One of the best ways to engage a larger audience at your next event is to leverage live streaming. The basic concept is that attendees can participate remotely from around the world as it is happening.
This certainly does not replace a live event, and, with the right strategy in place, it can even drive traffic to your next event. In the past, live streaming has been cost prohibitive, and while great live streaming technology can still cost a pretty penny, you do get what you pay for. That being said, there are some new and inexpensive apps that every event planner can leverage for their next event to widen their reach and connect with their audience at large. Three players are relevant in this space.
With 1.65 billion active monthly users, Facebook is already the most popular social media platform. This spring, they’ve upped their game by releasing live streaming, a new feature which already changed the way we consume news. Its impact on events is not yet clear, but it is certainly highly relevant. From a personal account or an event page, you can live stream and save the videos to your photo roll. Users can interact with you via comments and emotional reactions and the engagement is very high here because so many people are active on Facebook throughout the day. It’s a huge focus for people who want to leverage live streaming for event marketing or branding your events business. The fact that the majority of guests already carries the app on their phones is huge!
Periscope – acquired by Twitter – is my favorite free live-streaming app for a few different reasons. First of all, it’s incredibly simple to use. Just fire up the app, rest your phone somewhere reliable (or even better, on a tripod) and hit the button to go live. Users can tune in and see what’s happening, comment or like your stream. You can also make your videos available for replay once the broadcast is over. These replays only last about 24 hours for now, but there is the ability to save your video and embed it on your website for a longer lifespan. One of the new things Periscope is offering is a partnership with GoPro so you can live stream anything you take on your GoPro camera. For sporting or active events, this is a great option, but it also holds big opportunities for better angles, better video quality and more!
This platform allows you to live stream directly from your browser, without downloading any software. A ProPlan costs just $99 and many people prefer this over their popular competitor, LiveStream because users do not have to log in to view your stream. This makes it easy for you to integrate with Facebook and other sharing services to maximize your reach. You also have access to the audience of 12 million users already on the UStream platform.
WRITTEN BY LIZ KING
Liz King is founder of TechsyTalk, a platform for event professionals to explore technology. Liz is one of the industry’s acclaimed social media experts and a regular guest author on zkipster’s blog.