In this week’s Fuse Fridays, Molly Codner looks at how Facebook Live is making waves in the social world, and how brands can take advantage of it’s momentum.
For those of us deeply invested in social sharing (or should I say stalking?) we’re all guilty of following celebs, public figures, and now brands. You might say we’ve become addicted to getting that peak-behind-the-curtain look into what they are “really” doing before they go on air or hit the hay for the night. In true Facebook manner, the Zuck jumped on the live streaming bandwagon and came up with something bigger and better- Facebook Live. Move aside Meerkat and Periscope. According to Tech Crunch 53% of Facebook video views come from reshares, a capability neither Meerkat nor Periscope have (Facebook- 1, Everyone Else- 0). In March, Facebook gained another point by releasing an updated algorithm to feature Live videos higher up in the Newsfeed. Last month, real-time reactions were added so you can show your love (or anger?) while you watch; which also happens to help you skip to the good parts if you couldn’t tune in during the broadcast (look for the moments with the most engagement).
This week, there are also talks of allowing some users to exceed the 90 minute Live limit with a 24 hour stream (think endless puppycams!!) Looks like engagement is on the up and up- AdAge found that people comment 10x more on Facebook Live videos than regular videos. Cheers to you, Zuck! #cantstopwontstop
Strategically it makes sense to capitalize on upward trends of video consumption and real-time sharing. Now that we’ve experienced the initial peak, we crave the knowledge of what is happening right now. But how far is too far? How real is too real? (A man accidentally live streamed his baby’s birth to the public when he thought it was just for his family)
Most importantly for us, where do brands fit in?
BuzzFeed, a Facebook Live paid partner, made the initial record in April with 800k people tuned in at its peak and more than 10 million views to date when two employees blew up a watermelon using rubber bands…placed one by one…it took 45 minutes…talk about delayed gratification.
So if you had to think of something that would blow this record out of the water what would it be? Beyoncé and Jay-Z playing with Blue Ivy? Donald Trump speaking candidly? No my friends the current record of 146 million video views is held by none other than the mother of two from Texas, Candace Payne, who bought herself a Chewbacca mask. Her laugh is infectious- a must watch if you haven’t already. https://www.facebook.com/candaceSpayne/videos/10209653193067040/
How can we get our brands on Chewbacca Mom’s level? Here are four ways I think Facebook Live can be successfully leveraged by brands:
- Access Exclusives– The bread and butter of this phenomenon, unrestricted access behind-the-scenes, delivering true transparency- think where does your luggage go on Qantas’ Ready for Take Off.
- Share Announcements/Reveals– Crucial moments for brands to grow buzz for new products, collaborations, tentpoles, first looks and more. This week in the states McDonald’s revealed three oil paintings in honour of National Hamburger Day; “The Beefy Gastronaut” (Quarter Pounder with cheese) the “Burger Brawn,” (Big Mac) and the “Beefy Peaks” (burgers in front of Mountains).
- Host Q&As– Opportunity for engagement and answers in real time- building a relationship with your consumers. A chance for interactive customer support (picture a Telstra help session).
- Scale Events– Extend viewership of events to consumers that couldn’t be there (red carpets, after parties, performances) Airbnb broadcast live from an activation at the World Premiere of The Jungle Book in front of a custom treehouse built for the occasion.
AdAge states that Facebook Live is averaging about 3 billion video views daily. There is a sea of people waiting to get their peak-behind-the-curtain.