The Complete Marketer’s Guide to Live Streaming: How to Get the Most Out of Your Efforts Before, During, and After Your Live Event

Digital Marketing 4/26/2017

Delivering a live stream for an event is on the wish list of many marketers- and for good reason. Live video is proven to captivate audiences by putting them into the “first to know”. But what was once considered a privilege is now seen as a right by your audiences. Commonplace social streaming sites like Periscope and Facebook Live have skyrocketed live video demands. The future of communication is not only video, but video in real-time. Because of this, enterprise video users must stream their video in high quality, responsive formats while simultaneously creating an online destination that engages their audience, but they don’t need to be a technical wizard to make it happen. In fact, live streaming does not have to be complicated or resource-intensive. All of the reward, none of the risk-- sounds too good to be true, right? It’s not, here are some reasons you should live stream your next event or event series.

The Benefits of Live Streaming Your Next ROI-Generating Event

  1. Expand Your Brand Audience: live video experiences garner attention. Live streaming expands brand awareness, as well as opportunities for engagement and conversion.
  2. Elevate Your Brand Authenticity: human-to-human connections or 1:1 conversations can take place in the digital space through video. Moreover, live video promises genuine, unedited communication- and if you do it right, live video lifts your brand’s credibility.
  3. Extend Your Brand’s Video Investment: live video gives you loads of raw video content to repurpose. Turn it into the snackable video content audiences crave. Video on demand (VOD) edited from live stream content extends the value of event investments by creating content for weeks, months, or even years.

Both B2C and B2B brands are using live streaming to create new business models and compelling online experiences. And they’re doing it using video platform tools that are easy to use, as well workflows that are both easily repeatable and resource-friendly. Not only is a live event easy to broadcast but you can leverage the investment you make in this event before, during, and after the event.

How to Manage a Live Event Video Stream - For the Non-Technical Marketer

1. Create Live Event Anticipation with a Pre-Event Page

Oracle's Modern Customer Experience pre-event live stream page

A pre-event page creates the destination for your live stream in advance so you can promote your event early and often - and when the time for the live stream comes, there’s no confusion about where to go. Even for the tech-savvy, creating a web page the day of the event, and managing the turnover to the live feed, can be nerve-wracking. Instead, create a space to engage with your audience before the event and streamline your event’s workflow. No doubt you’ve created a hashtag, now it’s time to moderate the conversation and event buzz. Use this space to collate the thoughts of your audiences on social and watch as your brand’s story unfolds, real-time.

The ultimate pre-event win is templatizing your live stream workflow into a process that is easy and repeatable. A branded landing page that lives on your domain, which includes functions like chat, social sharing prompts, and real-time hashtag monitoring establishes an audience hub for pre-event communications and Q&A. Doing this also helps you avoid a black void-like empty video feed! Using a live event video template also reduces your time and effort day-of so you can focus on coordinating a terrific event. Sync up with other members of your marketing team on pre-event promotions to think of other creative ways in which you can utilize this page.

For example, DemandGen will want to know how they can capture leads off this video site. Provide something of value, of course! Very simply, you could offer to alert your visitors of when the next live stream will take place. If your calendar is a mess, you understand this value-add. There is a fear a missing out, so electing for a friendly reminder from a business is often a welcome communication, and a way to cultivate inroads for further engagement.

2. Guarantee a Quality Experience with a Live-Streaming Event Page

Oracle's Modern Customer Experience live-streamed keynote

Now it’s time for the actual event. Live streams have the ability to capture viewers who may not be able to participate in the event in-person. In the past, audiences were subject to simply viewing a video, a pretty passive experience. Now, the modern content consumer wants to interact. Your audiences expect to have an experience as gratifying as the live one.

Provide the optimal viewing experience: our attention spans are short- infinitesimally small. As such, viewer appetite for a poor video experience is quite low. Keep interested parties in their seats. Be sure to assess your live streaming environment to ensure that your live stream is mobile responsive and streams high-quality video. Deliver your live event stream to the web, iOS, and Android devices. Don’t be afraid to go bold with the size of your video; this keeps the audience engaged and focused on the live stream.

‘Second screen’ your experience: what does this mean? Essentially, task your social team, or delegate internal advocates to monitor conversation and interact with viewers. As the stream goes on, viewers will naturally toggle between focusing on social widgets and the live stream event. You’re not upstaging yourself- you’re taking an audience’s natural proclivity for the second screen (or a distracted nature) and using that as an opportunity to reinforce attention back on you. Viewers can continue to watch the video through a mini video player even while they are engaged with the other features of the live event page, so keep adding to your page- perhaps related video content, advertising for partners or long-form resources, and even event calendar downloads. When they scroll through the page to see other content, the live stream follows them!

Monitor your live stream and switch between slides and video feeds when appropriate so your online viewers have an experience akin to that of your in-person attendees, as Oracle did at the Modern Customer Experience

3. Continue to Promote and Repurpose Your Live Video Content

You spent a lot of time and effort organizing your event, promoting it, and executing it. Make sure your event continues to garner attention after the event ends. The best way to do this is with a post-event video destination page. This page is where you can add video clips with event highlights, and set up functionality to capture the interest of new visitors who would have liked to attend the event (but were unable to).

