In the fast paced and hi-tech world that we live and work in every day, there seems to be an infinite amount of apps and ideas to push us more into the digital world. There are approximately 2 billion smart phone users in the world and most smart phone users interact with their phones regularly throughout the day. What if there was a way to engage those people at a minimal cost? Fortunately, there is Facebook LIVE and I am here to help you understand the best practices of leveraging Facebook LIVE as part of your audience engagement strategy. Whether you are promoting a contest, making an announcement, producing a webinar, or streaming a live conference, Facebook LIVE has a wide range of capabilities to utilize.
Contests and Announcements
Organizations from many industries are already using Facebook LIVE for free engagement strategy including, news outlets, blogging companies, sports teams, churches, and e-commerce based companies. Most of these strategies consist of contests, promotions, or announcements. Yahoo Sports uses Facebook LIVE to engagement with their Fantasy Football app users. Each week, Yahoo has one of their fantasy football analysts stream live from Facebook to give up to date advice on roster moves. Many local news outlets will have a stream set up on site for their evening reports. This has become more prominent with the upcoming election.
These are very effective examples but when it comes to tying this into your engagement strategy there are a few best practices to stick to. First off, you need to do your prep work for these events. Even though it is as simple as picking up your phone or tablet and hitting record, you need to do your due diligence and understand the purpose of the event. If I am marketing director for a software company and I want to do something to engage my Facebook audience with our new update, I will do an exclusive Facebook LIVE announcement the ties to a press release or a blog article. The beautiful part of Facebook LIVE is that you can communicate with the audience directly and see the interaction in real time.
One thing that has been trending up for small businesses and freelance professionals is hosting webinars through Facebook LIVE. I have seen motivational speakers, personal trainers, and freelance consultants use this method. For those that don’t have a large budget for attending conferences and hosting live events, Facebook LIVE gives them an opportunity to do some serious audience engagement and promote their business. A good friend of mine uses Facebook live to promote his gym and will live stream webinars on natural movement exercises and nutrition. He will answer questions during the live stream and engage with his clients and fans in real time.
Conferences and Live Events
For larger corporations, it is also a great way to engage with your audience and promote your live events and conferences. The major news networks will simulcast large events through Facebook LIVE as well. For example, I am hosting a large medical conference and want to boost ticket sales for my upcoming event. I would use Facebook LIVE as a way to introduce myself, the event, and the big event day happenings to build interest and boost ticket sales. Facebook LIVE can be used to engage with users during the events as well.
What you need to start broadcasting on Facebook Live
Setting up your stream could not be simpler. All you need is the following to get started;
- Personal or Business Facebook Page
- A smart phone, laptop, or another recording device with access to the Facebook app, the Facebook Pages Manager app (App Store| Google Play), or a live encoder
- A strong internet connection
The simplicity of this app is what makes it such a great marketing tool. Being able to setup and shoot a LIVE video and broadcast to a group of already engaged fans is why I love Facebook LIVE. Now that you are ready to go live, here is what you need for the best quality production;
A Quality Camera
Fortunately, in 2016, if you have a smart phone you have a hi-res camera in your pocket already and really all you need is a recording device that can access the Facebook app. However, If you are producing an event that will have a multi-camera set-up, Facebook allows for live streaming from any device with live video encoding software. If you are using your own camera equipment make sure to have a tripod to stead your camera to avoid a shaky picture.
Use a shotgun microphone that can attach to the camera or a lavaliere microphone. Using an external mic, like the shotgun or lavaliere will give you the best possible audio quality.
First off, be aware of your surroundings. If you think it’s too loud, it’s probably too loud. If you think there is not enough light, there’s definitely not enough light. Take the time to prep the location and plan out what you want the setting to look like.
Now that you have to tools to plan and execute your Facebook LIVE strategy, the next step is in your hands. Get with your team, develop a plan and go LIVE. If you are interested in learning more about social media marketing and audience engagement strategy, the experts at Revenue River Marketing are stand by to help you.