— March 6, 2018
With the recent update to Facebook’s News Feed, owners of small- & medium-sized businesses may wonder if Facebook is worth their time and effort.
Capitalizing on Facebook’s huge user base—2 billion & counting—requires (1) understanding the latest changes to Facebook; (2) developing a new, video-driven marketing strategy; & (3) employing supporting tools & technologies.
Learn more about these three elements so that you can create engaging videos that attract an audience, generate sales, & build customer loyalty.
3 Ways Facebook’s Changes Affect Your Business
A few weeks ago, Mark Zuckerberg said he plans to transform Facebook from passive experiences to enriching social interactions.
That means people, not brands, will get preference in the News Feed.
All is not lost—you can maintain your Facebook presence by posting content that sparks “back-and-forth discussion.”
To achieve the result, keep these three items in mind when revamping your Facebook activities.
- Organic Reach. Organic reach will continue to decline, demanding a new Facebook strategy that entails when, what, & how you post (free or paid).
- Clever Engagement. Facebook will demote posts that employ click-bait engagement tactics. Avoid the penalty with clever calls to action, such as asking viewers to tag friends who’d be interested in your content.
- Live Video. Facebook already emphasizes video. Expect greater emphasis given to live video since it spawns conversations, reactions, & shares.
5 Ideas to Use Facebook Live for Business Growth
You might be skeptical of live video’s role in the marketing mix, which is understandable.
But consider these persuasive data points: Animoto, a video platform, reports that 49% of people surveyed engaged with branded videos on Facebook.
64% of those respondents also said watching a marketing video on Facebook influenced their buying decision.
You can achieve similar outcomes with the following five ideas.
- Ask Me Anything. A live Ask Me Anything or Q&A session introduces people to your brand & its mission. Make the show recurring & at a specific time so people know when to tune in.
- Tutorials. Use Facebook Live to offer live tutorials. Doing so attracts new viewers (brand awareness), convinces people to buy (sales), & delights existing customers (loyalty).
- Live Tours. Get people off their phones & into your store by giving a live video tour. Note your location’s unique charms, from the products & architecture to the employees.
- Event Coverage. When hosting or attending an event, go beyond live tweeting. Use Facebook Live to get people to interact with you in real life & on Facebook at the same time.
- Product Announcements. Use Facebook Live to introduce new products to the market. Don’t be smarmy about it; instead, think of the video as a digital red carpet.
5 Tools to Craft Quality Facebook Live Videos
The above ideas work great—if supported by tools & technology.
The five tools included below are for Facebook Live broadcasts recorded on a laptop or desktop computer.
- High-Speed Internet. A quality standard-definition Facebook Live broadcast requires an upload speed upwards of 10 Mbps. This speed is impossible to achieve with a dial-up connection, so if you want to livestream regularly, you should explore your cable and fiber internet options.
- Lights. If recording indoors, it may be necessary to purchase some soft boxes or umbrellas. These lights mitigate a washed-out, fluorescent look in your videos.
- Webcam. Many computers come with a built-in webcam, but the device can produce a less-than-stellar broadcast. A better idea is to use an external webcam or, if possible, a dedicated video camera connected to your computer with an HDMI cable.
- Microphone. Besides employing a standalone webcam, you should invest in a quality USB microphone. Remember to add a set of earphones if you need to cut down on background noise and feedback.
- Software. Some brands use software, usually OBS Studio or Wirecast, to help with editing and scheduling. Some organizations also use Skype or Zoom to conduct interviews, & then send the raw footage to OBS Studio or Wirecast.
If you are recording video on your smartphone, you will need two more tools: a tripod & a portable battery.
Livestreaming eats your phone’s life, & it’s hard to keep a camera steady when holding it in your hand.
Invest in a tripod & external charger to guarantee an excellent recording & viewing experience.
Don’t forget about these free tools to create videos ads on Facebook.
Adapt your Facebook strategy to incorporate live video, & you may see more viewers and sales than ever before.
How are you integrating Facebook Live into your marketing strategy? Tell us in the comments below!