"In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes" -- Andy Warhol, 1968.
We can only imagine what a genius like Warhol would have thought about the social media era, and the potential to share at the speed of light, your creative expression with an audience around the world. Virtually without cost, and from the comfort of your own home or the convenience of your smartphone.
Andy Warhol was right when he speculated that everyone would have the opportunity to be famous. If you have any doubt, peruse YouTube and check out one of the fastest growing incubators for digital celebrities and monetized self-made brands. Entrepreneurs like Michelle Phan who parlayed her talent for cosmetic design into co-founding the popular subscription brand Ipsy, and millions more around the world.
While YouTube has maintained supremacy as the channel where personal branding creates Internet sensations and monetized income, there are an estimated 81 million videos published in the community. Is it even possible to be heard on YouTube with the volume of noise and proliferation of content? Enter the next wave of video branding; Facebook live stream.
1. Personal branding opportunity.
Consumers are constantly presented with different types of advertorial content throughout the day. Digital natives, or viewers that are constantly plugged-in and engaging with content, can tell the difference between rehearsed advertising, and a fun streaming video meant to connect with customers in a creative and personal way.
Facebook Live provides large brands, small businesses and independent entrepreneurs and consultants the opportunity to meet and greet with potential new customers, and further the personified connection between existing customers and your business. It is a powerful tool because it is easy to see and use for the viewer; they simply need to scroll past your post to be connected to the live video stream, and start engaging with comments, likes or other emoji’s that allow them to participate in real-time. It is as close to crashing a private party, as social media gets, and everyone enjoys it.
2. How to get started with Facebook Live.
There are a number of resources available online to teach people how to create professional looking videos. In truth, Facebook has eliminated much of the technical complication of live streaming with the interface and it is designed to be a “point and shoot” type of application.
Remember that Facebook live stream video is meant to be a little raw, and viewers love the live broadcast authenticity of a non-professional feed. It is more authentic to your audience to see a little bit of movement because they are not expecting a professional quality video. However, there are some tips that can help you create the kind of live stream video that reflects well on your brand.
3. Technical tips.
Use a good quality smartphone. Resolution will vary but performance is good with higher quality mobile devices.
Invest in a tri-pod. While many people are fond of using a selfie stick, it is almost impossible to eliminate shaking or narrate without interruption when you are trying to balance a five-foot long telescopic stick. Portable, lightweight mini-tripods are available that start at under $20.00.
Pick a well-lit area, but avoid streaming with the sunlight directly behind you, as it will fade the overall picture quality of your video.
4. Marketing tips.
Schedule your Facebook Live video (to the best of your ability) when you know your audience will be watching. Target your viewers when they are most likely to be browsing for content on their computer, or mobile device.
Write a great description for your video. Inform people of the essential facts including where you are, who you are with, what you are doing, and why it is interesting.
Ask questions to your viewers during the live video. This helps your audience participate in what is going on, and that is fun and exciting for them. You will also get more traffic and post shares when people are liking and commenting on your feed.
Be yourself. Viewers are not tuning in to see something scripted, they are watching something similar to live action news. If it feels rehearsed to your audience, you won’t get the same results than being “in the moment” and authentic in your sharing.