Sabre Thinking

18 Jun / Digital marketing trends: Is live video still the way to go?

While live video remains a focus of attention on many social media platforms, you may not be hearing about it as much in the marketing world. We’re going to take a look at the current state of live video marketing and whether or not you should continue to channel your digital marketing efforts here. But first, let’s take a look back at live video over the past few years.

In 2016, when Facebook launched Facebook Live, live videos quickly became one of the top social media marketing trends. With millennials as the largest base of both consumers and creators of live video, it was assumed that like many other digital marketing trends of today, live video would skyrocket. But according to the annual State of Social Media report from Buffer, 25% of brands posted live video in 2016 and then only 30% in the following year. Not much of an incline in the world of digital marketing.

So, what happened to live video? Why didn’t it take off as many thought it would?

First, since the Facebook data breach debacle, the social media giant decided to pivot away from live video as a measure to help create a “privacy-focused vision for social networking” according to Zuckerberg’s quote in The New Yorker. The goal was to avoid the more disastrous consequences of live video that led to harassment and trolling issues.

Second, with the launch of Instagram’s IGTV, the more unpolished live video trend seemed to morph into the next-generation of television. IGTV is an app built for long-form, vertical videos. Much like regular television, IGTV has different channels, each channel designated for the creator of the content. But unlike live videos, IGTV allows marketers and brands to put on a more refined production for followers.

Just because live video seems to be on the decline, it does not mean that it’s not a viable option for your brand. In fact, there are ways to strategically use live video to help move your marketing campaigns forward. Here are a few examples of how your company can embrace live video:

Growing your online presence: If you’re new to online marketing or social media marketing in particular, live video can be a successful approach to growing your following. On Instagram and YouTube for example, live videos get extra promotion with an easy-to-spot “LIVE” badge, helping your content become more recognizable.

Interacting with your audience: Another great use of live video is to interact with your followers in real time. You could host a live Q&A session or webinar, or offer free training and let your audience be a part of the experience and interact with your brand.

Influencer marketing: Live video remains a go-to medium for influencers and personal brands. Marketing professionals and even politicians are using live video to promote their brand and connect with their followers on a more intimate level.

All in all, live video may not have taken off with the same ferocity as some of today’s digital marketing trends. However, it does not discount its use in your brand’s digital marketing strategy. As always, if your company is looking for a way to incorporate more videos, live or produced, into your marketing strategy, be sure to give our team of video marketing experts a call at 508-652-0012.

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