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F* It, We’ll Do It Live!

Suzy DeLine

Suzy DeLine

April 3

I’m not big into memes, but every time my crowd needs to do something spur of the moment, we invoke this phrase. This is our way of trusting the universe that things will come together.

For a business that has lots of “aha” moments with customers and potential customers, the power of Facebook Live provides exponential impact. Let me explain how.

What Exactly Is Facebook Live? Why Do It?

Lets go to my alma mater, Hubspot. Facebook Live is, in short, the ability to broadcast video from your personal or business Facebook page. This is the follow-up on earlier live video broadcasting technologies like Periscope or Meerkat but with the power of Facebook behind it.

Why do it? Well, as most content marketers are aware of, video is more engaging (for most topics) than static images or text. According to Vimeo, 78% of online audiences are watching video on Facebook Live.

How Is Facebook Live Different from Video on Facebook?

Business News Daily makes it short and sweet. You can upload a video easily to Facebook, just like you can upload a video to YouTube or other social platforms. A nicely-produced video may be the right content. But there are two reasons that Live is different and can be beneficial to try.

  1. Authenticity can be a bit of a buzzword in today’s branding circle. However, there is no denying that when you’re live broadcasting — especially when its from your handheld phone (complete with movement and live chatter) — that you are truly there with your viewers. And your users are there with you. They can comment, share emotions, and share your video in the moment.
  2. Because of this tendency towards being very engaging, these bits of content win the lottery in Facebook’s algorithm. Even though the particulars of the algorithm are secret sauce, you can see engagement insights of the time period during the broadcast as well as afterwards.

What Are Cool Examples of Facebook Live in Action?

So, here are some basic situations you’d go live… thanks to Business News Daily and others.

  • A look under the hood. You started your business because you think it’s interesting and worthwhile. This is a great way for you to share your inside insight to people who might share this interest (or for friends to share with their friends with said interest).
  • You got questions? We got answers. You likely have your top FAQs living on your website in static form. Being able to easily answer these FAQs by broadcasting on Facebook is valuable.
  • Must sell, closing out, liquidation. OK, we’ve all realized that those oriental carpet stores aren’t really going out of business or selling every rug in the store. But your business would be wise to experiment with various promotions. If you’re having one, share why it’s a great deal or why you’re doing it in a salesy but human way.
  • Sneak peeks. Social Media Examiner suggests that sharing a sneak peek at not-yet-available products can raise excitement. (This is especially true if you have a Facebook group — people who have given you their intent/interest.)
  • Promote an event. You preview the venue, the guests, the activities and so forth. This can capture attention much more broadly than just having the event as an inert option on your page.
  • Share your expertise. Small business resource Constant Contact adds that Facebook Live is a great place to put on your expert’s cap and share knowledge. It can be especially useful to your followers in the wake of breaking news in your area.
My client Golden Bear Solar recently did a Facebook Live event. They covered the ins and outs of PG&E legal woes and the new San Jose Clean Power service change.
  • Influencers. We can’t all have Tom Holland (aka Spidey!) in our Facebook Live marketing plan. But it may make sense to include others in your feed if they have expertise to share (and a large following of their own). If there is someone you’d offer a guest blog post to, this would be the same sort of fellow traveller that might be a great guest on a Facebook Live.
  • Out of the ordinary. Now BuzzFeed is never shy… and their willingness to do funky things like the Pringles hackathon was extremely popular. Is there something really cool that you can do that you’d be willing to do on camera that would be unique?

The Do’s & Don’ts of Facebook Live

  • DO: Be prepared. Know how long you’ll be broadcasting. Write your description. Have someone available to read comments (from a PC is best) so you can be at ease. You should look natural and focused to your viewers as you are broadcasting.
  • DO: Make sure you have an excellent connection. If you have spotty wifi or no signal, the video quality will be poor. Boo!
  • DO: Be interactive. Welcome people as they join. Respond to their questions. Ask them questions. Urge them to invite others to the party.
  • DO: Have a call to action. If you’ve gotten people’s attention, make sure you give them something to do. It can be sign up for more events, or go to a special offer landing page.
  • DON’T feel it has to be perfect. You may be self-conscious on video. (Do practice on your personal page a few times!) Don’t compare yourselves with network anchors… be yourself.
  • Our friends at Wipster have the full rundown of do’s and don’ts but I love their number #22 (Don’t hard sell!) and #26 (Don’t hesitate to delete the video if it was a total fail!). 😉

Conclusion

Ask what you have to lose (dignity doesn’t count). Then challenge yourself to think of some ways you can take advantage of Facebook Live, a FREE, effective technology platform.

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