Marketing Goes Live

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Marketing Goes Live
Marketing Goes Live

“Real time feedback rocks!” wrote one of the participants in the audience to a Periscope presentations by Scott Adams. That observation was prompted not just by the flurry of comments, but by Adams' responses to some of them on the air.

The beauty of live streaming lies the feeling of immediacy and active engagement that is absent in prerecorded programs. That's why live video is gaining popularity in social media. Marketers are taking note and we can expect to see a lot more of it used for brands aspiring to deliver authentic experiences in 2017.

A number of brands have already made use of Twitter-owned Periscope to connect with audiences.  Some use it as a medium for one-way communication to introduce new products, services or locations; share what they're doing behind-the-scenes; or broadcast an interview.

But others realize the potential in the two-way communication possibilities built into the medium. In addition to the sentiments expressed in the comments, the "hearts" that float up in real time represent the level of audience engagement. As Single Grain points out, that is very valuable information, suggesting what will prove most effective for a target market when planning future broadcasts.

The responsive model also works for Facebook, which has been pushing its Live Video very strongly. In an email, Simone Levien, Corporate Communications Manager at Facebook shared some of the factors that make Facebook Live appealing for marketing, including an observation note “that people comment more than 10 times more on Facebook Live videos than on,regular videos.” That kind of engagement is gold for brands who have been tapping into live video streaming into their social media advertising strategy.

That payoff for increased engagement exceeds the level achieved during the live event, as most of those videos remain accessible to viewers afterwards. Levien presented a number of recent examples of brands utilizing Facebook Live:

  • At the end of January, several auto brands will go Live to reveal their new vehicles at the 2017 Detroit Auto Show. GMC, Toyota, Nissan, Infiniti, VW, BMW and Bentley are among the brands with auto reveals on Facebook Live this year
  • As part of Airbnb's "Live There" campaign, the brand partnered with Disney for live streaming of the April premiere of "The Jungle Book" in Los Angeles
  • HomeAway went live for the first ever overnight stay at the Eiffel Tower. The brand used the Live content for ads after the fact and drove significant business results.

A brand that used Facebook Live in conjunction with YouTube Live is Wix.com, choosing those channels to launch its Super Bowl ad campaign centering around a business everyman named Felix on January 17.  Although it didn't make use of Periscope, Wix still used the Twitter platform to put the spotlight on its videos, and enhance engagement by re-tweeting one of the commercial's stars:

Of course, live video streaming does not function in a marketing vacuum. In 2017 we will likely see a lot more of this kind of confluence of marketing outreach, which makes different channels and even streams within channels work together to effectively direct and engage audience attention.  

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