How to Use Facebook Live for Your Business
How to Use Facebook Live Video for Your Business
Facebook Live can seem relatively simple. It’s free, it’s on a platform almost everyone uses, and the developers make it pretty easy to figure out the basics. But as business owners, we’re doing ourselves a huge disservice by not studying and utilizing such a strong tool that again, is FREE.
So how do we do this? Bryan and Loren did a solo episode on Facebook Live to break it down for us. Before we dive into all of that, let’s hear about what they’re obsessed with this week.
Loren: Fun - Almonds coated in coconut, dipped in dark chocolate. You’re missing out if you don’t tune in for the audio of Bryan trying to wrap his mind around this. Business - Hootsuite.
Bryan: Fun - Chernobyl, the new HBO show Business - Facebook Live!
Loren kicked off the discussion by filling us in on the latest Facebook Live stats, which tell us that over ¼ of the world’s population has tuned into a FB Live. Let’s just take a minute and sit in the fact that we have the ability, literally at our fingertips, to reach that many people. This knowledge alone can help us to reframe our strategy surrounding this platform. What are some of the unspoken rules surrounding a successful Facebook Live?
Play by the platform’s rules. Even educating ourselves on the most basic algorithms can be a huge help to getting our video in front of the most eyes. Luckily, GRX has you covered in this research. Keep following Bryan’s Free Tip Fridays and listening to the podcast to be in the know on all of the latest tips and tricks.
Utilize Facebook Groups. This is a great tool to promote your business to a very specific group of people who have already willingly raised their hand to follow your content. By studying their pain points and needs, we can have a more readily available list of topics that we know will land on interested eyes.
In our modern mindset of hiding behind a computer or a phone and relying on texting, status updates, or other seemingly low-risk written content, engaging via live video can feel very daunting. We get it, but we also know that as business owners who want to be successful in this digital age, we have to stand out. One of the best ways to do that is by learning practices to feel confident that our Facebook Live can and will go off without a hitch. How do we do this? Loren lists out her best content strategies:
Utilize something new and exciting that’s happening in or around your business. New product unveiling? New feature? New store opening? All of these would be great ways to engage with live video.
Showcasing behind the scenes. This can be anything from a how-it’s-made video to a process video for a service. Giving customers and clients a glimpse into how we serve them is going to make them feel like an insider and give them more connection to our business and ultimately, build loyalty.
Harnessing the power of holidays and seasons. Reframing holidays and thinking of them as opportunities to relate to our audience using an event that we are all planning for and working towards can bring in killer results. An example of this would be a client of ours who recently did a Facebook Live on healthy alternatives to Easter baskets. For the most part, we were all mindful of Easter, and that company made the most of that thought process to get in front of their audience.
Do interviews with current clients and customers. People will relate with them because they are in their shoes, and if we have someone already utilizing our business and telling our audience why they should hire us, we’re going to have more impact than if we said the same things ourselves.
Another fear that we know a lot of professionals have surrounding live video or really video featuring themselves in general is production issues. We can all feel ill-prepared or equipped to do this and do it well, so we just don’t do it at all. Bryan and Loren both had some great tips for us to overcome these fears and feel prepared for a great video.
Don’t feel overwhelmed with production. We don’t have to have the highest-tech setup to produce great content. In fact, Bryan and Loren mentioned just a few things that we really need:
A lapel mic to plug into a phone. These can be found for around $20 on Amazon and they will raise quality significantly.
To be mindful of the surroundings. We should make sure we’re in a space that makes sense for our video. If it’s just us talking, we need to be in a place that is visually appealing and not too noisy and distracting. If it’s an event that we’re capturing, making sure that our audience can hear us is key. The list goes on, but this is a super simple way to make sure our audience is seeing what we want them to see and is not distracted by everything else.
To try not to actually hold the phone if we’re using it to film. Basic mounts are inexpensive and can ensure that our video is stable and not shaky and therefore difficult to watch.
To make sure that IF WE HAVE TO hold our phone, we’re holding it at a higher angle so that the audience is getting a more appealing view of us or whoever is the focus on our video.
A good internet connection. This is imperative to retaining the audience that may give us the clicks we so desperately seek. If we have a great title and give a good teaser to our content, but our video is freezing or spotty, people will sign off so quickly,and we certainly don’t want that.
To invest in a webcam to up the ante with video quality. Going live from a phone or iPad (use the rear-facing camera for best quality there!) is fine to get us started, but saving up if necessary to spring for a $70-$100 webcam is really going to make us look super professional.
Be engaging and exciting. We need to remember that we are coming across as much less loud and crazy than we think we’re acting. We don’t want to be obnoxious, of course, but we’re certainly going to have to amp up the volume, so to speak, to pull in those viewers and keep them around.
Understand that we’re never going to look and sound the way we want to, and we just need to get over it. Our audience wants our true authentic self, and while we can amp up our excitement a bit, we don’t have to feel like we’re being fake to look and sound like the perfect image in our heads.
“One of the great things about Facebook Live is that is not supposed to be perfect. You’re going live; you don’t need to worry about if you stumble over your words. That’s totally fine, like people understand what ‘live’ means, but that doesn’t mean that you get [away with] not preparing.”
— LOREN LEWIS
So without putting too much pressure on what can already be a stressful and scary thing to get used to doing, how can we prep for the best Live possible that brings value to our audience?
Make sure our topic is interesting. As Loren says, “Don’t go live to talk about your favorite shampoo.” We want to make sure our topic hits a pain point with our audience and will keep them watching throughout the whole production.
Think about what we want to say and make some notes. We have found that bulleted lists are the best for show-prep in these situations. It keeps us on target for our message without sounding scripted. It also allows us to improvise and engage better and enables us to include responses to live questions in our presentation.
On that note, we shouldn’t try to memorize our presentations or recite lines. Along the same lines would be reading from a script with the paper in front of our face. Just follow that bulleted list and we should be fine :).
Be relatable. If we come across as polished and perfect like we’ve prepared a press release, our audience won’t be able to relate to us on a personal level, which is the key to good sales in the first place.
Bryan and Loren want to finish out this message by driving home the importance of repurposing our Facebook Lives into lots of pieces of content that we can use over time. This is the bread and butter of the team. We LOVE to use our clients’ actual voices and faces and messages to turn around and reach more people by meeting them where they’re at and showing them what they want to see. We want to create meaningful interactions all the way around with quotes, graphics, audiograms, and more across multiple platforms. Like Bryan says: “If you have a message, get it out there. And try to do it in a way that’s going to resonate with people, so it will be in different forms…. People use different platforms for different things at different times.”
Premier Feature: This is a great tool that helps you showcase a video as if it were live, when it’s actually filmed ahead of time. This allows you to engage with your audience in the comments and be available to follow up in real-time since you are not focused on producing the content in real-time. There are a lot of nuances involved with premiering a “live” video, and again, GRX has your back on all of the hacks to be successful.
Watch Party Feature: Facebook is give an insane organic reach to those utilizing this tool. When you click that little button to host a watch party, way more people will be notified than if you’re simply sharing a link or posting written content.
BeLive or another Live software: These give you the ability to schedule your lives, notify your audience, and create events for your Facebook Live within Facebook. These are great to get more engagement, build excitement, and get more viewership.