5 Steps to Your First Facebook Live
By: Lucy Rendler-Kaplan
January 8, 2019
Have you jumped into live streaming yet? No?! What are you waiting for? While Facebook rolled out the feature more than two years ago, many marketers still seem to have a fear of going live, yet the ones who have, see almost immediate benefits.
Live streaming is great because it allows you to share in real time. It also helps both current and potential consumers make an immediate connection with “the face behind the brand.”
The cool thing about a Facebook Live video is that once you have recorded it, the video stays on your page. That means that people who might have missed you live will still get to see you show up on people’s feeds well after you’ve gone live. You already know that posts with likes, comments and shares are prioritized on the news feed. And because of Facebook’s ever-changing algorithms, live videos streaming in real-time are now getting ranked even higher, so even more people are seeing them. In fact, according to AdWeek, Facebook Live videos receive five times more engagement than standard photo posts!
Keeping this in mind, try to get viewers to interact during your live stream. This not only keeps audiences engaged, but it almost ensures you will get more views. While you are live, ask questions of your audience and then tell viewers to reply in the comments. You can even add an incentive by running a live contest during your broadcast – ask viewers to like, share and comment on the post and then they can be entered into a free giveaway, for example.
Setting Goals for Your Facebook Live
There is pretty much an infinite number of ways Facebook Live can fit into your marketing strategy. Just make sure that you have a strategy and know why you are going live. Here are three common reasons brands go live on Facebook.
Answer Questions: A great way to utilize Facebook Live is to answer questions in real-time. An easy way to do this is to gather a few questions people regularly ask when commenting on posts or writing in to your website. If one person has a certain question, others likely do too.
Promote an Event: Smart marketers know that creating FOMO (sorry. Not a huge fan of the term, but it’s relevant here…) creates interest. You can stream live from an event you are hosting and if you do it well, you will create new customers that won’t want to miss your next event.
Access: These days, people want more than a great product. They want a great product from a great brand. But how do you really know what’s hiding behind a logo? Facebook Live gives you the perfect opportunity to introduce the people who make up your company. You can do quick interviews with employees in various departments, show off your office space, or give a sneak peek into a meeting or event. When people get a glimpse into your company culture, it can help with finding new hires, followers and even brand advocates who want to be a part of what you’re showing off. In fact, a recent Sprout Social Index survey found that 71 percent of social marketers use employees as influencers or advocates.
5 Steps to Your First Facebook Live
Let’s start with the basics. All you need is your mobile phone or a desktop computer with a good camera/webcam and microphone.
Step 1: Click the “Live Video Button”
This part is easy. If you’re on a mobile device or going live from your Facebook profile rather than a Facebook business page, a small button will appear as you start a post that says “Live Video.” Click it!
If you’re going live from a Facebook business page on your desktop, you’ll see a box that says “Live Video” below the post box. Click it!
Step 2: Write an Engaging Description
Next, you will be prompted to write a description of what you’ll cover in your live stream. This is very important! What you say here will either draw viewers in or lead them to keep scrolling. You want to be direct in the description, but still keep an air of mystery to it, so people feel compelled to tune in.
Step 3: Ready, Set, Stream!
It’s time to “Go Live!”
If you are streaming from a company page, you will want to be “camera ready.” What you wear should reflect your company and company culture, and definitely ensure there’s nothing in your background that viewers shouldn’t see.
Step 4: Click “Finish” When You’re, Well, Finished
Make sure you know where the “finish” button is so you can end your video professionally. Hint: it’s at the bottom of the page.
Step 5: Post It
Once you’re no longer live, remember – your video lives on for those people that didn’t catch it live. Share your video to any (and all!) relevant pages and profiles. This is also the time you can make any edits to your original description, add captions and choose what thumbnail will appear with your video.
Make sure you video HAS an actual end. This is also the time to include your CTAs. What do you want your audience to do? Visit your website for a unique discount code? Sign up for your mailing list? Share the recording? There are many options, but be sure you DO end the post with a way for viewers to take an action.
A few days after your live stream has ended, and your video has been on your page for a bit, go into your “Insights” tab and see how you did!
In this tab, you will see the usual metrics – minutes viewed, number of unique viewers, video views, the number of reactions, comments and shares. Facebook Live videos also provide metrics around peak live viewers, total views, average view time people reached, and demographics of who watched.
Utilize this data to help inform your Facebook Live strategy moving forward.
Hopefully now you are a bit more confident in getting started with Facebook Live. We’d love to hear how you use Facebook Live. Send us a message or reply to us on social media and share any tips or questions!
Follow Lucy: @LUCYrk78