These days, it’s hard to miss the fact that video -- especially livestreaming -- is a big and powerful way to deliver your message. In fact, livestreaming apps are already dominating social media conversation and will continue to do so as more people start using them. Now with new opportunities like Periscope, Blab and Facebook Live Video, it’s tempting to jump onto the video livestreaming bandwagon. But which channel makes the most sense for you? First, let’s look at some of the more popular ones.
In the past few months many of you have probably seen the little icon for the new Facebook Live, which gives you the opportunity to do livestreaming video right onto your Facebook page. To start a livestream, open up the status bar as though you were going to write a new post and click the little head with the circles around it. This will push you into a cue to start your livestreaming. You will then be prompted to name your video feed and choose your audience, meaning you can choose to Livestream to everyone, or just selected followers. Once you do that, you’ll click the button to go Live and voila, you are now broadcasting to your Facebook audience. Also important to note, you can save the video if you decide you want to share it later -- so perhaps add it to your YouTube channel, etc.
Tips for using Facebook Livestreaming:
- Ideal video length: 5 to 20 minutes.
- Use a short, snappy video title. If you need to add a longer description, do it in the comments.
- After the live event be sure to add a little narrative to the post, a call to action and change up the thumbnail (Facebook let’s you pick 1 of 10 images).
- Tags will help folks discover your video so add any that tie into your topic.
- If you’re interviewing people in the video, you can also tag them under “edit video” (one note, you can’t edit the video yet on mobile, just on your desktop).
Periscope is a mobile app that allows you to broadcast to your followers through an active Twitter account (yes, you must have a Twitter account do to this). Unless you save Periscope’s streams, they are temporary and will only “exist” for 24 hours. But you can turn on the “autosave broadcasts,” in the app settings, which will keep them saved to your phone. The livestreaming is shared with your Twitter followers who can then click and watch it live or in replay for up to 24 hours.
Still not convinced? In September of 2015, Periscope had 15 million users.
Tips for using Periscope:
- Since you’re broadcasting on Twitter, I recommend limiting your scopes to 10-15 minutes, and make sure followers know from the onset what they’re getting.
- Click on the Twitter icon before you put the broadcast live, so that the scope is posted to your Twitter feed.
- Keep an eye out for commenters. Folks who watch you live can comment on your video. If you want to reply, just click the “reply” button in their comment.
- Before you launch your scope, spend time coming up with a compelling title. Maybe something “exclusive”: a product launch, a special offer, or a rare, behind the scenes look.
- When Periscope launched, using location and tagging was a bit of a concern because it could pinpoint the exact area you were scoping from. Now it’s more the general area, so you should feel comfortable turning this on during your livestream.
Blab has been called the “Foursquare of video,” because it’s all about the check in. Blab’s mobile app allows you to log on, view other Blabs, or start one of your own (as of this writing there is no Android app). Unlike Facebook Livestreaming and Periscope, Blab doesn’t force you to integrate with any social media site, meaning you can share it on your social sites, but you aren’t forced to run the stream through Facebook or Twitter, etc. You can also schedule your videos up to a month in advance. There’s also a nifty countdown timer on the page, which sort of adds to the excitement of your broadcast. This is especially true if you’re doing a big event, product launch, new training video, etc. I recommend watching a few Blabs before you launch one, just to get an idea of how they’re run, how the interface works, etc.
Tips for using Blab:
- If you want a replay of your Blab available on your Blab.im profile, you’ll need to record it using the record button.
- Blab has a unique feature that allows you to drop in a PowerPoint presentation if you’re doing a class or something else that may require using PPT.
- Make sure you experiment with allowing guests in and locking seats, because this is a useful tool. The “lock seats” feature is especially handy if you’re limiting your audience or just want to do a round-table chat without any other guests popping on.
- Blabs can be private or public, depending on your settings, so be sure to check the settings before you begin.
- Posting your Blab on YouTube can be done with one click. So make sure you connect your Blab to your YouTube account when you set up your profile.
How to Use Livestream Video:
There are many ways that businesses are incorporating video into their marketing, here are a few you might want to consider:
- Product Launch
- Time sensitive events
- Behind the Scenes
- Live Training
- Customer Support
- Add a Boost to Your Live Events
- Promos, Giveaways
Video can be a fantastic way to enhance any business, bring in new customers and better connect you with your current customer and fan base. You may want to play around with a few platforms before you decide on one that you want to use going forward, but remember that you don’t have to limit yourself to just one. I know some folks who use both Blab and Periscope regularly and love it. Decide which platform is the best fit for you and your audience and then have fun!
This story originally appeared on PR Newswire's Small Business PR Toolkit