The Benefits of Live Video Broadcasting for Brands

Live video, or live streaming, is the real-time broadcast of an event on the Internet, used mainly on social networks.

But what are the advantages of this video format?

And on which platforms should you publish it?

Live Video is Making an Impact

While its no surprise that video content has been dominating the social scene for many years, it’s evident that live video has been making an impact in 2017 and 2018.

A recent study by LiveStream reveals that 82% of respondents prefer to watch a live video from a brand rather than ordinary social media posts. The impact of live videos is also present in Sales as 67% of audiences who watched a live video purchased a ticket to a similar event. Content in this format is making an impact due to its ability to involve everyone – it is popular amongst audiences of all ages – and it encourages engagement. It’s a great way for brands to interact directly with their audiences and for consumers to ask relevant questions. You also have the option of saving your live video for audiences to watch at a later stage – and still, it performs well.

80% of people prefer to watch a live video than a regular video.Click To Tweet

Companies are becoming increasingly more aware of the impact of live streaming and the engagement it allows, especially with the introduction of Periscope, Twitter’s live video partner, Facebook Live, Instagram Live, YouTube Live and LiveStream to the market. With all these new updates and partnerships, is live video just a short-lived trend in a saturated market or is it here to stay?

Choosing Your Perfect Platform Starts with Knowing Your Audience

Of the top popular social media networks today, most have their own live video platform, with its own advantages. They key thing here, as with choosing any social network for regular sharing of content, is that you have to choose the platform that your audience is already on, instead of broadcasting on a network and just hoping for your customers to arrive.

So before you do anything, make sure you know exactly who your customers are, what content they enjoy, which platforms they spend their day on and what motivates them.

  • Facebook Live

Unsurprisingly, Facebook comes out tops in popularity here. If you only want to implement live video on one social media network, choose Facebook. It usually has the furthest reach and it also has some incredible features. These include:

  1. You can go live on both desktop and mobile devices.
  2. The ability to use forward-facing and front-facing cameras on mobile, even switching them while live.
  3. Notify your followers you’re going live.
  4. Save and immediately share the live broadcast once its finished onto your Timeline, which then becomes a permanent video.
  5. Allows your audience to interact in real-time, with both comments and reactions.
  6. Both Page admins and designated “live contributors” can go live on a Page.
  7. Facebook shows your views and engagement metrics.
  8. Ability to pin comments to the bottom of a video, bringing it to the attention of other viewers.
  9. Split-screen videos allowing you to invite contributors to join you live.
  10. Schedule a live broadcast before it happens to help promote it.

Facebook Live - Meltwater Africa Blog on Live Video Content

  • Instagram Live

Instagram’s live platform is part of its story feature – the ephemeral content sharing feature. Fortunately, they’ve rapidly expanded the feature, and now the live broadcast can not only be shared to your story after it’s over, but it can also be saved to your camera roll so it can be shared on other platforms.

One of the best parts of Instagram live is the visibility boost it can give you. Your live video will automatically stand out in the stories feed, and it may also be featured in the Live section of Instagram’s Explore section. This can help connect you with users in your target audience who haven’t heard of you before.

  1. Broadcasts within the app, and both front-facing and self-facing cameras can be used.
  2. Your followers will be notified when you go live.
  3. Users can interact with your video in real time, by commenting and engaging.
  4. Invite chosen guests to your livestream.
  5. Basic Instagram analytics show you viewership and engagement rates straight after your live video is finished.

Instagram Live - Live Video Platforms

  • YouTube Live

YouTube Live has an air of exclusivity as it can only be accessed by accounts with 100 or more YouTube subscribers. This lends itself to brands and influencers that are already well-established on the platform, which can be much more appropriate and direct for your business. Some of its main features include:

  1. Being able to schedule live streams in advance.
  2. You can stream from either desktop or mobile.
  3. You can create events, which allow you to enable backup streams.
  4. Ability to interact with users thanks to the live chat option.
  5. Monitor the video with real-time analytics.
  6. Easily share it to other social media sites with social sharing buttons.
  7. Once you are finished your live recording, it will be automatically archived in your video manager; you can then share this video publicly.
  8. Adjustable privacy settings and decide who can watch.
  9. A red “live” label is shown, which shows up on the home page of YouTube and boosts your visibility.
  10. You have the choice to make video watching statistics viewable by the public.
  11. Automatically block spam messages.
  12. Customizable rights and ownership.
  13. Allowing or disallowing embedding of the video.
  14. Allowing or disallowing up to 4-hour playback during the live stream.
  15. Ability to set age restrictions.

