Today, Facebook releases their live broadcasting feature to all iPhone users.
“Facebook Live” was released last August, but only to verified Facebook pages through the celebrity-exclusive Mentions app. This was done to compete with the sky-rocketing success of the live-broadcasting environment, competing with apps like Periscope, Meerkat, Blab.im, and YouNow among others in the space.
The goal was always to release their feature to personal accounts, but the roll-out had to be strategic so that Facebook’s servers and platforms could handle it.
In late December, Facebook rolled out the feature to a select few personal accounts while also testing their other video features. As of this morning, Facebook Live has been rolled out to all personal users on their mobile app on iPhones, (soon to be on Android, too, we’re sure).
Facebook video is dominating the market with users watching over 100M hours of video every day! That’s an average of more than 11,000 years of footage every single day.
Periscope’s rapidly-growing 5 million users have been leading the market, but they’re nothing compared to the potential of Facebook’s user base, which numbers more than 1 billion people worldwide.
However, people might still prefer the community aspect of using an app like Periscope. Where Facebook’s inclusive platform is sometimes composed of ex-eleventh-grade friends and your grandmother, Periscope and Blab offer highly-engaged communities. Regardless, other apps may see a dramatic blow to their user base, due to Facebook Live now being available to everyone.
How Do I Broadcast?
To start a broadcast, simply pull up your status bar from the Facebook app. At the bottom right, next to the check-in option, select the icon of a person with two halos around it. A screen will pop up in which you can write a short description about what you’re broadcasting. Use the button at the top-right with two circular arrows to flip your camera between front to forward-facing, depending on if you want people to see you or something in front of you.
Just like any other post, you can choose which of your friends see the broadcast, or if you’d like it to be public. Choose how you’d like to hold the camera, as filming can be landscape or portrait. Then be bold and hit the “Go Live” button; now you’re on.
How Do I Get People to Watch my Video?
One best practice for filming a Facebook live video would be to let people in advance when you’re planning to go live.
Tell close friends and family members through text or a Facebook post, so they can hop on and view you.
One of the most valuable ways to get people to view is to tag people in your description, so they’ll be notified when you’re posting. Then, once someone’s in, make sure to invite them to click the “subscribe” button at the top of the screen, so they’ll be notified of your future live videos.
Also, when crafting your description, remember that this is going to be a Facebook post for people to see even after you’re live, so don’t skimp on it. Say something that will catch people’s attention enough to get them to view live or to replay it.
Keep in mind…
Lighting is a key factor in all live video. Make sure it’s not too dark or that there’s too much harsh direct light. The same goes for your sound. Make sure there aren’t too many background noises or distractions. Your internet connection is key. If you have poor connectivity, it could result in your feed being distorted or cut off entirely.
Make sure that you have a plan for what you’re going to say, if you’re going to be speaking. Come in with maybe at least 2-3 good points.
Lastly, don’t forget that there are real people there. You don’t have to say hello to everyone who joins, but acknowledge questions and thank viewers for watching and always give them a reason to come back, by providing value with your videos. .