Mark Zuckerberg says, “Live is like having a TV camera in your pocket. Anyone with a phone now has the power to broadcast to anyone in the world.” Facebook Live is one of Facebook’s greatest frontiers and since its launch in 2016, it has not only matured wonderfully, it also has proven to be a valuable tool for companies and brands.
Here’s all you need to know about Facebook Live
Do we need to add how Facebook has taken the social media sweep by storm? Their latest addition Facebook Live Video is pretty much the next big thing in social media marketing. Take a look at these stats and you’ll know exactly why:
- According to Google Trends, search popularity for the “Facebook live stream” has risen over 330% since its inception.
- One in five Facebook videos is now a live broadcast.
- Internet video traffic will be over 80% of all consumer internet traffic by 2020.
- People comment 10 times more on Facebook Live videos than on regular videos.
So, now you know how big Live videos are for Facebook, with the company even recently tweaking its algorithm to show live video broadcasts higher up in people’s news feeds.
Let’s get started with how to use Facebook Live Video?
Live broadcasts can be identified by the red icon in the top left-hand corner of the video. The word “Live” will be written next to the icon, along with the number of current viewers.
How to start a Facebook Live broadcast:
- Tap on Update Status on your Facebook news feed
- Select the Live Video icon
- Give Facebook access to your camera and microphone when prompted.
- Write a description
- Choose the audience you’d like to share with
- Go live
During the broadcast, you’ll see the number of live viewers, the names of any friends who are tuning in, and a real-time stream of comments.
Once you’ve ended your broadcast, the post will save to your Timeline like any video.
Live broadcasts can be up to 90 minutes long.
Let’s now dig into the aspects of using Facebook Live Video:
- Always plan ahead!
Before you begin streaming, ensure that you’ve taken some time to think about what your broadcast’s about, what you want to say (or do) in it, and why it makes sense as a Live stream as opposed to some other format of content.
Broadcasting live, by its very nature, means you can’t plan precisely what’s going to happen. But that doesn’t mean you should just wing it. Like any type of content online, Facebook Live broadcasts should have a purpose.
- Let people know when you’re going live
You wouldn’t hold a party and not invite anyone, would you? Your Facebook Live broadcast is like any other event: if you want anyone to show up, you’ve got to let them know it’s happening.
Obviously you’ll want to post about your upcoming broadcast on Facebook, where you can encourage people to subscribe to your Live videos. But you can also promote your stream on your other social channels. Just make sure you’re clear about where and when people can tune in!
The Facebook Live API makes this even easier by giving publishers the option to schedule broadcasts and share a link to their stream ahead of time.
- Ensure your internet connection is good
It’s important to make sure you have a strong signal before you begin broadcasting. While WiFi is ideal, if it’s unavailable, a 4G connection works well.
For best results, check your internet speed prior to beginning your broadcast using the Speedtest app, available in the App Store and Google Play.
- Having a compelling description before going live is important to set the plot
Your description tells people what your video is about. A good one captures the audience’s attention and a bad one—or worse, none at all—makes it all the more likely they’ll keep on scrolling.
Use your description to tell a story. Give context about what your broadcast is about and be sure to make it clear why people would want to watch.
- Update your location
Add your location to your Live video so it shows up on the Facebook Live Map and gives you a greater chance of having it discovered by new viewers.
- Call to Action: Ask viewers to follow you
Getting audience members to subscribe to your Live videos is the simplest way to ensure future viewers, because subscribers receive notifications every time you go Live. While broadcasting, take a second to let viewers know about the feature and tell them how they can subscribe to your videos.
- Respond to comments
As with any kind of social content, engagement is key on Facebook Live video. Facebook recommends saying hello to commenters by name, then responding to their comments.
- Take your time
The longer you continue your broadcast, the more time people have to discover your stream, watch it, and invite their friends to join in.
Facebook recommends going Live for at least 10 minutes. The maximum time limit for a broadcast is 90 minutes, so beyond that, the length is up to you.
- Creativity has always been the key
The more often you go Live, the more likely you are to stay top-of-mind. Try out different types of broadcasts to see what resonates with your audience. And don’t be afraid to get creative with your stream.
We hope this has been a helpful guide. We’ll keep you posted with any new developments and tips for connecting with your audience in more cool ways.