YouTube Live - The Top Live Video Platforms

  • Periscope

Periscope is the live broadcasting app that is connected to Twitter. It actually came before both Facebook Live and Instagram Live, but the latter two have grown to be more popular in overall numbers. Periscope has several great feautres, including:

  1. Both Periscope viewers and the video’s owner can share the video to Twitter, where it will live indefinitely and can help boost engagement.
  2. Users may be notified when your live video begins.
  3. You can auto-save the broadcast directly to your camera roll, allowing it to be shared on other social platforms.
  4. Periscope has its own engaged audience; just make sure you set your videos to public so you can take advantage of that visibility.
  5. Comment moderation features
  6. Video stabilization features
  7. Ability to interact in real time with viewers, who are reacting and engaging with the live broadcast.

Periscope Twitter - Live Video

The Best Time to Go Live (Hint: The Possibilities Are Endless!)

  • Events and Conferences

Events are conferences are a great time to go live as there is always a lot going on. You can video guests arriving, presentations by keynote speakers, networking, interviews of guests and how they are enjoying the event. It can be especially impactful if you are broadcasting to an audience that would have been at the event or conference, but can’t make it due to geographical circumstance.

  • Discussion Panels

Live streaming a panel of people discussing a certain topic can be hugely beneficial as it’s not just something happening, it’s informative and insightful too. Viewers can ask questions, which can be filtered through to the panellists to answer, and viewers can take away actionable insights from the live video.

  • Q & A Session

Or, simply hold a Q & A session with your audience. Your followers and customers might have a multitude of questions about your products or services, but it’s also an effective way to promote your brand authenticity and transparency. In an especially tough situation, like during a crisis, it can be to your advantage to position yourself as a company that puts their customer first and is always honest with their audience.

Using Live Video at Events and Conferences

For more information on how media intelligence can help with your social media and video content strategy, reach out to the Meltwater India team today, or book a free demo to see our media monitoring software in action.

 

The Ultimate Guide to PR Management

We know only too well how much of a challenge PR management can be – even just uttering the term sends any communications professional running for cover.

But it doesn’t have to be a hassle. In fact, with all the PR management tools and tips available today, it is easier to manage your PR efforts than ever before. This includes everything from proving your PR success to your Directors, to accurate and attractive reporting.

In the Ultimate Guide to PR Management, we take you through it all, step-by-step. Read from beginning to end for a well-rounded understanding of PR management, or skip to the chapters you are interested in to gain relevant insights.

PR Myths and Problems, Solved:

1. It is difficult to illustrate the value of PR to all stakeholders in your organization.
2. PR measurement is outdated and does not truly reflect everyday efforts.
3. It is difficult to correlate PR with Social Media.
4. Reporting takes time.

Problem 1: It is difficult to illustrate the value of PR to all stakeholders in your organization.

Solution: With Meltwater, you can understand what is important to each stakeholder, create a dashboard with widgets that relate to those needs, easily share the dashboard on a regular basis.

As PR and communication professionals, we spend a lot of time on external communication, but it is not always easy to communicate PR insights internally. We work closely with journalists and influencers, which means that e-mail marketing helps us to communicate quickly and efficiently with our customers and via social media, we are always in live contact with the target group. How can we optimize our internal communication strategies in order to effectively communicate all the successes and results of the PR department to all internal stakeholders?

With these 3 steps, you can easily view the results as well as the value of the results for all other departments.

1. Ask yourself: What information do I want to share with my stakeholders?

If you start to think about the question of how you can keep all your stakeholders, who all have different goals, informed about the right information, then you will probably encounter a few stumbling blocks.

Not everyone is curious about the reach of a press release, for example. Your CEO may be interested in high-level insights about major developments while business development wants more insight into how you are performing versus the competition or how your audience feels about your latest product launch.

Each department is different, so the first step towards illustrating the value of your PR activities is to identify these differences and then do the same with the interests that come with them. This way you can more easily determine what you have to share and with whom.

2. Connect your results to the identified interests

When you have a good idea of the interests of all your stakeholders, you have to connect your own results to this. Use different parameters to show each stakeholder how you are performing yourself.

Share of Voice

Share your “share of voice” to make clear what themes are trending around your organization. Compare, for example, your own products, discover how things are going with your latest launch and then show them to executives or product development. Also measure your own performance compared to the competition.

The Ultimate Guide to PR Management - Showing the Value of PR with Share of Voice

Sentiment

Easily measure how your target audience feels about new developments by analyzing sentiment. Pass that on to executives within your organization or to your marketing department and discuss the results. Many negative messages about a new campaign? Use your sentiment analysis to measure the impact of any resulting crisis communication. Measure the impact of marketing & PR activities on consumer sentiment and show it clearly to your stakeholders!

The Ultimate Guide to PR Management - Showing the Value of PR with Sentiment

3. Share your results regularly within your organization

In order to ensure that your stakeholders have the right information, you should make it as easy as possible for your readers to understand the context and the content of insights directly. Media monitoring tools such as Meltwater offer dashboards where you can easily see your results yourself and now can share them with your colleagues.

By sharing regular insights within your organization, you keep everyone informed of the results they can use. Develop a schedule and share custom dashboards per week, month or quarter with your main internal stakeholders. Determine the following steps together by discussing your insights. By following the steps above you continuously prove the value of your PR activities!

