It’s no secret that digital marketing is now a major factor in sales and business. If you aren’t already engaged seriously in a digital marketing campaign, as a small business you have no time to waste. Fortunately, it’s not too late. Live streaming is an excellent entry into the digital environment. Even for those new to live streaming can succeed, and all it takes is diligence and some forethought.
5 Steps to Make Your Live Streaming Content Awesome
- Consider Your Audience
- Prepare an Outline
- Create a Setting
- Deliver Naturally
- Share and Repurpose
Creating content for the digital marketplace is relatively inexpensive and accessible to both small business and their audiences. Beyond that, the content created can be easily repurposed for other digital options. This means entrepreneurs can create once, and continue to reap benefits from that single effort.
To start, understand that the digital marketplace includes a number of options. Commercials delivered via social media sites, blog posts that get suggested via a search engine, followers and fans sharing content, podcasts, and much more. The number one benefit of live streaming for your small business is that its content that you can then use in other ways. Entrepreneurs are doing so much for their businesses that any opportunity to reduce the time it takes to effectively market is welcomed. By taking a little time to make a plan is an investment that will make a huge impact for your success.
5 Steps to Make Your Live Streaming Content Awesome
1. Consider Your Audience
It can feel overwhelming when thinking about how many avenues there are, and how to place content in all the places you can. However, that kind of thinking is outdated. Before the internet, marketing was about getting everywhere, and interrupting potential consumers, hence the term, “commercial interruption.” The content was still important but it was secondary to having a widespread reach. The idea was, and still is, to appear to buyers at every opportunity.
That’s still the goal, but the method has changed. Now, consumers have infinitely more control over what marketing content they will consume, and how they will consume it. We’ve never had this level of customization before. As such, marketing has shifted. Those businesses that exhaust resources trying to be everywhere often see very little return on their marketing investment. A big reason for this is that the content has to be so general that it can include all audiences. Today, consumers give a cold shoulder to content that they do not personally connect with. The result is that the content is everywhere, but all who see it don’t care.
Those companies that instead choose to narrow their focus to a particular audience, and then create marketing content that really resonates with that audience spend less time and resources on creating the content, and getting it where it can be seen. The result is that a small number of people see it, but those people who do are much more likely to care and to buy.
It sometimes feels counter-intuitive, but this is the reality. We entrepreneurs want to share our products and services with absolutely everyone, and we are tempted to try. This is a rabbit hole that the smart small business owner will avoid.
Get to know your audience first and foremost. This will be the groundwork that will create longterm success. Success that you can build on to bring your products and services to more people who will value your work, and create business momentum.
Decide on the demographics and psychographics of your ideal buyers and then discover where they spend their time while online. Find out what social media sites they frequent, what they do while they are online, and most importantly, what content they respond to. This will inform your next steps in deciding what to create for marketing content, and where you will put it so your ideal buyer can see it.
2. Prepare an Outline
It’s important to no over-plan your live streaming content. Audiences today are tired of the artificial and play-acted content of the earlier generation of marketing. They want to see real people, doing actual things, and even making mistakes. The genuine human in front of the camera will generate more followers and buyers than someone who rigidly follows a script.
Again, this can feel counter-intuitive. We want to plan it all out: know exactly what we will say before we take the spotlight. It can help you feel more confident and less intimidated. But, this often backfires. Instead of really getting your audience to hear your message, and to respond to it, they ignore it.
So, put together an outline of what you want to discuss. And it can be almost anything:
- How-to instructions: put together an outline of each step you will cover, and a short note about what to deliver at each step.
- Demonstration of product: show your audience how your product works, so they can feel confident when they buy it that they can use it themselves.
- Reviews from clients: showing the reviews your business has received, or even bringing a client into the live stream with you to give their own opinion about their experience can be powerful. Have some questions to ask a live client to elicit the information your audience would like to know about working with you.
- Interviews with relevant experts: this can be a great opportunity to share with your audience someone that they would like to follow. You are providing a service in not only getting the content of an expert out to your community, but the audience of the expert can now find you and your business.
- Behind-the-scenes with employees and staff: these can be extremely powerful for consumers who want to feel good about the company they choose to work with. Seeing employees who are happy in their work means the company is being run by a good person.
- Informative presentations: these do have the pitfall of being boring or alienating. Take care that when you go to live stream a purely instructive video that its well-paced, and remains relatable. Some entrepreneurs choose to make several shorter instructive videos, or create one that gives an overview, and then invite their audience to check out other content that includes more detailed information.
- Live Q&A sessions: inviting your audience to actively engage with you during a live stream is an ideal way of really connecting with your audience, as well as learning more about what they are looking for in content. However, don’t just sit there and wait for someone to ask a question. Instead, start with answering one that you feel isn’t well addressed already and then let your audience guide you from there.
This is the happy middle ground between being over-prepared and completely winging it. Jumping into a live stream with no idea about what you want to do is also not recommended. It often makes you look unprofessional and to a potential buyer, they might feel that you won’t be able to adequately help them.
3. Create a Setting
The location you live stream from will have an impact on your audience. If you’re outside, you need to know if there is a breeze that is interacting with your microphone. If you are in a crowded place, it might make it hard to hear what you’re saying, and you also need to consider the privacy of those people walking around you while you stream.
The “shaky cam” effect has been a little overplayed. Don’t do it unless there is a valid reason for your camera to be shaking while you live stream, such as while in the car or walking around. Get a tripod to hold your camera while you stream.
Also remember to look at what’s in your background. Dirty clothes, an unmade bed, or dishes are not professional. While being natural and sincere is important, you also want to ensure your potential clients feel like you will still take care of them as a professional.
4. Deliver Naturally
A small business owner is the face of their business. Appearing on camera might not be something you are comfortable with, but its inevitable and invaluable. Later on you might be able to hire a spokesperson to take on the role for you, but when you are starting out, you need to show your audience the person behind the invoice.
Marketing has come from a world where it was impersonal. By incorporating the actual person in the business, buyers are more likely to remember and feel better about working with you. The very normal way of talking while live streaming often humanizes your business and creates more rapport with the people who are the most in need of your products and services.
5. Share and Repurpose
A live stream is now content that can be used in other places, and can be easily shared if your community likes the work. Your audience has their own social circles, and likely they know someone else who would like what you’ve done.
You can also put that content into a video library on your website, and make it free or something that is only available to paying clients. You can turn the audio into a podcast and publish it. You can take a snippet and create a commercial for Facebook or YouTube. You could even take all the funny mistakes and publish a “blooper reel” that your audience would enjoy.
Live Streaming for Digital Marketing
You are in business because you really believe that what you can provide will make a huge difference to your customers and clients.
You can only do that if your marketing content is being consumed by an audience that will enjoy and pay attention to it.
Live streaming is a straight-forward option to add to your digital marketing efforts that will help your business thrive.