020, as things continue to shift toward “all virtual, all the time,” livestreaming has helped companies build credibility and raise brand awareness, as well as providing an effective way to engage audiences across multiple platforms. Whether its a gated video webinar, a weekly coffee chat series or robust virtual event, customers want to experience content as it happens.
According to a study from Vimeo/Livestream, 80 percent of audiences would rather watch live video from a brand than read a blog, and 82 percent prefer live video from a brand over standard social posts.
When compared to traditional “edited” video marketing content like case studies and product demos, engagement analytics make it clear — audiences love the raw authenticity and in-the-moment nature of a livestream.
For some companies, it’s even possible to repurpose and amplify live video as a cornerstone to their overall content marketing strategies. A single recorded livestream can be transcribed and re-purposed as a blog post, the audio can serve as a podcast, and quick clips and images can even be used for social media posts.
While there are many different strategies to develop live content, many brands find success in producing thought leadership content that positions themselves as a credible resource in a given industry. Live, topic-driven interviews and engaging panels or Q&As are perfect examples of this. Audiences tune-in and look to your team as being experts in the field. Sound familiar?
Marketing webinars and podcasts have followed this exact model for years. The difference is usually the barrier to entry. Marketers have a long history of gating webinars behind a registration that can often be a deterrent. Think of what you want your videos to accomplish. If your goals are increasing community engagement and brand awareness, break down the gate and focus on a multi-stream/multi-platform approach.
Keeping up the Pace
One thing to keep in mind: live videos can’t be used with a one-and-done approach. In order to build an audience, it’s crucial that your company produces content at a regular cadence — weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. Think of your new live content plan like producing a TV show. You’ll want to release new episodes every week, promote upcoming guests and content, and remind viewers when and where to tune in.
Once an episode airs you can even create shareable snack-sized clips from your stream that, once amplified on social media, promote and encourage more people to watch even after the stream has aired.
Keeping the Brand Strong
Try to find the underlying theme to your content and develop a series name and style. If you need ideas, research your target audience and look into what types of content they are more likely to engage with.
When it comes to visual identity, think about what can grab your audience's attention compared to other content in their feed. Design a logo or an animated intro, create something that compliments your company brand and don’t be afraid to make it fun!
Planning is key — line up guest speakers and topics a few episodes in advance to give plenty of time for promotion. If you are interviewing a guest, be sure to utilize their network and encourage them to share your series as well.
Plan out a “run of show” for each episode, and keep the energy up by mixing up the format every 10-15 minutes. Instead of having a 40-min interview, open with 15 minutes of questions, transition to 15 minutes of audience driven Q&A, and then back for another 10-minute closing story or walkthrough. Varying segments will keep audiences tuned in longer, which improves your discoverability by encouraging social network algorithms to display your content more often.
Piquing Your Audience’s Interest
Speaking of algorithms, when you go live, always encourage your viewers to actively engage with your stream. Put out a call for audience questions and display them on the screen, prompt them with open-ended questions or polls to get a feel for what they are thinking, or just directly ask them to like and subscribe!
Every single interaction increases the chance of your stream being displayed on their public feed that’s visible to their entire network. Even if those views don’t come in the 30 minutes you are live, keep in mind that your video will remain on most channels collecting views and being shared long after your stream ends.
Tracking Your Progress
Lastly, when it comes to production, there are plenty of great platforms out there that can help you livestream with remote guests, track analytics and engage in chat across multiple channels at once. There are a handful of great services to help with technical aspects of the process, and we've been able to successfully stream across Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn.
If you are just getting started, N6A offers turnkey packages that support developing your series, designing your livestream brand, and producing your show’s content so you can focus on hosting. For more information and a free consultation on planning your next livestreamed event, reach out to us today!
Posted by Michael Mehlhorn