In the quest to make communication even more immediate and personalized, Facebook’s live video option – Facebook Live – has taken off. On the surface, this feature allows anyone to publish live streaming videos directly to their account. But on a deeper level, Facebook Live provides an unprecedented opportunity to be more transparent and direct with your audience, build stronger connections, and establish yourself as an expert in your niche. So what are some basic rules for using this social media tool effectively? And what kinds of unique content can you provide for viewers?
Give Advanced Notice
First, you should give ample warning before broadcasting something important to your audience. Not promoting a Facebook Live broadcast is akin to not promoting the release of a new product - few people will be aware of your offering and even fewer will engage. Be sure to notify not only your Facebook followers of an upcoming broadcast, but followers on other platforms as well – and make sure they’re following your page, so they get a notification when you go live. This marks a perfect opportunity to increase Facebook follows among those who are already familiar with your brand.
Consider Tutorials and How-Tos
Once a Facebook Live video is captured, it's available in your feed permanently. So an informative video can go a long way, even if some of your followers miss the actual broadcast.
Facebook allows users to provide feedback during a broadcast, so you'll want to decide in advance whether or not you will address individual responses during your live stream. For example, during a how-to video, you may want to encourage questions and select a few to answer. If the idea of conversing during a broadcast seems distracting, enlist someone else for help or simply focus on your broadcast. If you’re discussing products, you could include your affiliate links in the comments of your video. Just keep in mind that with the right topic and viewer-base, Facebook Live can also serve as a dynamic platform for group conversation and community building.
Provide Event Access
Providing inside access to an event is particularly powerful if your audience demographics span far beyond your own city. Those who live halfway across the world no longer need to be left out of local events - let them watch a live stream. This ability to connect with all of your followers, even those you'll never meet in person, creates a stronger sense of community. If you have a prominent speaker scheduled, or even an interesting panel discussion, don't assume your long-distance followers wouldn't want to listen in.
Mind the Details
One potential limitation to using Facebook Live effectively is a weak internet connection or IP issues. If you know that your connection has a tendency to conk out randomly, check into acquiring a more reliable router (or changing locations) before doing any broadcasts. Be sure that your privacy settings are set to your desired preference prior to a broadcast.
So far, support of Facebook Live among bloggers, brands, artists, and business owners has been strong. It’s a way for you to offer something extra to your audience, so they recognize you as an expert and keep visiting your pages regularly. With a fresh medium to communicate with large groups of people, you can creatively utilize this new platform in any way you choose.
Have you experimented with Facebook Live? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!