We’re live in 3… 2…1… GO! 2016 was filled with an abundance of social media marketing techniques in attempt to reach consumers online. One in particular, live video streaming, is reshaping the way business share video on the web. The number of live streaming apps is skyrocketing, but the two most popular are Facebook Live and Twitter-owned Periscope. So, as a business marketing online, which is a better live video marketing tool to reach consumers on the web?
Believe it or not, Facebook was not the first social media platform to introduce live video. Live streaming app, Periscope, has been allowing web users to live stream for a little over 10 years. Twitter acquired the company in March 2015 and began announced live streaming capabilities toward the end of 2016.
Both Facebook Live and Periscope allow users to live stream directly through their mobile application, so is one really better than the other? To help you decide which live video marketing tool is best for your business, we’ve compiled four criteria for ranking the two live video streaming applications. (You can also check out another breakdown from Social Media Hound).
Ease of Going Live
The digital era has made the creation of top-notch media much less expensive and easier for businesses. Both Facebook Live and Periscope allow users to go live directly from their smart phone or mobile device.
To go live on Facebook, there are 6 steps:
- On the Facebook mobile app, open a new status bar and select the go live symbol (Hint: it looks like a human silhouette with two arcs over its head)
- Give Facebook access to your mobile device’s camera and microphone
- Click the blue continue button on the introduction page
- Choose who can view your live stream by selecting a privacy setting and add a video description
- Set up your camera view and click the “Go Live” button
- To end a broadcast, simply click the “Finish” button and save it to your mobile device
To go live on Periscope, there are 4 steps:
- On the Twitter mobile app, click the “compose a new tweet” button and select the “Live” button (Hint: it looks like a video camera with a red circle in the middle)
- Give Twitter access to your mobile device’s camera and microphone
- Enter a video caption and click “Go Live”
- To end a broadcast, swipe down on your mobile device’s screen
Audience and Consumer Interaction
It’s one thing to be able to live stream content to your consumers, but the level of interaction you have with consumers while you live stream is equally important.
Viewers may comment and use Facebook reactions (“like,” “love,” “haha,” etc.) as many times as they want throughout the live broadcast and may continue commenting and reacting after it has ended. However, tapping reactions too frequently may result in the slowed use or complete loss of the ability to use reactions.
For broadcasters, you do know the total number of viewers, but you don’t necessarily know who is watching unless they comment or react to your stream. Finally, viewers can easily contact the broadcaster through their Facebook page.
Periscope viewers may view the live stream through both the Twitter and Periscope apps; however, their interactions and experience may be different. Viewers can comment and tap for hearts (similar to reacting on Facebook) throughout the live broadcast, but commenting is not allowed after the broadcast has finished. Furthermore, any comments made through the Twitter app will not transfer or be shown through the Periscope app.
For broadcasters, the username of each viewer pops up on screen when they begin watching, so it is easier to see who is viewing your live stream. Unfortunately, the only way for viewers to contact broadcasters is through a private broadcast on the Periscope app, which is only allowed if both users follow each other’s accounts.
Video Streaming Quality
The quality of live video stream will vary depending on several factors. For the best quality, ensure that you have a strong Internet connection (or 4G data connection) and be prepared for video lag.
With a strong wifi connection or 4G data, Facebook’s streaming quality is typically HD or high quality. However, one of the biggest complaints with streaming live video on Facebook is the video lag. There have been reported video lags of up to 30 seconds, meaning your viewers aren’t really seeing you live, but with a 30-second delay.
Like Facebook Live, Periscope recommends a strong wifi connection or using 4G data to live stream to get HD or high quality video. Because the Periscope app is designed specifically for live video streaming, there is virtually little to no reported lag time on live stream videos.
Both Facebook Live and Periscope provide broadcasters with analytics for the performance of their live stream.
One of the biggest benefits of Facebook Live is that it boosts your live stream, meaning it is shown on more users’ news feeds (aka your live stream has a higher reach), while you are live.
Facebook Live offers wide spread of analytic measures through your account’s Page Insights and video library, including:
- Peak concurrent viewers (the highest number of viewers while you were live streaming)
- Viewers during live broadcast (number of viewers during each moment in the live stream)
- 10-second views (number of views lasting 10 seconds)
- Average % completion (how much of the broadcast the average viewer watched)
Periscope’s analytics appear to be much less in depth than those of Facebook Live. There are five main measurements that Periscope provides to broadcasters:
- Total viewers
- Time watched
- Number of viewers who replayed the stream
When it comes to live video marketing, your success lies, as with all marketing techniques, in knowing your consumers. It’s important to know what your business is capable of providing your target market and ultimately, the best way to reach them. Whether your live streaming on Facebook Live or Periscope, the most important factor is communicating with consumers. So get ready for your close up because the marketing world is going live!