Live-Streaming Video Starts To Explode

What Happened
As Facebook makes a strong push for media owners to use its Live Video feature to broadcast on its platform, live-streaming is quickly moving up on the priority lists of publishers and content creators. Last Friday, BuzzFeed scored almost three million viewers on Facebook with its live-stream of a simplistic-yet-captivating experiment of putting rubber bands on a watermelon until it burst from the tightening force. The end result was a glorious watermelon explosion as well as a victory for Buzzfeed as the live stream attracted 808,000 concurrent viewers at its peak and 2.8 million viewers overall.  

In related news, Al Roker, famed TV personality and host of NBC’s Today, has launched a digital video network that produces content for live-streaming platforms, including Facebook, Twitter’s Periscope, YouTube, and YouNow. Roker is no stranger to live-streaming as he hosted a live cooking series on Meerkat last year.

What Brands Need To Do
As an emerging medium, live-streaming has been gaining momentum recently and increasingly drawing mainstream audiences. Last week, Periscope hit a milestone of 200 million live broadcasts since its launch one year ago. Facebook’s Live Video feature officially rolled out to all users in early February. Some early-adopting brands such as GE and Calvin Klein have followed the eyeballs and started live-streaming on those platforms. For brands seeking to engage with online audiences in real time, Buzzfeed’s fun experiment provides a good example in how brands can use simple, creative premises to devise compelling, suspenseful content that captures consumer attention.

Check back later this week for our coverage of Facebook’s annual F8 developer conference, where Live Video will most likely be one of the products that Facebook highlights.


Source: The Verge and Variety

Header image courtesy of  BuzzFeed’s Facebook Video

Facebook Accelerates Live Video Push With New Features

What Happened
Facebook continues to build out Live Video as it adds a variety of new features to its live-streaming product today and boosts their positioning in the News Feed. Users will now be able to discover public live-streams via a dedicated Live Video tab on their mobile app, taking the prominent spot where Messenger used to be. Other new features include live Reactions, filters, and the ability to post live videos to private groups, allowing for more interactions and customizations on the live-streams. In order to attract more content creators to its live-streaming platform, Facebook is reportedly paying publishers to post a certain number of live videos each month.

What Brands Need To Do
Even though Facebook’s Live Video does not currently carry ads, some early adopting brands, such as GE, are already using it to broadcast sponsored events or branded content. The new additions of customization and discovery features should help attract more users and content creators to Live Video, giving Facebook a considerable boost over other live-streaming platforms such as YouNow and Twitter’s Periscope. For brands wishing to connect with audiences in real time, it is time to try Facebook’s Live Video.

To read more on how brands can reach the fragmented audiences on streaming platforms, please check out the Appified TV section in our Outlook 2016.


Source: Facebook Newsroom

Header image courtesy of Facebook Newsroom

How GE Is Using Live-Streaming To Humanize Its Brand

What Happened
GE is pulling out all the stops for live-streaming, as the mega-conglomerate hopes to engage consumers with interesting narratives and humanize its industrial brand image. The company has experimented with several live-streaming platforms, such as Meerkat when it first came out. It also started using Periscope the day it launched and ran a couple campaigns on the Twitter-owned live-streaming platform, including the “Drone Week” campaign last summer. Most recently, GE launched its Pi Day campaign via Facebook’s Live Video, the newest of the emerging live-streaming platforms, showcasing the different applications of Pi in GE’s engineering.

What Brands Need To Do
According to GE’s global digital marketing manager Sydney Williams, live video content lends a very authentic and human feel to brands, which is especially appreciated by a younger Millennial audience. A lot of branded videos often end up a little too polished and over-produced, and live video provides a good medium to remedy that. For brands looking to experiment with live-streaming, they should be prepared on the technical front to ensure a smooth broadcast, but also willing to roll with the punches and embrace the unexpected.


Source: Marketing Land

Facebook To Add Support For TV-Quality Live-Streams

What Happened
Facebook is planning to add support for studio-quality live broadcasting to its live-streaming feature to make it more appealing to content creators and publishers. Previously, Facebook’s Live Video only allowed a single smartphone or tablet to stream content. With this change, capable content creators like TV networks would be able to plug Facebook’s live-stream into their broadcast control rooms, allowing for live content that has multiple camera angles, remote segments from correspondents, and, in general, higher production value. Facebook is reportedly going to announce this new capability during its upcoming annual F8 developers conference in April.

