Live streaming has certainly grown in popularity over the last five years due to massive increases in internet connection speed as well as the near-constant connectedness of audiences via their smart devices.
Having been in the live streaming industry prior to all of this, we’ve become quite familiar with how folks talk about live streaming, and it seems like there are a few myths that are very typical of people looking to hold their very first live stream.
We’d love to share our expertise with you here to help you understand the benefits of live streaming just like we do!
1. Live streaming your event will decrease in-person attendance
While it might seem logical that people would prefer to stay home and watch your live stream rather than attend your event in person, studies show this isn’t the case.
In fact, live streaming has been shown to increase in-person attendance.
According to Digitell, 30% of people who watch a live stream of an event will attend the same event in person the following year.
We watch our clients grow their events in subsequent years after live streaming all the time because it gives their audiences a glimpse into why they wouldn’t want to miss the event and helps their brands and events gain the exposure they need to grow.
Coachella is a great example of this; after they live streamed their 2011 festival, they turned around and sold out their 2012 festival in record time — 3 hours!
Our founder and pioneering live streaming IT guru Aaron Booker always says…
“We can’t get you more ticket sales by live streaming this year, but if you do it, we can get you more butts in seats next year!”
2. Live streaming is too expensive
Live streaming your event can be done cheaply with your cell phone camera or professionally with a crew that will provide broadcast quality coverage of your event.
Whichever route you decide to take, the value of the live streaming is unquestionable.
When you consider that your online audience may be three or 4 or more times the in-person audience when the event is live, AND create even more reach for those who couldn’t tune in live watch the recording on demand, you can start to see the value in investing in your live stream production.
At the end of your event, not only do you have the live stream online for people to watch on demand, but if your event was professionally streamed, you should also have a high resolution recording of the entire thing as well. This footage can be used to make stylized recap videos, bite sized social media postings and added to your content library to pull bits out of for future videos, commercials and more.
3. Broadcasting your event on Facebook or Youtube is the same as having it played on TV
This is a common idea I find that gets unearthed when I work with clients who want to Facebook live stream their event.
Live streaming has a world of potential to connect you, your brand, your ideas, your contributors, your audiences and even your management team and employees!
Here are some awesome examples of this we’ve seen:
1. Giving away prizes to someone who comments with the correct answer to a question
2. Random drawings for a swag bag to the right commenter
3. Displaying comments and reactions from online viewers on screens for the in person audience to see in the room
4. Major collaboration between online and in-person audiences to solve a puzzle
5. Listen to ideas from the audience
6. Post up polls for them to vote on what happens next
7. Submit fan art to share
8. Even donating to a cause!
Another thing this myth leaves out is the rich metrics you get from streaming online. Streaming online gives you great metrics for your marketing team to use to set and evaluate goals, find out which parts of your programming were popular, how long your audience will stay engaged in a video, as well as a host of demographic information like the age, time zone, and occupation of your viewers.
One cool way we recently saw Twitch engagement being used by a client was for creating “end of the day” wrap up and recap videos.
Rather than having a dedicated team sit through hours of footage to pull out clips people might find interesting, we used Twitch clips to pull out content that had been clipped by the client’s audience had told us they connected with and strung them together for quick and easy crowd sourced recap videos.
4. When your live stream is over, the reach is over
In our experience, you will see at least 10X the views on a video after the live stream is over, over the following week.
While some platforms like YouTube allow you to trim and make minor edits to your video after the live stream is over, others like Facebook do not yet have that feature.
So definitely keep in mind when you’re planning your streaming content that you may or may not, depending on the destination, have the ability to trim off time at the beginning of your stream that you started before your programming began, which may be really boring for those watching post-event.
5. If we live stream, the programming will need to be perfect
While streaming your event to thousands of viewers may make you think that your programing needs to be perfectly polished and scripted, quite the opposite is true.
Some of the best audience reactions happen during mishaps, awkward timing and candid moments at an event. People watch live content because its more authentic and fluid, that’s the nature of the live space and it’s something we know and love.
If you’re professionally streaming your event, the director of the stream will know just how to call camera angles, graphics and cuts to keep your stream moving along for your online viewers while making them feel like a part of the event and highlighting perspectives that make your brand stand out.
If you want an expert team to help you plan out your next live event, we are here to help. You can contact us here to tell us about your project!