From the integration of Periscope into Twitter and the launch of Facebook Live, to YouTube’s announcement of live mobile streaming and Tumblr’s video play, 2016 has undoubtedly been the year of live video.
While live video isn’t exactly new, more powerful broadband combined with increasingly sophisticated mobile technology has resulted in increased uptake across different sectors. All the while, Asia-Pacific marketers are jumping on the bandwagon and trying to figure out how to integrate real-time broadcasting into their campaigns.
Power Of FOMO
Fear of missing out, or FOMO as it’s commonly known, is more than mere Gen Y slang. It’s a simple human response to a barrage of social media, and the live video phenomenon is taking full advantage. Live video’s value is derived from its ability to add that “authentic human” element to digital communications, according to Business Insider’s 2016 “Live Video Streaming Report.”
“People will always pause to glance at a live-video stream, simply because of the fear of missing out on something and not being able to catch up later,” said Preethi Sanjeevi, regional chief marketing officer and head of consumer insights for VML Southeast Asia and India.
Adidas Indonesia wanted people to stop and look when it used Periscope to reveal its 2015 search for the most talented Indonesian football player. As part of a product campaign for a new line of football boots, live streaming the superstar search gave the company a channel to reach its audience on a mass scale, while also triggering the FOMO effect among consumers.
“By live streaming the event on its app, viewers experienced the event from their mobile devices and were brought closer to the action, which forged an emotional connection to the brand,” Sanjeevi said.
Mark, Set, Action!
Live video is compelling because it lets the audience share the moment as it happens. The BI report attributes this success to substantial investments from social platforms, such as Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, and Twitter.
Live-streaming services are becoming increasingly ubiquitous, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that every brand should press record. According to Anne Russell, ANZ marketing director of cloud-based video company Brightcove, marketers should first consider how live video fits in with their existing content strategies and how it can help them meet business objectives.
“Any content you produce should have a purpose, and this applies to live video, regardless of whether you want to increase engagement, brand loyalty, or sales,” Russell said.
Russell said she believes marketers should test live video, especially if their company is already producing content for other purposes. “If you produce live events already, like a fashion show or award ceremony, why not stream it live online?” she said.
Point Of Differentiation
With a number of brands leading the charge into live video, challenges associated with measurement and management have emerged.
“The success of live-streaming video hinges on brands overcoming a lack of measurement standards, as well as changes in social media sites’ algorithms that affect what content users see,” the BI report said.
VML’s Sanjeevi also warned that live video stages can be complex to manage, and it may be difficult to achieve tangible results. “To generate a substantial return on investment, live video requires a lot of scouting, careful planning, and a mix of hands to manage time and chart the art direction,” he said. “However, micropayments now allow live video to be linked to sales, making it a more sustainable proposition.”
The BI report advises that leveraging these micropayments, midroll video ads, and direct payments from social platforms are key to monetising live streaming videos.
It may be in its infancy, but the outlook for live video is promising for marketers and will usher in a new era of opportunities throughout the APAC region, Sanjeevi added.