“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.”
Creating a regular live streaming session is a great way to interact with your audience. It means you have the benefit of real-time interaction, which allows you to get to heart of what matters to your audience.
A regular live streaming session helps build a network of people who want to interact with your product or service. Thanks to the many social media platforms that cater for live streaming; it has never been easier to live stream.
However before you start I have a few tips to share with you.
1. Have A Good Idea
It is always best to plan what you are going to do before jumping straight in. Think about what you are trying to achieve with your live streaming and how you are going to do it. Are you going to do a Q&A Session, Guest Interview, Product Demo, Training Session, Behind The Scene Expo or a Live Event? These are only a small selection of ideas for a live event. You need to think about the subject matter you are most comfortable with and what content your audience wants.
2. Know Your Preferred Platform
There are a wide variety of ways of creating a live streaming session and you need to think of the way you want to do it.
You can use a social media platform such as Facebook or YouTube, commercial platforms such as Brightcove, Kultura or Ustream not to mention the various Webinar options.
Choose an option that suits your budget and is the best way of engaging your target audience. Learn the basics of how to optimise your chosen platform and understand how to use it to maximise the impact of your live stream session.
3. Complete A Test Run
No matter what live streaming option you use, you need to do a test run. This will help you check the audio, visuals and your broadband capacity. Your audience will only engage with your live stream session if you ensure they can clearly hear and see your content. A live session is not the time to find out you have a faulty mike or your chosen location only has intermittent broadband connection.
Never assume a location will be okay to live stream, you need to test it and you always need a Plan B. Five minutes before a live broadcast is not the time to realise you have no spare working equipment.
4. Engage Your Audience
Live streaming requires your audience to know in advance what time you will start and finish. Value your audience’s time and start on time. Don’t worry about people joining late, just run regular recaps. This will have the added advantage of keeping your audience on side by reminding them of content they might have missed. Beware too frequent recaps will lose some of your audience, so ensure you have balance.
Keep your content fresh and interesting and give your audience unique and original insights to material they are already familiar with.
Offer incentives to your audience to keep listening, by continually enticing them with valuable content you will divulge later in the live stream. Your audience needs to feel at all times it will be worth watching your live stream until the end.
Remember the great advantage of a live streaming event is the interactive nature of the process. With this in mind keep monitoring the comments and feedback your show is getting. Respond to these comments in real-time and allow them to help you set the shows direction.
5. Be Authentic
Since it is hard to try and behave like someone else the best option is to be your self. By being your authentic self, people will trust what you have to say. It is obvious to most people if someone is being genuinely passionate about their subject.
During your live streaming relax, look straight at the camera and talk as you would to your best friend.
6. Promote Your Content
Success is never instant with live streaming; you need to build up a regular audience. You do this by giving away valuable content and promoting your live stream event.
Depending on your budget you can use paid advertising and organic marketing. Organic marketing relies on you using your time and creativity to advertise your event. Organic marketing is all about creating “word of mouth” and a social buzz about your event. Use your existing social networks to promote your event, run a series of teaser videos, photographs, tweets, Facebook posts, Instagram posts or micro blogs to promote your event.
Use your website to promote your blog and use offline marketing to create awareness of your event. The simple fact is the more people that become aware of your live streaming event the more successful it will be.
7. Create Regular Content
It is not enough to have one live streaming session you need to make it a regular event. It is a bit like blogging, the more regularly you do it the more successful and effective a marketing tool it becomes.
Plan a regular live streaming event and let your audience know when this will occur.
“Little things console us because little things afflict us. “
When you start creating a live streaming session, not only are you an educator you have also become an entertainer. This is why it is so important to be your authentic self. You also need to be as professional as you can and ensure people watching you are not distracted by technical problems.
Embrace the “live” nature of the medium and personalize your show based on the real-time feedback you are getting. If you are a one-person operation, invest in a stand that can accommodate not only your phone camera but also an additional tablet or phone for monitoring your comments.
Create content that gives your audience valuable and original insights, and above all values their time.