Facebook, the biggest social networking site in the world has a powerful function called Facebook Live and it allows any user to broadcast an event on the spot. And you can do this via your personal Facebook profile, through groups, or even with your Facebook page.
- Why Using Facebook Live
- How to Go Live on Facebook
- The Features You Need to Know
- 1. Receiving Notifications
- 2. Sending Invitations
- 3. Facebook Live Map
- 4. Engage with Live Reactions
- 5. Using a Mask
- 6. The Facebook Live API
- 7. Facebook Live Metrics
- Tips for an Effective Facebook Live Streaming
This Live feature was first announced in 2015 and it was only available for celebrities back then. Today, Facebook has made this feature available to any user with an active profile or page.
This means that anyone, regardless of whether you are an internet marketer who is trying to profit from your audience, or if you are running a news company and you wanted to share something with your audience, or if you want to engage with your friends and fans, you can start a live video with Facebook.
Why Using Facebook Live
Using Facebook Live is easy, but before you learn how you can go live, you must understand why you want to do it. Videos have slowly become the main content as technology is evolving at a rapid rate and anyone can record a video using their phones.
According to a study done by Cisco, a tech company, the study shows that video streaming or video content will grow to more than 80% of all consumer internet traffic by 2020. There is also a statistic from eMarketer showed that adults in the United States were watching an average of one hour and sixteen minutes of videos every single day in 2015.
In a nutshell, if you want to build your online presence, video content is the next big thing you need to understand and learn to do.
And below are the three core benefits you can receive by doing Facebook Live video streaming.
1. Drive Higher Engagement
Do you know that people tend to comment, like and share more often on Facebook Live videos than on the ordinary videos share on Facebook? When your audience sees that you are doing a Live video streaming, there is a higher chance that they will stop, watch and engage with you.
2. Facebook Live is Fast
Yes, Facebook Live streaming has the lowest latency and it is considered one of the fastest ways of communication. According to media streaming service provider, Wowza discovered that Facebook Live streaming is faster than satellite and cable for some viewers.
3. Higher Organic Reach
When it comes to live video streaming, Facebook considers the video as more valuable than the ordinary shared video. This is important because Facebook’s algorithm prioritizes Live and native video more. To put it in a simple term, Live video tends to appear higher in News Feed when they are live. This will greatly increase the organic reach of your audience.
However, this privilege only available when you are doing the live video. After the live broadcast, the video can still be discovered from your News Feed, but Facebook will treat it like any other ordinary video with less importance.
Another important function to note when doing Facebook Live broadcast is that some of your audience may receive a notification about it. This allows your live videos to gain a head-start with higher viewers.
How to Go Live on Facebook
Using the Facebook Live feature is easy. As long as you own an account on Facebook, you can do it. You can choose to broadcast the live video from your profile page or from your fan page. Just look for the word “Go Live” and the icon and then click it on it will do.
1. Tap on your status bar
2. Choose the “Go Live” feature
3. Write a description
4. Choose the audience you want to share with
5. You can also tag someone, your location, or insert any emoji. This is optional
6. Hit the big red “Record” button to go live
You can see the engagements from your audience while you are live. Facebook will show you the number of live viewers, your friends who have joined, and also the real-time comments during the broadcast.
Please take note that as of this writing, the maximum length for Facebook Live broadcast is 90 minutes.
The Features You Need to Know
Facebook Live is a powerful tool that allows everyone to leverage on its potential to reach a higher audience.
Here are some of the outstanding features that you can leverage on while doing the live streaming.
1. Receiving Notifications
Facebook treats its live video broadcasting as a special video content. And because of this, Facebook will notify those who frequently engage with or have recently interacted with you or your page.
By default, the notification is set to “on”, and you can change this option in your setting. Besides that, if someone loves your live video, they can choose to subscribe to be notified every time you go live.
2. Sending Invitations
Whenever someone is watching a live broadcast on Facebook, they can send an invitation to other people and notify them to watch together. This feature is only available within the Live video. It can be a powerful feature because your audience can notify each other to join the broadcast, as a result, this may increase the views of your live video.
3. Facebook Live Map
There is a feature from Facebook called the Live Map, which is available on desktop as of now. Facebook users from over 60 countries will have the ability to search for live broadcast using this Live Map feature. The map will display all the live broadcast that is currently happening across the world.
The Live Map will show the live event as a blue dot with larger dot means a more popular broadcast. And when you hover your cursor the dot, Facebook will show you a preview of the live stream and also show you how many people are currently watching it, plus a timer showing how long the streaming has been going.
