Mobile live streaming – what are the benefits to companies and individual recruiters? And which tools should they use?
I put these timely questions to Krishna De, who is a digital & visual content marketing guru. She answered these questions and more besides. Have a listen on iTunes, SoundCloud or keep reading for a summary of our conversation.
Our tip of the week is actually a book: Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future and this week’s big shout goes out to Martin Mosler of Hager Group.
Why should brands be looking at mobile live streaming and what’s the opportunity?
I’m sure that a number of the people have been experimenting with webinar platforms. Perhaps they’ve used platforms such as Ustream and Livestream in the past – maybe for annual results or internal communications or sharing information about what’s going on and events for their organisations. The big significant change that we’ve seen probably in the last 15 to 18 months is the fact that it’s now very accessible for us to do at minimal cost and also with just mobile devices.
So the reason that I think that organisations need to pay attention, and many of them are already onto this, is that for a long time people have said we want to learn what’s going on inside an organisation. We want to see the real people there. That’s who we trust. You know, if you look at organisation barometers such as the Edelman Trust Barometer, you know, we trust people like us versus a faceless organisation no matter what sector they’re in. Then this is the opportunity. There’s opportunities really around the fact of it makes it very accessible because it’s on a mobile device. That means that you can share things in a way that perhaps you wouldn’t have done before.
In the past you might have had to bring cameras and rigs in and audio and lighting and a professional crew. Now we can do that literally from a device that we have in our pocket provided that we’ve got good Wi-Fi or data connection, which also is making it very cost effective for organisations. Not only giving a different perspective of what’s going on in the organisation but is also reducing costs, overheads in some cases.
What is the key to success with mobile live video?
The key things in terms of mobile live video or live streaming some people might call it, is that what you’re doing there is that you are going to be effectively sharing what you see and what you hear around you to the audience on whatever platform they’re on.
One of the key things that we’ve seen with mobile live video is the ability where you can have either one or multiple people at the same time and then the other thing you can look at, is actually how people interact. So in some platforms you bring people in and they can also be in the screen with you or it might be that they are commenting and then you respond to the comments. So that’s why it’s really social. About the fact that it’s interactive in that way.
Just in terms of a way to get started, I actually have been covering live streaming and live video for several years in terms of case studies on different platforms. What I’ve seen now in terms of actually going to mobile live videos is really…just give you five little steps that you can think about. Before you press the start button, I’m going to give you something which spells out START.
S – Strategic
My S is for let’s be strategic. Let’s understand what are you trying to do in terms of using this platforms? What’s the goal that you are trying to support? Maybe there’s a communications goal, maybe there’s a resourcing goal, maybe there’s an employer branding goal. So let’s understand what that is. Like anything else that you do in communications, how does this tie back to something else? It could be very puny. You want to learn about this. You want to experiment. You want to be seen as an innovator. That’s fine as long as we’ve cleared up that.
T – Technology
My second letter for you, T. T is about technology. There are a few things you need to take into consideration in terms of technology. Now you can get started with literally a mobile phone and nothing else but I would encourage you to think some things such as the lighting. So the environment that you are in, how would you make sure you get the best lighting possible? Maybe that’s about the daylight that you have or maybe have to accentuate it with some other lighting. The other thing is because you’re on a mobile device, your battery power. I’ve seen lots of people actually fall flat because they’ve actually run out of battery. The third thing you might look at there is about Wi-Fi or data. Mobile live streaming eats up a lot of data. So either go for an unlimited contract or make sure that you know what your cap is there, particularly if you’re going to do long live streams. I’ve seen some people do them like eight hours in terms of a mobile live stream. Others might do it just a few minutes. So make sure you’ve got sufficient data or you’ve got a good Wi-Fi connection because that could stop you.
A – Audio
The third letter I have for you of course in the word START is A for audio. And people will be forgiving some visuals but they’ll be less forgiving if you’ve got great audio. So a very simple thing that you could do is, most of you will have a headset that comes with your own ear buds with a microphone that comes with your smart phone or your smart device. Then use that because that can help you reduce the ambient sound, particularly if you are outside then you’re going to have some wind buffering very often. Just simply do that. Now I do have lots and lots of resources on my website which we can talk about later if people are interested but the minimum you can get away with is just your ear buds that comes with your phone.
