If it is on Instagram, Facebook or other social media platforms, live video content provides a fun and welcome change to your social media strategy. It allows more connection between your brand and your customers, and can even introduce a new audience to your company.

But there’s an art to doing live video well, and it’s important to understand the basics before you start streaming. To help, a panel of Rolling Stone Culture Council members share their best practices for a successful social media live stream—from value-added assurance to upfront advertising—and how to adapt these practices to your strategies.

Collaborate with other creators

After doing over 1,000 live streams on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, I discovered a strategy that consistently helped me achieve more influence, impact, and income. The strategy is to do live streams in collaboration with one to three others. By going straight with others, you make it easier to perform at your best and get into a flow state. It’s also a fun and easy way to network while reaching a new audience. – Josh King Madrid, NFT Magazine — NFTMagazine.com

Select the correct channel

There are many choices to make when going live on social media. Choose the right channel or channel that supports your audience and prepare to go live. Be prepared for technological issues and understand the appropriate engagement during live streaming and after the video is finished. Get straight to the point, be consistent, have the right personnel and equipment on hand. Relax and engage with your audience. Hear their reactions. – Wayne Bell, Really Big Coloring Books® Inc. | ColoringBook.com

Try not to overdo it

The biggest key is not to overdo it and not watch yourself on the screen. Just collect your thoughts, go live and chat authentically. Talk to your viewers as if they are right in front of you. Be transparent, be real and fully commit. Your viewers will feel connected and love you for it. – Steven Le Vine, grape pr + consulting

Keep the pace

Keeping things fast is critical. Live video is inherently faster than recorded. Keeping the pace and interaction fast in your video creates excitement, creates more authority, shows confidence, and shows that what you’re showing matters. Viewers turn away from slow videos; when things are alive, we are naturally more attracted and curious. Rhythm sets the mood for everyone. – Scott Cowperthwaite, AfterFiveMedia

Enjoy the Conversation

Take a breath. Be in the moment and enjoy the conversation – Enthusiasm is contagious! Create a few talking points to help keep you on track and talk around them instead of using a script that doesn’t sound wooden. Don’t worry if you don’t cover them all. Overthinking equals rigidity. – Sara Payan, Apothecarium

The Rolling Stone Culture Council is an invitation-only community for influencers, innovators and creators. Do I qualify?

Adjust your tone depending on your audience

It all depends on your target audience. If they are B2B professionals, sit in your office with a clearly branded banner or shirt. Be clear and concise in your messages. Include these three W’s: Who am I and why am I messaging you? What do you want to know? What action do I want you to take? – Scott Thomas, Genetec Inc.

Keep It Casual

Viewers want to feel like they’re getting a glimpse into your real life, not like they’re attending a formal lecture. Chatty and impromptu discussions or normal, everyday distractions (pets, kids, etc.) actually make live streaming accessible and relatable. – Amanda Reiman, Personal Plants

Just do it

I bet even if you study all the videos properly and learn from others, you will still make mistakes. But after the third video, you will understand your style and it will show. You just have to do it. – Adam Rumanek, Aux Mode Inc.

Create personal account first for practice

Personally, I would advise you to go live video for fun first before committing to doing it for business. Use your private profiles for TikTok or Instagram Stories and start from there. Once you are comfortable and have mastered all the features, then you can use video for your business accounts. – Jenny Ta, GalaxE from HODL Assets, Inc.

Make your content entertaining

The best practice is to be entertaining. Even if we are educating and sharing information, adding the element of entertainment so that it becomes “fun” is the most effective strategy. Nowadays, people’s attention spans are so short and there are so many distractions and entertainment to pass the time watching. Therefore, we need to make our live videos fun, engaging and something people will want to keep watching. – Royston G King, Royston G King Group & Companies

Provide added value

The most important practice for live video is intangible, but it’s what will make you stand out: Provide added value. Use the platform to showcase your personality and never-before-seen content. Consider a specific point of view that not only promotes your service or product, but also, more importantly, shows why people should care. This is great for attracting return buyers and potential customers. – Jacob Mathison, Mathison Projects Inc.

Advertise ahead of time

If you’re nervous about going live, be sure to post in advance so your followers can plan to tune in. You can also create event reminders on multiple social media platforms so your audience gets a reminder when you go live. These actions will allow you to create a virtual guest list of viewers and ensure that your live stream is a success. – King Holder, PROCUSSION

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