In addition to guest posting on the UpCity blog, SociallyIn is featured as one of the Top Social Marketing Agencies in Birmingham. Check out their profile here.

Did you know that people on Facebook comment on live content 10 times more than an uploaded video?

That’s a fact that your small business can’t ignore. Facebook Live was introduced in 2016 and allows you to share live content with followers and friends on Facebook. The idea was to increase engagements with your fans and connect instantly and it has done just that!

Instagram also has a live feature called Instagram Live. This feature was also introduced in 2016 and once you were done going live, no one could see your video. This has changed since then and you can save your live video and keep it up after you go off live. You can go live by yourself or with a friend! You can even “request” to join in when your friend goes live by themselves. Hint: This could be a wonderful collaboration tool. Both Facebook and Instagram Live can be used for your small business social media plan and the two have plenty of benefits.

You may ask why you can’t just post an Instagram story or uploading a Facebook video instead of using the live feature. Both of these approaches should be intermixed in your social media plan.  The benefit of Live video compared to other video forms is that it feels real and in the present and well, it is! While it is planned and you know what event you are promoting, there is an aspect of it that just feels authentic and spontaneous to the users watching the stream.

3 Benefits of Going Live

  1. Engagement: Let your fans engage with the real you! Stay true to your brand. Ask questions and let your customers tell you what they think!
  2. Unique ContentDon’t get me wrong, you want to plan for as much of your live streaming that you can. When you are having an event at your small business, some things you can’t predict, leaving room for completely unique content. This content is who you are as a brand!
  3. Cost Effective: You want videos and videos are great! Videos can also cost a lot and may not be the best use of the money your small business does have. Going Facebook Live means all you really need is a smartphone, and most of us have that already. It can be the most cost effective way to promote a giveaway or event that you are having!

There are a few businesses that I have seen doing live content well. One of my favorites is SocialyFly. You can check out their Instagram here.  They have made it an entire event each week on Wednesday’s at 10am with the hashtag #SocialLIVE. That’s pretty creative if you ask me. The content is fun and completely resonates with their audience.

Socialfly

Not only does Social Fly go live, but they also promote that they are going live beforehand. This a very important step to ensure success!

On a smaller scale, SociallyIn also goes live on Facebook on Thursday’s in a special called “Cereal Creatives.” This is promoted through Facebook posts, Instagram posts, and Instagram stories. You want to make sure your audience KNOWS that you will be going live so they engage with you!

SociallyIn

At 10am, SociallyIn gets together to eat cereal and talk about everything social media and creative! This is a great time to get involved and ask questions you may have or give your input on campaigns that this crew is talking about.

Martha Stewart

Do you know who else is doing great things with Facebook Live content? Martha Stewart. From party planning ideas to cooking, you can see it all Live from Martha Stewart. She reminds viewers about the products she is offering at the time and typically includes a Q&A portion at the end of her broadcast. It’s pretty neat!

It seems easy enough, right? But how does your small business start integrating live content into your small business plan.

  1. Take some time to write down every part of your business that makes it unique. Take a look at what you wrote. This will help tremendously! 
  2. Write down upcoming events for the entire year on your calendar that you could plan a live event around. This helps if you are a visual person and gives you a different way to look at what’s going on with your business. Does your business have a birthday coming up? Could you give away something? 
  3. PLAN! You want to know who will be in charge of going live and have a general idea of what you are going to say. Identify the employee in your small business that enjoys talking to people and iscomfortable in front of a camera. Ask that person if they are interested in going live! The most comfortable you are, the more people will enjoy watching.
  4. Schedule the time you will go live and promote it PRIOR to going live. Know ahead of time if you will give away something at this Live Event or if you will be answering questions that your audience has on a product. It is up to you how you use this time.

Engage with your audience and the consumer you wish to attract. Just interact and have fun! Overall, keep it real and don’t be afraid to fail. Live content has the ability to make your small business more personable and benefit you in the end.

 

Lizzie Headshot
Lizzie Earley
Community Coordinator at Sociallyin

Sociallyin is a social media marketing agency located in the heart of Alabama. Located in Birmingham, Alabama —Sociallyin represents the creative and strategic social media marketing side of the South and beyond. Sociallyin services a wide range of clients in a variety of industries. Our mission: To create lasting connections through interactive engagements by connecting people and ideas through strategic online communications.