Nearly every social media platform out there has an option for live streaming now and tons of people use it – celebrities, influencers, businesses, and even your friends. The question is, should you go live? How does going live benefit you on social media? How do you do it right?
Going Live on Facebook
Facebook introduced live video streaming in April 2016 for all of its users. The purpose of Facebook Live is relatively simple – to broadcast a real-time video straight from a users’ smartphone, tablet, or computer with the touch of a button.
“Facebook live is a fantastic tool to increase awareness of your business or personal brand. Apart from the fact that your followers will get notified when you go live, you can also count on better ranking on the news feed.” – Many Cam
Going Live on Instagram
Instagram offers an option to go live through something called Instagram Live. Instagram Live allows the recorder to share real-time video with their followers and develop a dialogue with them (if you choose to do so, of course). Live recordings can be created to be enjoyed only in the moment and disappear as soon as you’ve gone off the air, or you can choose to save them. The choice is up to you!
“Instagram Live breaks down the barrier between you and your audience. It allows you to have a real conversation and interact in real-time. It creates a face-to-face experience that feels personal and genuine. Genuine means trustworthy, and trustworthy is a great thing.” – Telescope
The Benefits of Going Live
There are tons of benefits that’ll surely make you want to go live on social media. Some of the biggest ones are:
- Real-time Connection: Live recordings allow your audience to feel more connected to you. Knowing that they’re watching you in real-time makes it easier for your audience to feel connected with you. Not to mention the opportunity to comment and reach live to videos.
- More Engagement: By scheduling live events or just by recording spur-of-the-moment videos, you can increase engagement with your audience. Seeing you respond to people in video rather than in comments or posts creates a more immediate need to engage.
- It’s Interactive: With commenting turned on, you can see what your audience is saying during the video in comments on your screen. This allows you to actively respond and converse with your followers.
- Increased Authenticity: Live videos are great for boosting your brand’s authenticity and trust. They allow your customers to see what you are doing in the moment, raw and unfiltered.
Tips for Going Live
If you want to go live, here are some tips that will be useful to you!
- Have a strong connection: By this, we mean a strong Internet connection! Without a strong and consistent Internet connection, live videos can turn into laggy nightmares that are painful to even watch!
- Consider noise levels: Make sure you are in a quiet place before you go live. This will not always be possible for all recordings, but do your best to limit the number of distractions and background noise so that your followers can hear you.
- Have good lighting: Yes, the whole point of going live is that you’re raw and unfiltered, but that doesn’t mean you have to have bad lighting, too! Try to record in bright spaces with a stable light source.
- Be prepared: Although much of the beauty of live videos is their unpredictability, you should still map out what you want to say and the message you want to get across to your audience.
- Repeat: People can join your live video at any time, so don’t think that they will know what you said at the beginning of the video. It’s okay to repeat points throughout the video, but try to address this by acknowledging why you are reiterating something, such as saying, “For those of you who just tuned in…”
Warnings for Going Live
Even with all the fun and benefits of going live, there are still some things that you should be aware of before you do so. Some things you should take note of are:
- It’s live: Anything can be said, especially in a live interview. Be prepared for mishaps. There’s no editing and deleting in a live video.
- There are no breaks: There’s no stopping to figure out what to say next in a live video. Help combat this by creating an outline before you begin.
- Anything can be said in the comments: The comments are a good thing, but they can also be negative. You need to be okay with this and prepared for any spam or inappropriate comments that might come up. What are the best ways to deals with inappropriate comments?
- Kick viewers out of your Livestream.
- Block inappropriate users.
- Turn of commenting as a last resort.
Going live can be super fun for you. It provides something new and refreshing to your followers. Anyone that’s a fan of you or your business would love to see you as authentically as possible, so, if you’re prepared and comfortable doing it, go live!
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This blog post was originally published in April 2018 and has been edited to improve accuracy and readability.