Problem 2: PR measurement is outdated and does not truly reflect everyday efforts

Solution: Meltwater’s suite of widgets allows you to analyze your efforts in traditional and social media in a number of ways, making it easier to correlate your campaigns and initiatives with data that makes sense.

“If I was down to my last dollar, I would spend it on Public Relations.”
– Bill Gates

A pain point for many, and something we, as marketing and communications professionals, can all relate to – is the measurement of our PR efforts. We all know the ecstatic feeling of seeing the ROI from a great PR victory, but it’s a little different from our Director’s perspective – who usually struggle to understand the correlation between PR and actual business ROI.

In addition to that, it is widely misconstrued that all PR measurement is outdated and does not truly reflect everyday efforts.

The only solution, then, is to have relevant evidence. With the right tools and metrics, you can measure and prove your success.

1. The Difference Between Outdated and Helpful

Unfortunately, many professionals and companies are still utilising outdated and inaccurate measurement techniques.

This leads to PR that doesn’t actually help the brand, or even tarnishes it – for instance, being mentioned in a publication that has a reputation for being biased, or being compared to competitors where the competitors come out on top. In essence, any PR professional’s worst nightmare.

But by using the right metrics and actively avoiding the wrong ones, we are able to discover just how helpful PR can be for our brand and what an integral part of our marketing strategy it is. The question, then, is: how do we know what the right measurement tools are?

2. You Can’t Manage What You Can’t Measure

With global media intelligence company, Meltwater and their suite of advanced and insightful widgets, companies are able to analyse their efforts in traditional and social media in a number of ways. Let’s take a deeper dive into what exactly can be measured and how this is helpful, instead of outdated, PR measurement:
With the media exposure widget, companies can have all their media over a set period of time or within a set region, analysed. Editorial and social media can be analysed separately and the aspects of the widget can be changed to your liking: choose daily, weekly or monthly granularity, whether you want the date by number of hits or percentage of total hits, how you want your chart to look like, and more. Media exposure provides insights into how a particular brand name, campaign, hashtag, product or event is trending over time.

Meltwater Blog | Media Exposure

In this instance, we analysed mentions of Coca-Cola across both editorial and social media over the period of one month, with daily granularity, to have every peak and trough exposed. On editorial media, we can see that on 15 March and 27 March, where the brand had significant spikes, there would have been a press release sent out, a company update or an interview with one of Coca-Cola’s C-level executives, for example.

Meltwater Blog | Media Exposure

With both social and editorial media mentions, both keywords “Coca Cola” and “Coca-Cola” were included in the search, as “Coca Cola” is almost as commonly used in written media as the correct spelling of the brand name.

The potential reach widget is another incredibly helpful measurement tool. This widget gives insight into the number of potential viewers that have been exposed to a brand name, campaign, hashtag, product or event over a specified date range – which, in this instance, is the brand name “Coca-Cola” for one month. This is helpful for understanding whether your press releases are going to the right publications or not, and getting in front of the right audiences or not.

Instead of simply counting the number of articles the brand is mentioned in, potential reach helps you identify the size of your potential audience.

Meltwater Blog | Potential Reach Widget

One of the most commonly asked questions when it comes to measuring PR efforts is; “Are we seeing the ROI?” Unfortunately, it’s also the most difficult to answer.
Measuring the return on investment is challenging as it’s often difficult to find the direct link between the audience who’s viewed your press and subsequently purchased your product. But strong measurement tools make this easier. With Meltwater’s AVE widget (Advertising Value Equivalency), brands are now able to place a monetary value on media coverage.

Another prominent question is, “Which publications are giving us the most coverage?” If you’re looking for the top five or top ten media sources that are mentioning you the most, Meltwater has the tools for you. Top Sources is beneficial for monitoring whether the publications you are paying are mentioning you enough, but also to discover new sources, that you perhaps hadn’t heard of before, that are writing articles about you. The same is for the social sources widgets, where you can identify people or accounts that are talking about you the most, and you can delve deeper into the Top Social Posts and Top Posters widgets too.

For instance, these were the top ten sources mentioning Coca-Cola the most within the last 30 days in Africa:

Meltwater Blog | Top Social Sources Measurement

Because the number one source for the last month is Blogorama, this shows that there are many people mentioning the brand in their blogs. The company would then look at top posters, discover the blogs that are writing about them and decide whether to place more focus on their blog mentions for the next month.

PR Management Made Easy

In essence, these widgets are helping PR, communications and marketing professionals to make sense of the world of data that they are exposed to every day. Most importantly, strong measurement tools, like Meltwater’s, help companies to make more informed decisions. These decisions are data-driven and based on modern, accurate measurement, and make it easy for brands to keep their finger on the pulse, keep up with competition and make the best decisions for the brand.

Meltwater’s dashboards collate millions of piece