R – Rights
The R for you in the letter START, is rights. Rights for me incorporate things like do you have the rights of the people and the agreement of the people to be able to actually show them in your live stream? As an example, even if you had an in-house event, a good practice would be to make sure people know that you’re going to be live streaming it so if they don’t want to be on camera, because that could be caught and recorded and published on all sorts of platforms afterwards, then they step out of the way. So I’ve been at events where they’ve said that right up front. So you make sure you stand out of the way. The same in terms of the rights to the graphics and any brand imagery you’re going to share, and also the rights to music. Increasingly, I’m seeing people are sharing music and if you’re going to re-purpose your content particularly you need to think about that. Even if you are doing concerts, I’ve spoken to a concert hall who does live streaming for a number of their events but they also have to make sure they’ve got the permission of the people there involved to do that.
T – Test
And my last letter in my word START, so we’ve covered strategy, we’ve covered technology, audio, rights. The last one is test. So before you even hit the start button, I’d encourage you to test. You can do things like how am I going to title this? Have I got the right camera angle? Let’s see how I am going to navigate through, perhaps you are doing a walk-through of something and also what are people looking like on camera? What’s the sound like? The other thing to remember because if you’re using a smart device, you’ve got a front facing and a rear facing camera and that can affect the audio quality. So again, using those ear buds or using a separate microphone will also help that. So there are my five things I’d look at before you even hit the start broadcast button.
What are the challenges with mobile live video and where do brands get it wrong?
The first thing I’d say is not actually doing it, because there’s so many organisations who are still not yet confident and are considering using live video where it could be a great opportunity. I know because of the work that you do, Jorgen, that very often you’re talking about the employment opportunity in terms of the employer brand, employee communications, as well as other marketing elements. There are so many opportunities out there.
Some organisations haven’t yet even considered it. The second area I’d say is that they think “it’s just another platform from which we can broadcast.” Lots of people have said, “No, this is like having a TV in your pocket.” I’d say, no it’s not. I’ve changed my opinion. You might have even heard me say that perhaps a year ago. It’s not like having a TV in your pocket because a TV in most cases is actually not interactive.
I think that’s the second thing is, understanding that actually people want to interact with you using one of this platforms as well. The third things I’d say is just not having a compelling enough story. You wonder why people don’t come in to your live broadcast, it might be because you haven’t promoted it but it might be because the story telling, the conversation, the things that you’re sharing are not of interest. There’d be three things I’d say over and above my five-point start opportunity.
How can brands measure the ROI of mobile live video?
You’ve got to think about what you are trying to do. In the first instance, it might be about awareness. We want people to be aware. The awareness might be, “do people even know what we stand for?” “Do people even know what our brand consists of?” I know I haven’t worked in corporate, very often people didn’t understand the breadth of what we did and so one of the things you could do is actually just build that awareness about what your organisation stands for through live streaming.
It might be you want to create more interaction and engagement. I’ll give you an example. I actually did some training a little while back with a very large international organisation and I was with the recruitment team and we had a huge segment on the social media training program all about live streaming. Actually we used live streaming even in the training session for them to get feedback from an audience about what would people like to see from them in terms of the kind of content that would be useful for them to share through live streaming to tell people about their organisation? So that live stream was all about engagement and interaction and getting ideas. It may not always be, “let’s look at dollars and cents” at the end of the day (or Euros).
The third thing might be around; do you want people to take action? What’s the call to action you’ve got during that event? Is it about more people start to talk about you but it might be very specifically your call to action is that you want people to go ahead and come over to your career site and learn more about something or download a document. Again very often people forget to think about what the call to action is. It doesn’t have to be buy our product, but it could be something else that you can do. You can be really smart like in any of the social platforms by giving unique codes or unique URLs or unique phone numbers or unique email addresses so you can start to track it.
Follow Krishna on Twitter @KrishnaDe.