In the digital world, we live in, people are spending more and more time online. One big reason people jump on the internet throughout the day is to check their social media channels to post updates on what they’re doing but also to see what their friends and companies they follow are up to. In fact, people spend an average of 116 minutes a day on social media.
One of the most popular types of social media posts are videos.
Here are some social media video stats that may surprise you:
- Facebook videos receive 135 percent more organic reach than a Facebook photo
- People spend more than 3x more time watching a Facebook Live video than a video that’s no longer live
- Online videos will account for more than 80% of all consumer internet traffic by 2020
What does all this mean to your business?
Social media is where your customers are spending their time! Through social media and video, you can engage with your customers like never before. Hopefully, you see that social media and videos should be a part of your digital marketing strategy.
One way to reach your customers with video and social media is through Facebook Live.
Facebook Live is a feature that allows you to “go live” on camera using your smartphone or webcam. This Facebook feature has become an important way for companies to communicate with their fans and customers.
To get to the Facebook Live feature, download the Facebook app from iTunes or Google Play to your phone, login, and go to your Business Page. You’ll see the Live video icon:
You will also see the Live Video option available on your computer:
Look Like a Pro
Are you nervous about this whole “live video” thing? No worries. You don’t need a big video production studio or expensive lighting to make Live videos. All you need is your webcam or smartphone. However, there are a few tools that can make your Live videos look more professional. Here are some video equipment ideas:
Webcam: The webcam that comes on your laptop produces a lower-quality video. If you plan to do Facebook Live videos, it’s best to invest in a better webcam. There are a ton of great webcams on the market at a variety of prices to meet almost any budget. (Logitech makes great ones.) There are even some video cameras that are specifically designed for social media live streaming, like the Mevo camera.
Lighting: It’s best to have great lighting for your videos. Try rearranging your office to get lamps closer to where you’re recording. White light is better than yellow/fluorescent lighting. You can also buy lights that are created to clip on your computer screen or smartphone. These handy lights make a big difference in the quality of your videos.
Microphone: Sound quality is important. A lavalier (“lav”) microphone can enhance the quality of your voice. You can get a lav mic if you go live on your mobile device/smartphone. If you’re recording at your computer, you could get an external microphone (instead of using your computer’s microphone.) The Yeti microphone will make you sound like a rock star.
Selfie-Stick: If you’re filming in your store, office, warehouse, or any other place where you’ll be walking around, a selfie-stick is a must-have to keep your camera steady.
Teleprompter Software: Many people freeze at the thought of going live. One way to prevent stage fright is to use teleprompter software. This allows you to upload your script, and the text will scroll on a screen as you read along. There are many teleprompter apps available for smartphones as well as for your computer.
Facebook Live Topic Ideas
The next thing you may worry about is the topic of your Live video. What are you going to talk about? Here are a few topic ideas to get your creative juices going:
- Tutorials showing how to do something (like changing the oil in your car)
- Sneak peek at an upcoming product or service your company is offering
- Question and Answer (Q&A) session that allows you to answer questions that come directly from the people watching your Live video or questions that are frequently asked by your customers
- Talking about recent customer reviews and testimonials is a great way to show off what your happy customers are saying about your company
- Presentations or demos showing how to use your products or services
- Industry updates (especially great if you’re attending a conference and learning new things that you can share with your viewers)
Talk about topics that your customers are interested in!
If you know in advance that you’re going to do a Facebook Live video, create a Facebook Event to promote the date and time to your fans and followers. This will increase the chances of people attending your Live video stream.
When you go Live on Facebook, it’s important to engage and communicate with your audience. That’s the whole point! Starting your Facebook Live video can be the most difficult step. You want to allow enough time for people to join your livestream before you get into the main point/topic.
Here are some tips to get your Facebook Live video going:
- Introduce yourself, and tell people what you’re going to talk about (“Hi, everybody! My name is Sherry Bonelli, and today I’m going to talk with you about how important online customer reviews are to your business.”)
- Thank people for watching (“I know you all are busy, so I just wanted to say thanks for joining me today.”)
- Look at the names of the people joining your Live video stream, and mention their first name (“Hi, Tom, thanks for stopping by!”)
- Encourage watchers to press the Like or heart button (“I’d really appreciate it if you could show me some love by clicking the Like button. That’d make my day.”)
- Ask where they’re viewing from (“Can you tell me where you all are watching from? Oh, Hi, Susan! I see you’re in sunny Tampa, Florida!)
- Remember the replayers that will watch the recording of your Live video later (“For those of you who are watching this recording, welcome!”)
These are the types of things that will get your viewers engaged with your Live video right from the start.
As you’re going through your main talk, remember that people may be joining at different times throughout your Live video. So if you’re talking about a specific topic, it’s good to let newcomers know the topic of your video by saying something like, “For those of you just joining, today we’re talking about [insert topic here].”
Encourage people to ask questions, and leave comments. The more engagement you get from your viewers, the better!
When you’re all done, be sure to thank people for watching. and let them know that you’ll be back soon with another video. Give them a call to action (CTA), like asking them to follow you on Facebook, visit your website or give you a call for more information. Whew! You made it…
I’m not going to kid you. The first few times you do a Facebook Live video can be a little nerve-wracking, but after you’ve done Live video a few times, it’ll get much easier. In no time, you’ll be a pro!
The most important thing about Facebook Live videos? Just do it! Set a goal for your company as to how many videos you’ll do each month, and stick to the plan. In no time, you’ll grow a loyal following of customers who look forward to your next Live video. Good luck!
Do You Want to Learn More About Video Marketing?
Want to learn more about how you can use video marketing for your business? Attend SCORE’s Video Marketing Made Easy webinar on September 21st.
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Funded, in part, through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.