Never before has there been a medium that delivers content and instant analytics compilation in the way live streaming does. We now have this amazing ability to broadcast content and see, in real time, how big the audience is for it.
A live stream with big numbers can be a huge point of pride, but low numbers can drive content creators mad. To prevent the latter, here are seven tips to help you grow and retain a strong audience for your live streaming videos and ultimately, your brand.
1. Stick To It
Building an audience for live content will not happen in one broadcast. It takes time. It actually takes way more time than you expect. Don’t get discouraged, because consistency is key. Keep making new live content and try to make each one better than the last. If you do the right things and stick to it, you will eventually get the numbers you want to see.
2. Make Sure Your Tech Is Good
Go live a couple times as a test. How does everything look and sound? Can people be heard clearly? Is your video high-quality? A bad-quality live video guarantees you will shed viewers at record speeds.
Not sure what you need? Not a problem. Check out our live streaming checklist.
3. Define Your Audience
This is a major key to having a high-performing live stream. You must know who your audience is and what they like. This information is critical for both targeting and creating the right content. Think about who you’re trying to reach. Where do they live? How old are they? What do they have in common?
4. Figure Out Which Streaming Platform to Go Live With
Once you know your audience you need to figure out where you can best reach them from. The beauty of live streaming is that there are a large number of platforms you can choose from. Each platform offers various groups of people you might want to reach.
Thanks to Switchboard Cloud, you don’t even have to pick just one platform to go live with because it allows you to broadcast live to multiple platforms simultaneously. Better yet, you can use Switchboard Cloud and broadcast to multiple places on the same platform.
For instance, on Facebook Live you may always want to go live from your brand’s primary Facebook page but you may want to do the same thing on another page or group, to target a specific audience at the same time. With Switchboard Cloud you can do just that, and easily stream to the various places you want, all at once.
Facebook groups are also great places to broadcast your live videos. There are groups for almost any interest or niche, and broadcasting through this platform can be a great way to get your content in front of the specific people you want to reach.
Don’t forget other platforms – if you’re trying to reach a younger audience, Twitch can be a great place for you to go live. If a lot of your potential audience is on Twitter, then Periscope would be a good choice.
5. Speak to the Audience
When you’re trying to draw a particular group of people to your stream, remember to speak to their interests. As you plan the content for your live stream ask yourself, “Is my audience interested in this?” If you’re trying to reach a local audience to promote a local business, for example, you need to be sure you’re building a connection around that. Be sure to talk about local things. Bring on guests who have local name recognition.
Also be sure to actually speak to the audience. Interact with them. Strongly encourage viewers to comment, throughout your live stream and after. Try to answer questions or comments during the broadcast. Reply to comments that come in after the broadcast. When answering comments during the video use the person’s name. That helps build an instant connection with them.
6. Book Good Guests, Use Them For All They're Worth
One great way to grow your audience is to tap someone else’s. Invite well-known, interesting people, that your audience will recognize, to join you. Promote their appearance in advance. Target their fans with posts and links to your stream. Ask the guest to promote and share their appearance across their own network. This will introduce your brand and content to a whole new group of people.
7. Make it a Show
By now I’m sure you’ve seen a pile of statistics that basically say people’s attention span is almost nonexistent anymore. So if you want folks to not only watch, but continue to watch, a large portion of your live stream, you need to keep it interesting.
The best advice I’ve ever heard for that is to “make it a show”. Think about any TV program you’ve ever seen. They have a format, they follow a template. They promote and hype things to keep you around. They amp up the energy and they don’t let things go on too long. Always keep it moving.
If you incorporate these seven tips into your digital marketing strategy and keep at it, you’re bound to build a loyal, reliable audience that will “tune in” every time you go live.