4. Engage with Live Reactions
It is common that every Facebook user can react to any post using the six emoji reactions. The only difference when doing a live streaming is that the reaction will be shown in real-time. You can see people reacting to your live video on the spot.
5. Using a Mask
This feature is only available for live videos. For whatever reason, if you do not want your viewers to see your face, you can use the Mask feature to cover your face. This feature was introduced in October 2016, and it is available for most users today.
6. The Facebook Live API
With this function, Facebook allows the broadcasters to incorporate the Live feature into their existing broadcast setup. In other words, Facebook allows you to broadcast your live video from other devices rather than just using your mobile device. This is extremely helpful for a bigger publisher such as Blizzard Entertainment used the Live API to live stream gameplay directly to Facebook.
And with the Live API, it is possible to do a continuous live streaming. This is more complicated to set up, but it can be a great feature for some publishers.
Besides that, publishers can also schedule their live broadcast to build up the audience before they actually start the live streaming. When you choose to schedule a live video, Facebook will post an announcement on your News Feed and your fans will know about the details of the broadcast.
Furthermore, interested users can choose to receive notification from Facebook to remind them before the live broadcast begins. And fans can gather before the broadcast to interact with each other.
Scheduling your broadcast has many advantages, and one of them is that you will be able to share a link to the broadcast on other websites. And Facebook allows the publishers to schedule their live broadcast a week in advance. However, the schedule function is only available for fan pages rather than individual profiles as of now.
7. Facebook Live Metrics
If you are managing Facebook pages, you can track several important metrics to measure your live video performance. Through the Facebook Insights tool, you can measure metrics such as video views, 30-second views, top videos, average percent completion, and much more.
Understanding how your live videos are performing is important if you want to understand your audience and market. You need to measure how well you are doing so that you can grow to a higher level.
Tips for an Effective Facebook Live Streaming
If this is the first time you are doing Facebook live streaming or if you are new to this feature, here are some useful tips how to do it effectively.
1. Plan Your Live Streaming
While it is true that live streaming is on-the-spot kind of broadcast, but you should prepare and get ready for what you are going to say or tell your audience.
Always start with your purpose. Why do you want to do the live broadcast? What do you want to share or show your audience? Take some time to think about how your live streaming will go or what you are going to say during the live broadcast.
2. Warm up Your Fans
Whenever you want to do a live broadcast, make sure you let your fans know about it. This is just common sense. If you want to throw a party, you will invite people to your party and you will tell them upfront, right? You do not want to do a live broadcast where there are no interactions or with only a few viewers.
Therefore, tell your fans upfront and let them know about your live broadcast. Just like how the movie industry using trailers to warm up their fans.
3. Engage with Your Audience
One of the keys to every successful live broadcast is to engage with your audience. When your viewers like or comment something, you can address them in your live video. In fact, Facebook encourages publishers to say hello to the commenters by name and then respond to what they say in their comments.
4. Create a Compelling Description for Your Live Broadcast
Before people click to watch your live broadcast, they will surely read the description and understand what they are about to watch. Hence, writing an interesting description will attract more viewers and it captures the attention of your fans.
5. Broadcast More than 10 Minutes
Facebook actually recommends publishers to go live for at least 10 minutes. The statistic has shown that the longer you broadcast, the more time people will have to discover your stream and join you. You have to plan your broadcast for optimum length, and a 10-minute live broadcast seems to be the best for most people.
6. Go Live with a Strong Connection
This is extremely important when you are doing Facebook Live. You must make sure you have a strong signal for your internet connection before you begin to live stream your video. Wi-Fi provides the best connection, else a 4G connection works alright too. Just remember that you are doing something live, and if the internet connection is poor, it may affect your viewers too.
7. Go Live More Often
The only way to improve your skills and to feel natural when doing live is to do it more often. Yes, you must be creative and choose to go live more often to learn and make it your second nature. So do not be afraid to connect and engage with your fans. In fact, it is crucial to engage with them and share moments with them regularly.
After going through this article, you should understand the importance and benefits of using the Facebook Live function, and how you can leverage on this feature to build a stronger online presence among your fans.
If you have problems or issue with Facebook Live, you can always get support from Facebook directly or stay updated to their latest news regarding the Facebook Live feature from live.fb.com.
Video content has undoubtedly become a crucial part of interacting and also a medium to connect with people on the internet. It is great that you can start right now to explore more about video marketing, especially using the Facebook Live video streaming to grow your influence in the cyber-world.