Facebook Live: your digital marketing advantage
Facebook is arguably one of the most popular social media platforms on the web. Recent stats have shown that Facebook has over 1.5 billion active users each month. As such Facebook has become an excellent tool for your business and one the most popular marketing tools available. It is an ideal place to provide your clients and followers with a variety of information; from product lines, tips and hints, specials or a behind-the-scenes look at how the business operates. In our experience we have found that Facebook users really enjoy and respond to this behind-the-scenes insight into how businesses run and the staff that run it.
Facebook is currently putting a lot of emphasis on video content, with over 8 billion video views world wide on Facebook every day. This emphasis and engagement with video opens up huge advertising and marketing potential for your business. Even better, Facebook’s emphasis on video content means that it will be seen by more viewers, without having to pay for the viewer reach that would typically be needed with an image or text only based post.
What is Facebook Live?
A new feature Facebook has recently introduced is live video. Facebook Live is a real-time video post that appears directly on your Facebook page as it happens. It is public and allows your followers, and the general public, to view the content as it unfolds.
Why use Facebook Live?
Facebook Live offers a chance to interact directly with followers. It is a great way to communicate about your brand and products with fans and likers. It offers a chance to share information or stories and build stronger relationships with those interested in your product.
So, Facebook Live provides an opportunity for a larger scope of followers to see your content and interact with you as it unfolds. Combine this with the behind-the-scenes nature of Facebook Live and it is bound to be a winner for both your business and your followers.
When should your brand use Facebook Live?
Facebook Live can be used in a variety of instances. If you feel confident in the topic/location and believe it is something people will be interested in – its the perfect time to use Facebook Live. The options are endless for what you can show and discuss live. If you are stuck for ideas of where to start, here is a list of possible suggestions:
- Arrival of stock
- Loading and/or delivery of a new supply of stock
- Demonstration of your work e.g painting process in action
- Show how to dress a bed for an open house
- Repair or replace product parts
- During a field or demo day, part of a ride-and-drive day
- Questions and answers with a staff member
- Describing various or specific features of a product
- Product reviews or product comparisons
- Introduce new staff
- Visiting a clients farm. Talk about the crops
- Sitting in a product – show the view and talk about the features
- A walk through of the store / show room / yard
- Launching a new product
- Showing how to make your favourite meal
- A how-to layering your most popular scarf / necklace / top to achieve the desired look
You’re live, now what?
Give it some time. It will often take a little while for people to start viewing the live stream. Be aware that the number of viewers will fluctuate during the video.
Be yourself. Viewers are tuning in to get a ‘behind-the-scenes’ of you and your business. They want to see the real you. In doing so, you will build customer familiarity and trust.
Introduce yourself more than once. When you first start streaming it is likely no one will be watching – but introduce yourself. As more viewers begin watching introduce yourself again – eg. ‘Hello to the 367 viewers watching at the moment. I’m (name) from (business) and today we are talking about…’
Keep the video visually appealing to entice people to want to watch.
Be informative and/or entertaining. Give your viewers a reason to continue watching once they’re engaged.
Be spontaneous. It’s live. Banter. Joke. If you fumble, don’t worry, keep going. Don’t read from a prompter or rehearse too much. People are tuning in for the live nature of the video. Live isn’t always perfect, and that’s okay.
Encourage your viewers to like or comment on the post – it helps with ranking and video reach in news feeds.
Engage with commenters. Address their statements or questions. Acknowledge them by name – it will make the commenter feel like they are part of the discussion. You do not have to acknowledge or respond verbally to every question: just sporadically choose those relevant to your content. This will also help prompt your discussion topics when you feel like you don’t know what to talk about next.
Be aware of the video length. It is suggested to broadcast your video for at least 5-10 minutes. By doing so it will encourage likes, comments, shares and a higher number of views to come in while you are live.
Wrap it up before you end the video. Encourage people to keep a look out for future Facebook Live videos. Say goodbye.
Facebook live image © European Union 2016 – European Parliament
It’s live! Which means that a Facebook Live video does not have to be perfect. It’s about creating a sense of who you are, and in turn who your business is. So, have fun. Enjoy yourself, but try and keep your language clean – you never know who could be watching.
If you feel nervous about doing your first live video – practice first on your personal account. There is an option to do a live video that ‘Only Me’ can see. Try it out. Learn how it all works so you feel comfortable and prepared when you go to do your first business live video.
Let’s end on an interesting Facebook live fact
Up to 80% of people who view a Facebook Live video will watch it after the live stream. This could be later that night, the next day, the following week. Facebook Live videos stay on your Facebook page and provide people a chance to re-watch them or for others to watch who couldn’t at the time.