HdK’s Guide to Livestreaming

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Livestreams are becoming increasingly popular on social media, with platforms such as Instagram, Facebook and YouTube leading the way with easy-to-create and -access live video. Livestreaming on social media has proven to be a great way to help boost engagement on platforms, with many of the social media channels rewarding users for sharing this type of content. A recent study by New York Magazine and Livestream.com found that 82% of audiences would rather watch a livestream than see a social media post. From their apparent success with engaging and reaching audiences, livestreaming is shaping up to be an incredibly valuable tool for companies who want to stay up to speed on the best ways to connect with audiences.

Content ideas for going live

 

Deciding on what your live content should include will depend on your business offering, but whatever your service, it’s a brilliant opportunity to get creative with your online communications. The possibilities for what you can do in a live session are almost endless. Ideas could include:

  • How-to videos and tutorials
  • Meet the team
  • Free demos or taster sessions for your service
  • Workouts
  • Dance classes
  • Live Q&A sessions
  • Conversations with industry figures
  • Behind the scenes insights
  • A day in the life of…

Preparing to go live

 

To ensure a high level of quality and optimal audience interaction, there are four key steps you can take when preparing to go live.

First of all, planning is essential. Make sure you have planned out the content for each live session, so that it can be professionally delivered. By planning your content, it will mean that each live session has a clear structure that audiences can follow and understand. In addition, it can be useful to create a guide outlining your company’s tone of voice and brand, so that any person hosting a live session continues to reflect your organisation’s values and messaging.

Secondly, practice. Build out time to run through your live sessions and practice. Record yourself and show your colleagues for feedback on content, lighting and sound. You can also create a private test account (with no followers!), so that you can practice using the apps and starting live sessions without fear of people tuning in. By running through your content and practicing hosting a live session, it will ensure that the presenter feels confident on how to use the platform and will be more relaxed and natural as a result.

Thirdly, prepare to go live. This refers to the steps you should take just before you start your live session on the app. Key aspects you should cover are making sure your device is charged, having clear space and lighting, having a reliable internet source and having notes so that you can keep on track of your live session. By checking these elements are in place, it will enable your live session to run smoothly and lower the risk of any technical issues.

Finally, the last step is to perform. Once you are live, the main aspect you need to focus on is engagement. Ultimately, live sessions are a great way to encourage real-time interaction with your followers, helping to build and solidify customer or audience relationships. In order to do this, make sure you keep an eye out for comments and respond to your audiences. Things you can do to help engage with your audience during a live session are welcoming viewers into the live session and thanking them for joining, doing shout-outs and responding to any comments or questions you may receive. By doing this, you are ensuring that your live session has a two-way dialogue, so your audiences are involved and included in the content.

Although live sessions can be daunting, the numbers show they are worth the time and effort to do it effectively. Following our basic steps can help break down the task of hosting a live session. If you’d like to discuss your current Instagram strategy or social media live streaming, drop us a line! We’d love to hear from you.

Freya Ruane - Digital Marketing Coordinator