If a business isn’t yet live-streaming, it needs to start. Especially if it’s serious about earning the trust of consumers.
From movie stars to bloggers, people are live-streaming. They’re showing off their lives behind the scenes and getting consumers to pay attention to their brands, whether those consumers are seeking the information or passively absorbing it while browsing social media. Facebook Live is taking off, and numbers from other platforms support this meteoric rise. Periscope reported its users were watching 110 years’ worth of video on the platform daily as of June 2016. It’s clearly time for businesses to start harnessing the power of live-streaming to reach bigger audiences.
Live-streaming bucks tradition because it doesn’t feel like traditional targeted video. It can happen spontaneously but an audience can still receive content without actually being present to witness it, which is only one reason why live-streaming is carving out and settling into its own space in the content marketing sphere.
Live-streaming is authentic. There are no polished anchors, no flattering background lights and no guarantees of what might happen, and this freshness is built into the activity. This is exciting for viewers and humanizes live-streamers — plus, raw video can humanize a product just as well.
Ease of use is another reason why live-streaming has earned its place. Anyone with a smartphone or laptop and a few social media accounts can do it. The technology gets more efficient with every software update, and a marketer simply has to point a camera at the target. It involves as much or as little preparation as a marketer wants, but it’s important to deliver the right message, even if the process seems casual.
Yet another reason why it doesn’t look like live-streaming is about to jump the shark is because it’s so interactive. Marketers can take customers on a tour of the office, unveil new products or answer real-time questions with apps like Periscope to bring a face to the brand and connect with consumers on a personal level. If consumers feel like they’re right there along with the company, then it’s building rapport and gaining their trust — Periscope is available in 25 languages, so there’s no shortage of consumers to target.
Speaking of Periscope, here are some convincing facts showing that the people want live-streaming. The app debuted on March 26, 2015, and just five months later it had over 10 million users who were watching over 40 years’ worth of video a day. In its first year, the app hosted over 200 million broadcasts. Only a small number — between 3 and 5 percent — of those users are there to live-stream, however; the rest use the app to watch content. It’s no wonder platforms like Facebook entered the game.