What Brands Need To Do
Facebook has attracted a number of publishers and media owners, including MLB, E! Network, and TMZ, to create live content on its platform since it rolled out the live-streaming feature in December. Now with this added support, content creators will be able to leverage their production prowess to create more polished live content. Brands should consider working with content creators to develop ads or sponsored live content to take advantage of the new tools.


Source: Digiday

Publishers Are Broadcasting With Facebook’s Live Video

What Happened
Following Facebook’s wide release of its live-streaming feature Live Video, some early-adopting publishers and media owners are jumping on board and creating original content for the fast-growing platform. A few weeks ago, MTV Germany became the first TV channel to air a live show on Facebook with the launch of MTV+You, a 16-part weekly talk show featuring celebrity guests talking about entertainment news, gossip, and trends. Last week, celebrity gossip site TMZ reported that its live shows on Facebook are getting between 75,000 and 100,000 live viewers. Similarly, The Daily Beast announced today that it is launching two new daily live shows on Facebook, aiming to foster a long-term relationship with readers with routine video consumption.

Market Impact
Starting with Meerkat’s breakthrough at SXSW last year, live-streaming has seen significant growth  thanks to the likes of Twitter and Facebook coming out with their own live broadcasting features. With Live Video, brands can leverage Facebook’s massive reach to acquire a new audience, and the immediacy of content and the relatively low production costs of live-streaming content make it an appealing emerging platform for brands to explore.


MLB To Amplify Spring Training With Snapchat and Facebook’s Live Video

What Happened
The Major League Baseball (MLB) is embracing emerging media platforms to amplify the reach of its content. The league announced Friday that as part of a multi-year content deal with popular messaging app Snapchat, it will host a “Snapchat Day” later this month for its Spring Training games around the country, giving fans behind-the-scenes looks. Similarly, some teams, including the San Francisco Giants, Detroit Tigers, and Los Angeles Dodgers, are also experimenting with daily live broadcasts on Facebook to engage fans and drum up excitement using the Live Video feature Facebook just released for all users at the end of January.

What Brands Need To Do
The MLB is a leading force in bringing content into new media platforms to make it more accessible. Its internet and interactive branch, MLB Advanced Media, provides the backend infrastructure for a variety of OTT streaming services, including HBO Now, the WWE, WatchESPN, CBS Sportsline, and, of course, its own streaming service MLB.TV.  Now, the league is encouraging its players to embrace Snapchat and livestreaming as a way to bring fans closer to the game, something that most brands can learn a thing or two from.


Sources: Geekwire & Digiday

Facebook Tweaks News Feed To Prioritize Live Videos

What Happened
Following CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s remark last week about “planning to make livestreaming a priority at Facebook,” the company has started its push for the new Live Video feature, which enables users to broadcast themselves to their friends right from the Facebook app, in real time. The social network has tweaked its News Feed ranking algorithm to give Live Video posts a higher spot in the News Feed so that more people will see those livestreams. In addition, Facebook is reportedly offering celebrities up to six figures to use Live Video, as it looks to leverage star power to drum up interest in its Periscope competitor.

What Brands Need To Do
Facebook’s push for Live Video dovetails nicely with the company’s recent efforts in building out its video products and vying for video ad dollars. For brands, this presents a new channel to reach a mobile audience in real time with branded livestreams or sponsored live events. As livestreaming continues to evolve as an emerging media platform, we expect to see more brand opportunities and content formats arise.


Sources: Digiday & Re/Code

Facebook Rolling Out Live-Streaming For Everyone

What Happened
After testing its live-streaming feature within celebrity Pages for about 4 months, Facebook finally started rolling out its answer to Meerkat and Periscope to all users last Thursday. Named Live Video, the new feature is now available to a small number of iOS users in the United States, with plans to expand to Android and more users soon. Users will be given the option to save a recording of their broadcasts on their timelines when it’s over.

What Brands Need To Do
Facebook’s vast user base could give this new livestreaming feature a leg up and capture a large number of Facebook users who haven’t been previously exposed to live-streaming. It will provide brands with a new channel to connect with fans in real time, as well as opportunities for sponsoring social influencers or broadcasting branded events, such as what Guess recently did with AOL’s little-known live-streaming app Kanvas. Its capability to automatically save a live broadcast to a timeline should also help brands easily create some lasting video content from their live-streaming efforts.


Source: Digiday