WHAT'S ALL THIS TALK ABOUT LIVESTREAMING?

May 26, 2016

(As seen in APRIL 2016 iBlog Magazine)

If you haven't added live viedo (livestreaming...live broadcasting...) to your social media marketing plsn, you are leaving money on the table!

Live video is the hottest and fastest-growing way to reach your audience and there are more and more platforms to utilize every day! Read on....

You may have heard a lot about livestreaming (broadcasting live) in the past few months, and with good reason. Livestreaming is the fastest-growing medium out there right now and people from all over the world are connecting 24/7 on these interactive, real-time social media platforms both personally and professionally in meaningful ways. Although I’m also active on more traditional social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, my business has been built off livestreaming, specifically Periscope, Blab and MeVee.

What is livestreaming and why are people flocking to it?

Livestreaming is live broadcasting and broadcasters and viewers from all over the world come on these platforms to discuss topics of interest without having to worry about the proper lighting, cameras or finding a broadcast booth. To livestream, you just need a smartphone, tablet or computer and both broadcasters and viewers can be do it anywhere at anytime. They don’t even need to be in the same country! 

Each livestreaming platform offers different features. Platforms like Periscope (owned by Twitter) and Meerkat allow for only one broadcaster, while Blab allows for up to four broadcasters at once as well as the ability to have people come in and out of the “chat” (audience) to become a broadcaster themselves! MeVee is currently also a one-broadcaster platform, but it has an upcoming feature that will allow you to share the broadcast and have two people broadcasting on the same screen.

How do you choose which livestreaming platform is right for you?

What all of these platforms have in common is that they are all incredibly fun and effective ways to communicate live and provide valuable content to hundreds of people at once! All of the platforms I’ve listed at the end of this article are public, but some (Periscope and MeVee) also have the option to produce a broadcast for a private audience. Blab, on the other hand, was always intended to be a public-only “conversation” platform.

What is Facebook Live?

Facebook Live (which, until recently, was only available to celebrities, is being slowly rolled out to the public and is livestreaming through your personal Facebook account. Once your Facebook page (the one you use for business) is “verified,” you may broadcast about business from there. To see if you have Facebook live, go to your personal account and click “status” at the top right. At the bottom of the screen, you’ll see several icons. If you have five icons, the fifth one is Facebook Live. It looks like a man with two circles around his head, as though he is sending a signal out…If you only see four icons a the bottom of the page, the fourth being location, be patient. Facebook Live will come to you in time!

As of Feb. 20, 2016, there are at least 10 livestreaming platforms (outside of Facebook Live) currently in use. I built my business on Periscope and currently broadcast about 30 times a week on Periscope, Blab and MeVee.

Where do I begin with livestreaming?

Like anything else, I advice people to use social media platforms that make sense for them and their business and that fit into their schedule and lifestyle. Pick one to start with, read about the features and how to use it and try it out! Use it once a day for ten straight days to see if you like it and can see yourself continuing. If it works, great, if not, that’s okay, too. Livestreaming isn’t for everybody. There’s no “edit” button, and no “perfect” broadcast exists. You have to be okay being imperfect and others seeing that. I love livestreaming for those reasons! In my opinion, livestreaming platforms build the know-like-trust factor exponentially faster than any other social media platform. My business is proof of that!

Try these livestreaming platforms!

Blab

DingIt 

FireTalk

Meerkat

MeVee

MyEye

Periscope

Twitch

YouNow

Bonnie Frank is a business coach and social media strategist. You can find her at http://bonnielfrank.com and catch her daily broadcasts on Periscope.