Peting, who manages Motorola Solutions' social media presence in North America and co-leads the company's Global Social Media Center of Excellence, makes a point of fully preparing every element of a live broadcast from conception to execution. Before going live, Peting follows a simple, but crucial, list of action items to ensure that her video subjects are well-prepared and that her audience is ready and watching before she hits the "Go Live" button.
Peting, who will be speaking about live broadcasting at PR News' Visual Storytelling Boot Camp on June 22 in Chicago, shares the checklist she uses to ensure her broadcasts are truly ready to go live.
✔️ Draft an Outline
Determine the goal of your broadcast: Are you building awareness around an issue? Educating viewers? Increasing attendance or building hype for an upcoming event? Develop an outline to help you accomplish that goal via your broadcast. For example, if you plan to stream an expert interview, you should identify an interviewer and subject, draft a list interview questions and note a broadcast date, time and location in your outline.
✔️ Rehearse the Talent
Schedule one or more practice sessions with your subjects so that both you and your talent feel comfortable before going live. Film your practice sessions with a camera or mobile device’s camera app so you can practice stop-and-start cues as well as interacting with viewer comments and engagements. Use your personal social media accounts to test live starts and stops and correct any internet connection issues. If possible, practice in the same location you plan to broadcast from.
Immerse yourself in content and measurement strategy for social platforms like Snapchat, Instagram and Facebook and learn how other communicators are employing visual storytelling techniques at PR News' Visual Storytelling Boot Camp and Digital How-To Conference, June 22-23 in Chicago.
✔️ Promote in Advance
Your live broadcast is an event. If you want viewers to watch and engage with your live broadcast, then you need to promote it. Although social media is magical—and Facebook's algorithm gives live content a special boost—it is not the field of dreams. If you stream it, they don’t always watch. In the weeks leading up to your broadcast, make sure to post regular updates and sneak peaks (perhaps a blooper reel from your practice sessions?) on all of your brand's social channels and send out regular email blasts so your audience is ready and waiting when you go live.
✔️ Optimize for Search and News Feeds
In your broadcast's video summary, describe the live event briefly and include relevant handles, hashtags and locations. This will make your video searchable and more likely to show up in viewers' news feeds. Some social networks also give you options to narrow your target audience, send push notifications to your followers, share your stream to other social networks and save your broadcast to your device to watch and/or download later. (This is useful for repurposing and reposting live content following the broadcast.)
✔️ Encourage Live Interaction
Before you go live, remind your live video host that broadcast viewers are live, too, and that they may engage with him/her during the broadcast. To encourage live interaction, have your subject greet viewers throughout the broadcast and ask the viewers questions that encourage engagement, like “What city are you watching this broadcast from today?” “What is your favorite feature of this product/solution/service?” Or, “Would you like to know how you can learn more about this product/solution/service?” A good host makes everyone feel like a part of the conversation.
Follow Daniella: @dnpeting