For introverts, this is probably the news you’ve been dreading, but Facebook Live can no longer be ignored. This live video feature offers exciting opportunities for B2B or B2C businesses that want to reach more customers online. How does it work and especially how to succeed on Facebook Live to set up an effective marketing strategy?
What is Facebook Live?
Facebook Live is a feature on Facebook that allows you to broadcast live video to your page and interact with your followers in real time. Launched in 2016, it aimed at the time to compete with Periscope, YouTube as well as other platforms where users can go to watch live videos.
Since its debut in 2016, live video has exploded in popularity. 82% of people would prefer live video to reading a social message. It helps to forge a more authentic and valuable connection with the audience. And it’s no secret that live streaming has grown strongly. The total number of hours watched on the main streaming platforms has indeed increased by 99% between 2019 and 2020. On Facebook in particular, one in five videos on Facebook is live. (Source: Hubspot)
Since then, the social network has made great strides in developing its marketing strategy with Facebook, constantly rolling out new features to help you spread your message even further.
It’s incredibly easy! You can stream the videos from a mobile device or a computer (on a computer you will need to verify your business page). In the cases:
- Click the Live/Go Live icon (depending on the device you are using)
- Give your content a compelling title. You are ready to go and broadcast live to your subscribers.
During the live, you will be able to see how many people are watching the video, reading comments as they are posted, and seeing reaction icons.
Once you’re done, the video is saved to your timeline and available to watch like any other video. It has ongoing value both in the Facebook environment and on other social media: those who missed the live stream can catch up later and you can tweet it or include it in your blog to increase its visibility .
Going live doesn’t require any special equipment, expensive microphones or cameras, or even a professional-looking studio. It is accessible to almost anyone with a Facebook account and a smartphone. There are, of course, several factors you’ll need to consider when it comes to using Facebook Live for your business.
Plan your Facebook Live
As with any other event, you need to plan an editorial calendar and know in advance what you are going to talk about. To do this, ask yourself the right questions:
- What is the purpose of this event?
- What’s your call to action after the video?
You will need to write a basic script, like creating a call frame, to know exactly what you are going to say.
Create an editorial calendar
Facebook Live videos certainly require less planning and editing than YouTube videos, but that doesn’t mean you should completely neglect the planning aspect. If possible, have a regular schedule so your followers know when to expect a video. Also advertise in advance to drive engagement on Facebook. By talking live video days before it airs, it gives you an opportunity to generate interest rather than just going live and hoping people show up.
How can you get the word out about your live stream?
- Create a Facebook event for the stream;
- Advertise on all social networks (not just on Facebook!);
- Use a Messenger bot;
- Engage users with polls and other interactive features.
Position your brand
The key to a successful Facebook Live video is being able to break down your brand succinctly. Your video strategy should include weekly livestreams on your Facebook page to boost your brand positioning and the know, like, and trust factor with your audience.
Even when you’re not selling something, when done this way, live video helps emphasize your personality in your personal brand.
That means you need to be true to your industry, your audience, and your company’s brand identity if you want to be successful on Facebook Live. Authenticity is one of the keys to getting there. Several studies agree that up to 80% of people say that authenticity is a key factor when deciding to follow a brand. People will watch the Facebook Live stream because they like your brand’s view of the world. Do not deviate from this objective at the risk of losing viewers.
Interact with fans and mention them by name
The number of comments on your video is another way Facebook gives it a higher relevance score, making it more likely to show up on followers’ News Feed. So encourage your viewers to comment on the video and interact with the people who comment by answering their questions and calling them by name. Not only will this get more people to comment, but it’s also a fun way to include your viewers in the live experience. It is also a good trick to make them stay longer.
Encourage them to like and share the video
Remember that Facebook’s algorithm ranks a post based on the number of people who like and share it. The more people who like and share your live video on Facebook, the more it will appear in followers’ news feeds.
But when watching a video, they can get quite distracted and forget to like and share that type of content over text or a photo. In this case, in addition to answering their questions, calling out to them by name, encourage them to like and share the video.
When it comes to the content of the live video itself, stick to a topic and think about structuring it well. Simple and to-the-point content will help hold your audience’s attention throughout the video.
And don’t think you have to sit in front of the camera all the time. A few small interruptions like sharing your screen or including slides in your live video can be a great way to help your audience watch your live longer.
Content marketing therefore does not only focus on blog articles, or even simple publications on social networks. Video, especially live video on Facebook Live, is also considered effective digital marketing content. Videos on Facebook Live can drive significant engagement and increase awareness for your business.