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Influencer marketing is a common method for reaching highly engaged online audiences, but many companies are still trying to fine-tune the best methods for cashing in on influencers and their popularity. Live streaming offers a fresh and effective way to pull influencers into your campaigns. When well-trusted influencers and compelling live streams come together, it’s almost impossible for audiences to look away. Discover some of the fascinating ways that live streaming is shaping the face of influencer marketing campaigns.
Make Influencers More Accessible To Audiences
Live streaming allows viewers to engage with popular influencers on a new level. An undeniable thrill exists to getting a celebrity or other popular influencer to respond to your tweet or comment. That sense of excitement amplifies when you get a live response to your questions or comments. Live streaming gives a face and voice to the content, items that are lacking in written forms of marketing.
Live streaming also trumps pre-recorded video when you need to pack a personality-driven punch. Scripted videos are just that — scripted. In a live stream, you have an added sense of uncertainty and anticipation because you don’t know what will happen next.
Influencer Brian Fanzo gave a compelling example of how conversations can derail in a live video stream. Fanzo was attempting to give a backstage tour via live stream when viewers began steering the conversation toward his smartphone. Adapting quickly, Fanzo went with the flow and said, “We started talking about technology because that is where participants wanted to go.” Working with an influencer for live video marketing campaigns makes both the host and your brand more accessible to audiences in an authentic and compelling way.
Create Content With Quantitative ROI
The ROI of influencer marketing is often difficult to measure. However, live streaming is one area where you can get measurable results that offer valuable information for crafting future campaigns. By the third quarter of 2015, year-over-year ad views had increased 113 % for live video. In 2016, 81% of internet audience members viewed more live content than they did the previous year. By 2021, the live streaming industry could reach $70.05 billion.
Live streaming is an outstanding way to reach the online audience. The technique has massive appeal for viewers, drawing them in far more than traditional online videos. Videos on Facebook Live get viewed for three times as long as a pre-recorded video.
At first glance, live streaming may seem like another form of entertainment, but the possibilities go much deeper. Companies can use powerful influencers and live video to access audiences in many diverse industries. Twitter streamed more than 600 hours of live video in the fourth quarter of 2016. Of these hours, only 10% were entertainment, while 38% concerned news and politics, and 52% involved sports
Build Trust With Viewers
Live video comes with a generous helping of transparency. Your influencer’s voice will ring truer in a live conversation with fans than it does in a blog post. Viewers can engage with your product or service and the influencer in open conversation handled in real time.
If you’re looking for a compelling way to build trust with your audience, a live video is a great place to start. Offer a behind-the-scenes tour of your offices or production facilities. Invite an industry influencer to interview some of your staff members in a live conversation with questions and comments from viewers.
Provide Cost-Effective Access To Video Marketing
If you’re looking for an affordable way to add video to your marketing campaign? Professionally produced videos can be staggeringly expensive. Even the DIY approach takes time and video editing software. Those two elements are part of the reason why influencers love live streaming so much. All you need is a solid internet connection and quality smartphone to live stream video.
Tony Wang, co-founder of agora.io says using an influencer for your live stream adds to the value of your low-cost endeavor. “Influencers offer instant access to their highly engaged audience,” he says. “While a live stream hosted exclusively in-house will reach your own fans and followers, working with an influencer will expand your reach without leveraging the massive expense of creating a highly produced video.”
Create Hosting Opportunities For Popular Events
Working with influencers and live media streams, you can add live hosts to your events with minimum production or preparation costs. When NBC launched Hairspray Live, the network engaged 20 influencers to help hype the event. Some of these popular names hosted the event through Facebook Live while it was airing on television.
Adding an influencer stream to your event offers engaged fans a fun new way to take part in the action from a remote location. It also builds awareness of the event among those who didn’t know about it. Live streams appear at the top of social media feeds, so users receive 200% more notifications for live streams than for other activity.
Allow Influencers To Fine-Tune Marketing Strategies
Live streams give smart influencers a wealth of new opportunities for successfully promoting your brand and driving conversions. When you’re producing a scripted video, blog, or other static media post, you can edit to your heart’s content, but you’ll have to cross your fingers and hope for the best when you finally post your piece.
“In a live stream influencers can respond compellingly to feedback from the audience,” says attorney Timothy Abeel who uses live streaming. “They might answer questions, ease concerns, or simply use the viewers’ comments to make snap decisions about which direction to take as they tour your facility or show off new products. There’s nothing like offering the opportunity for potential buyers to ask their trusted influencer to demonstrate a product feature live. When the influencer responds to the viewers’ interests while keeping your company front and center, you have live media gold.”
Live video is a powerful medium that can find a place in any online marketing campaign. Adding an influencer to the mix will only make your posts more powerful. Bringing a trusted face and name into an authentic live video will allow you to reach your audience in the most personable way possible.
This article originally appeared on Forbes.