How can brands use Facebook live?

Last year we saw the likes of Periscope and Snapchat lead the way in live streaming. It was only a matter of time before Facebook thought 'hold on, live streaming, why aren't we doing this?' (well I'm not saying they said this exactly, but you get the gist).

On the heels of Periscope, Facebook launched its own live streaming app, Facebook Live. Designed in almost the same way as Periscope, the app is easy to use and instantaneously reaches your desired audience through the power of real time.

But what does this mean for marketers? And how can brands leverage this power of live streaming?

Twitter's Periscope user base grew to 10 million users within its first 4 months, however with a potential user base and audience of over 1.5 billion casts, Facebook Live promises to be even more popular.

So why use Facebook Live?

1. All about the real time

For companies, the possibilities of live streaming are endless and have opened up a whole new world of opportunities for brands and businesses. It allows companies to connect and interact with their audience in real time. It's a great way for companies to engage and break down the barriers of traditional marketing.

2. Convenience

The fact that the app is built right into Facebook is super handy for us busy marketers. No need for searching for an app, its right there for you. Simply go to the homepage, click on the 'status' button and chose live video - done. Just like magic, you can start broadcasting your message.

3. Total transparency

There is nothing more authentic and transparent than a genuine live video. This type of marketing allows people to interact with real people and not just the brand.

4. Quick and easy

Today's attention span is getting shorter and shorter. Live video allows your audience to interact with your brand without investing too much time and energy. Condensed information such as live video allows consumers to consume what they need and when they want.

As you can see the benefits are endless, but how can marketers use Facebook Live?

Behind the scenes, take one.

Generally, people are curious. We all love a good nose around and providing your customer with a behind the scenes look on how your team works or how your product is created is a great way to invite people into your world. Share the secrets of your success.

Share it live

Anytime you or anyone in your company is at a live event or flagship presentation - whatever it may be, share it live. It's a great way to engage with your audience while you're filming, answering any questions they may have, allowing the customer be there with you. It doesn't even have to be the full event; even sharing just a snippet to create curiosity encourages people to engage.

Get interviewing

Brands are all about the people, so what better way to get your audience to listen than to interview the people who make up your brand. Employees, clients, people within your niche, whoever it may be, get interviewing.

Share advice, tips, news and opinion

The more you offer advice and opinion, the more your brand will be truly trusted and respected. A no brainer really, but what can you advice do for others? How can you help them? This is your time to shine, learn to stand out as the expert.

Don't be afraid to take questions

Social media provides the perfect platform for people to voice their opinions and ask questions. Answering questions efficiently and as prompt as possible will encourage your audience's loyalty and commitment.

Put a face to a name

There is no better way to drive engagement than putting a human face to your brand. Authenticity is key. With live streaming, it is incredibly easy to put the spotlight on your employees; a great way to do this is a Q&A question with your senior staff.

Be funny

Not everything on social media has to be scripted, light-hearted banter and a good joke will always win people over. Don't be all about the sales.

And it doesn't end there, have you heard of Facebook 360? Another interactive feature which allows viewers to pan and rotate a 360 video's perspective to watch it from different angles. Check it out.

I'm not saying it's going to be easy for brands to use the new app efficiently the minute they start using it, but these top tips will help you cut through the noise and stand out from the crowd when using this exciting, new app.

If you would like to learn more about how Facebook, as well as other social media networks, can improve your brand awareness and social presence, check out the IDM Professional Certificate in Social Media.

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