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8 Brilliant Uses for Facebook Live

Thursday, April 14, 2016
Grant Whiteside

Facebook Live is the latest livestreaming service that is being rolled out all Facebook users. The 1.6 billion users of Facebook will be able to access live stream information and viewers will have the ability to add comments, ask questions or access the feed after the live event has finished, providing a service that current livestreaming competitor Periscope cannot.

Facebook Live for Brands

This is one of the hottest opportunities for brands to reach, engage, and grow their Facebook audience since video and social became a marriage made in heaven.

It’s a realisation that brands can do so much more with Facebook than ever before, and the opportunities available should be more attractive to a wider variety of types of brands that may have shied away from making the most of Facebook previously.

Facebook Live

What Types of Brands Should Use Facebook Live?

Beyond the Facebook Live being the latest new tool to play with, lots of brands will try it out without necessarily pulling it in as part of an all-encompassing content strategy.

Publishers such as The New York Times are already providing live video to accompany the written content they are producing. As other brands come on board, the range of opportunities and inevitable change in how we communicate with audiences will be an interesting space to watch.

Can Facebook do something that Periscope or YouTube cannot?

Looking at the sheer volume of the potential audience and where YouTube has failed to align itself to the ill-fated Google + platform, Facebook has an opportunity to re-establish itself as a platform that can reach wider audience groups that have abandoned the platform and younger audience groups now found on Instagram, Yik Yak and Snapchat.

It’s looking like a question of how Facebook gets brands with younger audiences back on Facebook and gets more brands engaging with the platform.


Why Brands Should Use Facebook Live?

  1. Product Demonstrations

The ‘how to’ video space has been owned by YouTube for years, albeit somewhat hampered by a lack of consistency, quality, and brand control. This is an opportunity for video demos to go live and for brands to own their video space again.

From food porn demos, product releases, live auctions, and store openings, there is a plethora of opportunities here.

  1. Customer Service

If ‘live chat’ works well on an ecommerce website, it seems like the inevitable extension of live video customer service will follow shortly.

  1. Gigs, Music, Entertainment, and Demos

What you sound like and what you look like are key elements of how artists are perceived by their audience. If you missed the gig (or your daughter’s school play) or want to see the ‘live demo’ of the latest up and coming artist, Facebook Live seems like the ideal channel.

  1. News and Events

The perfect tool for a journalist, a blogger, or someone simply interested in the subject matter. This has the opportunity to be the press room for the masses.  With the chance to participate, ask questions, poll the responses and retarget audiences, news livestreaming may change the way journalism works within the social media space.

  1. Conferences

There is something that livestreaming cannot do, and that’s networking. However, the potential to grow audience numbers and for brands to see the value of their reach from streaming live presentations from conference events is exciting.

The potential benefits of brands cutting down travel costs to conference organisers who provide a wider range of distribution options to their paid customers leaves us with an air of disruption.

And disruption is a great thing – it keeps us on our toes.

  1. The Interview

Either from a recruitment perspective or the one-to-one journalist-led interview, we’re going to see this form of live engagement grow. Will we see more live cringe-worthy moments from ill-prepared politicians?  Will presenting on a camera be a new but expected skill set in the world of recruitment?

As much as the channel will grow, the expectations of being ‘video friendly’ in an unedited fashion may soon follow.

  1. Exclusives and the Backstage Pass

There is nothing like seeing something that you could not see any other way. The exclusive behind-the-scenes format makes people feel special, especially if it’s live.

We haven’t considered monetisation from a practical perspective yet, but where there’s an opportunity to produce content that provides additional unique value, one could see how a paywall would work here. Watch this space!

  1. Celebrities, Wannabees, and Those Who Want to Rant

Hey, it’s a free world, if you can find a live audience that want to see and hear what you want to rant about, the world is your oyster!

I can think of celebrities that currently hide behind their bland 140 character tweets that will fall over badly if they try to hurdle the Facebook Live wall. We don’t all have a face for the camera, and retweeting someone else’s genius hardly deserves any credit.

The stars of this new channel will be those that can demonstrate their talent, passion, humility, and an ability to engage their audiences. Setting up Facebook Live is a simple as posting on your Timeline and hitting the ‘Go Live’ button. Video live streams will run for 30 minutes.

Lights, Camera, Action.

…Can we run that again please?


Grant Whiteside
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