Live Streaming: It's Not a Phase

September 1, 2016

 

Smartphones have shifted the way we communicate. They have expanded the options for sharing messages - through text, video, voice and image. In the past year, applications that allow live-streaming have become more and more convenient and effective at communicating messages.

 

In previous columns I’ve espoused the benefits of understanding and engaging with technology to reach more specific, tuned-in audiences. Live streaming through mobile apps is absolutely part of this conversation and falls in the category of “Don’t Sleep On It!” In my opinion, it’s effectiveness is due to two things: algorithms and intrigue.

 

Algorithms affect each social media channel differently and cause marketers all over the world varying degrees of headache. Have you noticed that your posts get more views consistently on Wednesdays, then one week it totally changes? It’s not just you. Facebook, Twitter and other business-integrated platforms change their algorithms consistently.

 

One way to combat this endless shifting of the news feeds on which we stand is to engage with the “latest, greatest” option offered by that channel. Lately, this has been the capacity to live-stream through the mobile apps. It’s no secret that Facebook will favor videos published “live” on one’s feed over videos that promote a link to a site outside Facebook. Therefore, your Facebook Live video will rise naturally to the top because Facebook is trying to promote this new feature.

 

This is a temporary situation. Eventually, the new will overtake the old, and there will be something else you need to factor into your posts. This brings me to the second factor of live-stream effectiveness: intrigue. For decades, the phrase, “we’re live!” has introduced breaking news stories as they break. We are trained, as media consumers, to tune in to whatever is live, because it’s a window into another person’s reality. There’s a heightened sense of possibility - anything could happen.

 

In summary, if you are resistant to the new features that are promoted by your businesses’ social media feeds, there’s a chance you are doing more harm than good by not simply trying them out. Dig in and ask questions, and you’re sure to find answers. In fact, try it out live! You’ll be surprised how many answers you get back.

 

Originally published in Valley Business Front magazine

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