Starting in May, every month I will be going to my Facebook page to live stream with a roundup of the main changes, updates or topics in social media that have happened that month. The majority of this will be relevant to businesses and organisations who use social for PR / marketing / customer service, but I’m also going to be touching upon anything I think is valid and useful to my viewers in a personal capacity too because I’m passionate about helping everyone understand social and be safe online. (This month I mentioned the LinkedIn data breach and a WhatsApp virus doing the rounds)
Each stream will be 15 – 20 minutes long and will also include a top tip, trick or hack. This will vary each month, from beginner to advanced and will be specific to one channel.
As this develops I’d love to take questions from my viewers too and answer them on air so either submit them to me ahead of the broadcast (via comment or message) or send them through during.
You can get notified each time I stream live by turning on notifications to my Facebook page: click the drop down arrow next to ‘liked’ and the bottom option is ‘notifications’. Click ‘on’!
Why Facebook live?
To grow a business you need to become more established and to do that you need to make a name for yourself. Show your potential customers that you know your stuff! This can be done in many ways and for me, I’d had an idea in my head for a while about wanting to give value to my followers by giving (free) info about how to use social well for communicating/PR/marketing but I really didn’t want to do it in the form of a newsletter. So many companies send newsletters with listicles and links and by it’s very nature there’s plenty of information you can find online but it’s surely hard as a consumer to find the time to read and cut through all of that. Not only this, but as a business, it feels like a lengthy process. (By the way, I’m not dismissing email marketing by any stretch, but for me, my email strategy will be focused on something else.)
I was definitely one of the first lucky folk to get access to (or at least to have noticed!) Facebook live on my personal profile a number of months ago. I was instantly obsessed about the prospect and super excited to be using it…but while I was loving it in a personal capacity I still hadn’t had a go on my business page, and I’ve now put that down to a few things:
- Tools. I didn’t have the equipment or an extra person to help me live stream the things I was thinking of streaming. (I later told myself / decided that I didn’t need an extra person!
- Time flys. As quick as I had a thought about what I could stream, 10 days would have gone by without me doing anything with it. In hindsight I’m glad because it avoided a scatter gun approach to doing ‘whatever’ and brought me to a place where I have clarity about what I’ll be using it for and when.
- Self doubt / fear or being judged. Ok, I don’t doubt my ability or knowledge and I absolutely knew 100% (and more!) than live streaming would work and would have huge results, but, and I guess it goes back to the time thing, the more I thought about doing it, the more I questioned it’s value or success. And so it went back to a case of missed opportunities. It really surprised me that I was feeling like this, but I guess it’s human nature.
It finally came to me though. A lightbulb moment. And I sat on it for a few weeks until I told one person – someone I admire a lot – and when her response immediately was ‘yes!do it!’ I knew it was time to just get on with it.
How did it go?
Really well! It wasn’t perfect, but I really don’t mind that. I didn’t want it to be perfect and my advice to anyone looking to utilise live video is – do not strive for perfection. As time went on and more viewers showed up and reactions started to pop through, my nervous ‘wine allergy’ looking rash started to show, which was it was a sign I was starting to over think things!! But hey, it was my first time. In 12 months time that’s not going to be happening anymore…either that or I’ll be wearing high neck tops and shirts!!
I could definitely do with slowing down on the next one and because I decided on the Wednesday my first round up would be the Friday of the same week, there’s a couple of things I missed. But, as I said. It can’t be perfect and I can’t touch upon it all. That would be impossible, boring and silly of me to try!
One thing I didn’t mention though was the ability to now broadcast live to your Facebook page via professional recording equipment. Hands up – I’d have to pass the code to a tech friend to implement but it is certainly possible to do and is a new feature under ‘videos’ in your publishing tools. Why is that important to mention? Because it’s moving live streaming away from relying on a mobile phone and a tripod, to giving the ability to stream business events and council meetings (hint hint!) via the professional video equipment your team / event management company will all ready be using!
There’s a few other lessons I’ve jotted down from the experience of doing it live and from watching the replay, but I won’t go on! I did want to mention though that I’m going to have a play with the times of day I stream and where I do it…just so I can get a good feel of what works best, so do stay tuned and Give me a shout if you want to understand in more detail the opportunities for you to use live video on Facebook yourself.