Regardless of whether it is on Instagram, Facebook or other social media platforms, live video content provides entertainment and a welcome variation to your social media strategy. This allows for a greater connection between your brand and your customers and may even introduce a new audience to your company.
But there’s an art to doing live videos well, and it’s important to understand the basics before you start streaming. To help, a panel of members of Rolling Stone’s Culture Council share their best practices for a successful social media live stream—from adding value to promoting upfront—and how to adapt those practices to your own strategies.
Collaborate with other creators
After doing over 1,000 live streams on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube, I discovered one strategy that consistently helped me achieve more influence, impact and income. The strategy is to do live broadcasts in collaboration with one to three others. By going live with others, you make it easier to give your best and get into a flow state. It’s also a fun and easy way to communicate while reaching a new audience. – Josh King Madrid, NFT Magazine — NFTMagazine.com
Select the correct channel
There are many choices when going live on social media. Choose the right path or channel that supports your audience and be prepared for the live stream. Be prepared for technology issues and understand proper engagement during live and post-video. Live with goals, be consistent, have the right staff and equipment. Relax and engage with your audience. Hear their feedback. – Wayne Bell, Really Big Coloring Books® Inc. | ColoringBook.com
Try not to overthink it
The biggest key is not to think too much or look at the screen. Just collect your thoughts, go live and chat authentically. Talk to your viewers as if they were right in front of you. Be transparent, be real and fully commit. Your viewers will feel connected and love you for it. – Stephen Le Vine, Viticulture Company + Consulting
Keep up the pace
Keeping things fast is critical. Live video is inherently faster than recorded. Keeping the pace and interaction fast in your video creates excitement, builds more authority, shows confidence, and shows that what you’re showing matters. Viewers turn away from slow videos; when things are lively, we are naturally more attracted and curious. The pacing sets the mood for the whole thing. – Scott Cowperthwaite, AfterFiveMedia
Enjoy the conversation
Breathe. Be in the moment and enjoy the conversation—enthusiasm is contagious! Create some talking points to help you stay on course and discuss them instead of using a script so it doesn’t sound crazy. Don’t worry if you don’t cover everything. Overthinking equals stiffness. – Sarah Payan, The Apothecary
Adjust your tone depending on your audience
It all depends on your target audience. If these are B2B professionals, sit in your office with a clearly visible brand banner or shirt. Be clear and concise in your messages. Include these three W’s: Who am I and why am I messaging you? What do I want you to know? What action do I want you to take? – Scott Thomas, Genetec Inc.
Viewers want to feel like they’re getting a peek into your real life, not like they’re attending a formal lecture. Conversational and impromptu discussions or normal, everyday distractions (pets, kids, etc.) actually make for accessible and relatable live streams. – Amanda Reiman, Personal Plants
Just do it
I bet even if you study all the how-to videos and learn from others, you will still make mistakes. But after the third video you will understand your style and it will show. You just have to do it. – Adam Rumanek, Aux Mode Inc.
Create personal accounts first for practice
Personally, I would advise you to watch live videos for fun first before committing to doing it for business. Use your personal TikTok or Instagram Stories profiles and start from there. Once you feel comfortable and have mastered all the features, then you can use videos for your business accounts. – Jenny Ta, GalaxE of HODL Assets, Inc.
Make your content fun
The best practice is to be funny. Even if we are educating and sharing information, adding the element of entertainment so that it becomes “edutainment” is the most effective strategy. Nowadays, people’s attention spans are so short and there are so many distractions and fun things they can spend their time watching. Therefore, we need to make our live videos fun, engaging and something people will want to keep watching. – Royston G King, Royston G King Group & Companies
Provide added value
The most important live video practice is intangible, but it’s what will make you stand out: Provide added value. Use the platform to showcase your personality and never-before-seen content. Have a specific angle in mind that not only promotes your service or product, but also, most importantly, shows why people should care. This is great for attracting return buyers and leads. – Jacob Mathison, Mathison Projects Inc.
Advertise in advance
If you’re nervous about going live, be sure to post in advance so your followers can plan to tune in. You can also create event reminders on many social media platforms so your audience gets a reminder when you go live. These steps will allow you to create a virtual guest list of viewers and ensure that your live stream is a success. – King Holder, PROCUSSION