Oracle's Modern Customer Experience post-event live stream page featuring video-on-demand, repurposed from keynotes

Live event marketing results are about more than just attendance! A live event video template makes it fast and easy to create a video archive of your event that you can seamlessly switch on so that even after the event is over, it isn’t really over. The live stream is on-demand and thus omnipresent and ever relevant! Also, consider clipping your live video content into the most interesting or salient topics so that visitors can re-engage with this when visiting the site. As with any content, video can and should be repurposed, when appropriate for your audiences, below are a few ideas.

How to Build a Campaign Around VOD Content

Everyone is going to want to get in on the action. Give your team access to video content and build a multi-channel plan around live video content. Where can you place your live video content?

  1. Landing Pages: live events or content series (think a podcast or web show) further your thought-leadership efforts. Drive your next event registration utilizing your previously recorded live content. Consider clipping video content into chapters and placing them into a playlist. A lead form can be activated after the viewer has watched several videos and has a strong interest.
  2. Blog: transcribe your video content and create blog summaries. Utilize a tool like Storyify to add color to the story with social reactions. You can also utilize the same playlist mentioned above, ungated, and integrate interactive elements that ask the viewer to “choose their own adventure”.
  3. Emails: your live event had value. Don’t lose the vital information shared by your speakers. Integrate these email clips into pre-existing nurture campaigns or create an entirely new one.
  4. Website: build your page into an event resource and video hub until the next event rolls around, whether, annual, quarterly or monthly. Prospective attendees can learn so much through video, use this hub to drive engagement, like email subscriptions. Furthermore, encourage attendees to interact after the event by soliciting user-generated content of the event and placing this on your hub as well.
  5. Social Media: social video use is exploding, and when correctly targeted, social video can generate a more positive brand experience (whether organic or paid). Live video feeds can be clipped and then using an online video platform with an integrated social video distribution tool, you can clip these again into optimized lengths for Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Multiple sets of video assets are created for multiple uses.

The options (and your event!) are endless.

Wow, this is pretty thought provoking, isn’t it? No more excuses! With the increase in affordable video production equipment and the availability of high-end easy-to-use consumer options, live streaming is no longer just for enterprises with big budgets. Take a look at how some Brightcove customers are using Brightcove's live features:

SXSW streams over 60 live sessions to viewers around the world who are interested in interacting with festival content. They then create on-demand, responsive video viewing experiences for all devices as well as utilizing content in their content network for Roku.

Resource: Video Is At the Heart of Discovery for South by Southwest (SXSW) On Mobile, Desktop and OTT

SilverLine Global is the leading sponsored media activation platform for mass participation endurance sports events. Live streaming delivers on their mission to “connect brands and athletes in their moment.” They’re changing the world of sports sponsorships, making it easy for event organizers to launch their own video portal experiences using live and on-demand content as well as video content created by race participants.

Resource: SilverLine Delivers Compelling Live Video Experiences For Endurance Sporting Events

Sotheby’s provides live-streaming auctions around the world. This broadens global audience reach, modernizes a centuries-old brand with a mobile-friendly experience, and increases revenue. No longer do customers need a physical presence at the auction house to participate, meaning Sotheby’s auctions become accessible to a new customer base.

Resource: A Live Look at Luxury: Sotheby’s Uses Video to Open Doors to its Brand

Brightcove Customers Enter 2016 on the New Apple TV®

HUGO BOSS creates live- streaming fashion shows. Online viewers can now have the catwalk sideline experience. Many other customers use live streaming to connect viewers with company executives and thought leaders.

Resource: Fashion’s New Dimension: HUGO BOSS® Earns More than 70,000 Live Views During 3-D Video Fashion Show

A great B2B example? Oracle live-streamed the keynotes of their annual event, the Modern Customer Experience this week in Las Vegas, NV - shown in the screenshots above of pre, during, and post-event coverage. The live content was delivered using Brightcove Gallery, Brightcove’s solution to publish live event experiences for each stage of the live event lifecycle.

In closing, the opportunities for marketers in live streaming abound. Live streaming experiences can delight your audience while fulfilling the goals of your corporate marketing and business teams. Your audiences expect to see live video content they can interact with using their social accounts. Using a live event template, which is optimized for video delivery, means you and your company can create video experiences and reap the benefits of live streaming without dedicated web team or IT support. So, stream your next live event and get the team together to come up with a plan, but remember, the IT team’s attendance is optional.

Editor’s note: this post is a combination of two previous posts, 3 Ways to Take Your Events to the Next Level, published October 25th, 2015, by Shirin Shahin and Live-Streaming Keynotes for Marketers at Oracle’s Modern Marketing Experience, published April 26th, 2016, by Linda Crowe. We’ve added new content and more live video marketing tips, insights, and examples.