We’re Live in 3…2…1

We’re Live in 3…2…1

According to a recent Microsoft study, the human attention span only lasts eight seconds. This increases the pressure to find new and unique ways to keep audiences not only engaged but coming back for more. In an ever-changing social media world, it can seem like a new trend—or a new social media platform—emerges every day. From live stories and advertisements on Snapchat to videos on Facebook Live, it’s difficult to sort through the countless options and determine the most effective method to reach your target audience. Live streaming could be the answer to your social media prayers, as its “raw” format and relaxed feel can help you appear far less-removed from the public and more relatable and trustworthy. The next step, however, is to determine which live-streaming application is the best fit for your brand:

Periscope

THE GOOD

  • Periscope users have created 200 million broadcasts and counting over the past year.
  • Apart from using the app, broadcasters can also upload their videos to Twitter as well as to personal blogs, GoPro and Apple TV.
  • Periscope users can broadcast on their Twitter timeline through the Twitter app.

THE BAD

  • You have to upload the link to your live broadcast on Twitter before sharing the link on other platforms. This can become fairly time-consuming, as it does not let you post to multiple platforms all at once.   
  • Periscope will only keep your broadcast for 24 hours.

Facebook Live

THE GOOD

  • Facebook Live has the potential to reach a very large audience. A recent viral Facebook Live video stars a Texas mother wearing a Chewbacca mask, which reached 135 million viewers. Kohl’s capitalized on the video’s popularity, quickly responding to the video and using it as a tool to engage with consumers.
  • Facebook is still the dominant social media platform, so this method of live streaming could be the best way to connect with both older and newer generations who use Facebook.
  • Videos don’t expire after 24 hours.

THE BAD

  • Facebook defines a view as being three seconds or more. This makes it difficult to determine your audience’s overall interest in the material.

Blab

THE GOOD

  • This application presents a unique function that differs from other forms of live streaming, where two to four separate users are involved in the same video.
  • Blab focuses on using live streaming as a means of broadcasting conversations, interviews and podcasts.
  • Mashable equated Blab to Periscope and Meerkat and emphasized that its greatest use is for discussing important topics.
  • You can easily post the link to Twitter.

THE BAD

  • Viewers can enter into the video chat, so you may not have as much control over the content or discussion as with other applications.

YouNow

THE GOOD

  • YouNow allows viewers to watch broadcasts from their desktop or mobile phone.
  • The application is similar to Twitter in that it contains a trending topics section, where you can click on the hashtag and view broadcasts addressing the topic.
  • Huffington Post worked with YouNow in August 2015 to make a video series targeted to a younger audience. 

THE BAD

  • YouNow’s focus on younger audiences may limit your engagement with older generations.

While the idea of presenting “unscripted” live stream material may be tempting, always have a strategy for what message you want to convey before getting behind the camera—or iPhone. Live streaming opens the doors to creativity and with it the unique opportunity to add more skills to your social media arsenal. And with a wide variety of applications to choose from, you are bound to find the right fit for your engagement needs.

- Melody Goforth

Posted By Intern