The fastest-growing and most effective area of content production right now is live-streaming video. And in an age where everything is on-demand, we are seeing a return to live events as a way of creating a shared, interactive experience.
You might want to consider producing live video to complement your current content strategy if your brand has an established voice, consistent story, and core message. Brand awareness is established through various forms of content—social media posts (text, infographics, images), blog posts, podcasts, and videos.
Smart brands and digital marketers are using live videos—or ads that run adjacent to live videos—to reach their audiences, engaging followers that are already familiar with what your brand represents, and even attracting new followers. Here are 15 important things to consider if you plan to create live video or run advertisements during live streams.
How much live video versus on-demand video is being watched?
- People all across the board watch live video 10 to 20 times longer than on-demand content.
- Live video content is made up of three major categories with breaking news accounting for 56%, concerts/festivals at about 20%, and speakers/conferences, which also weigh in at about 20%.
- Cable TV is becoming increasingly unpopular. If cable subscribers knew they could stream all of their favorite live events—sports, news, and award ceremonies—30% say they would cancel their cable.
The amount of time spent watching a Facebook live video is three times longer than an archived live video. More attention captured means more opportunities to create brand awareness or funnel consumers into action with a newsletter sign up, share, or purchase.
Creating brand awareness and building trust with live videos
Live videos are considered raw and more authentic than polished, branded videos. The good news is that means you don’t necessarily need to go run out and get the $200 haircut just to be on camera. Your audience will feel a special, more intimate connection to their favorite brand when a video is spontaneous or unrehearsed. Here are ways to engage viewers with live video.
- When consumers view ads that run adjacent to breaking news, it increases their overall trust in the brand. This is called the “news trust halo.” Since news makes up over half of all live content, digital marketers would be wise to take advantage of this.
- Behind-the-scenes content would entice 87% of people to watch a live video over a TV broadcast. Make a lasting impression on your audience by showing them content that is unexpected, unfiltered, and immersive.
- Viewers are 67% more likely to purchase a ticket to a concert, or any other event, after watching a live video of a similar event. Follow up live video events with an in-person or virtual tour schedule.
- Multiple video ad formats increase ad recall, brand awareness, and purchase intent. Try posting similar but unique live videos in both Instagram stories and Instagram news feed, or in both Facebook Live and Facebook Stories.
Generational trends in streaming
If you’re tracking demographics, you know who follows you, buys your products, or subscribes to your services. It would be a waste of time and resources to advertise to Baby Boomers on Instagram, since they spend more time on Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn. Here are some generational stats to steer you in the right direction.
- Millennials watch the most live content — 63% of people ages 18 to 34 regularly live-stream video, and their preferred platform for either live or pre-recorded is YouTube.
- Generation C — the psychographic that thrives on curation, community, creation, and content — can become your most loyal customers. According to a Think with Google report, 59% Gen of C are turning to the internet as their main source of entertainment. Living in the present moment, they are motivated by FOMO (fear of missing out); therefore, live video content from their favorite brands or influencers that airs once and never again is the best way to capture Gen C’s attention.
YouTube trends show that 75% of Gen Xers watch YouTube for nostalgic content, 73% for DIY content, and 68% for news and pop culture, but in general are less likely to watch live video unless they are keeping up with breaking news. (Remember that news trust halo?)
Growth and the future of live-streamed video
Coronavirus led to an acceleration of live video as an essential form of connection. Since people couldn’t meet face-to-face, all events including meetings, concerts, sporting events, music and entertainment events, and awards shows went virtual. With people craving human connection and interaction, the notion that other people are watching at the very same time you are is exciting and fosters engagement. Let’s take a look at how live video is taking off.
- Between March and August 2020, the occurrence of live streaming events increased by 300%, and 23% of people plan to continue live-streaming post-outbreak.
- In April 2020, Instagram Live usage shot up by 70% and makes up 13% of all live stream viewers across social media.
- Since February 2020, Linkedin Live Streams have grown by 158%, with 7x more reactions and 24x more comments than standard video posts.
- According to Jannika Bock, Director of Client Solutions at Google, in 2022, more than 80% of consumer internet traffic will be driven by online video. And with consumers spending more time at home than ever before, the basic need for the human joined experience will have people turning toward live video more than ever before.
Are you ready to create live videos?
Your time is precious, so you don’t want to put a ton of time and effort into something that isn’t going to produce results for you. Make sure your presence is established. When you have a core brand with a following, audience, or consumer that can be reached through any social media platform, then the timing may be right for you to experiment with live video.
The type of content you put out depends on your brand, but don’t remain confined to what you would normally present in tailored, recorded video content. On Facebook or Instagram, consider live-streaming a random customer review, a quick look at everyday people using your product, or special tips and tricks on how to get the most out of your product or service. On Tiktok, do a recipe, funny skit, or dance. On Linkedin, share advice, wisdom, or a message from one of the employees. Live videos don’t have to be perfect; that’s what makes them so unique.
There is a world of opportunity in 2021 for those looking to build their brand. Take advantage of the resources at your disposal.