Over the past couple of months, the wedding industry has needed to evolve rapidly. Guides for Brides is no exception. We have relied upon the social media marketing tools that are at our disposal more than ever before. Every Thursday since the beginning of April, we have been hosting Wedding Fair Live on our Facebook page. It is safe to say it has been an incredible success and those who got involved in our events have returned positive feedback. Some suppliers received numerous enquiries in the hours following their talk.
Why should I start using Facebook Live or Instagram Live?
The live tools on social media sites like Facebook and Instagram have been around for a while. When you go live to your audience, everyone following your page will receive a notification that you are live. This single notification, plus Facebook’s active effort to place your live videos in front of people, increases your organic reach tenfold. For us, this meant organically in one month, our post engagements went up by 250%. On top of this, our Facebook page views increased by 307%. That’s massive!
From the experts
I would recommend going live on social media to anyone who is looking to not only increase their post engagement but also reach a wider audience.
Nikita Thorne, Marketing Manager at Guides for Brides
Do I need all the fancy equipment?
No, generally all you need for an effective live broadcast is a smartphone or tablet, good lighting (natural light from a window is excellent), decent wifi or cellular signal and a quiet space. There are pieces of equipment that you can get to enhance your broadcast, but they are not necessary. Most mobile phone cameras are far better than laptop or desktop cameras and it’s likely that your mobile will already have all the software installed to Go Live instantly, so it’s not only easier, but the results will be better too.
Going Live on social media is very easy. Before we give you our 5 tips for a successful live broadcast, here’s how you can go live on Facebook and Instagram. Just follow these simple steps and give it a go. It will be worth your time and effort.
How to go Live on Facebook:
Head to your business page in the Facebook App and click on the ‘Create Post’ button (identified by a pen and paper icon).
In the blank box, type the caption for your video, remembering to tag any relevant people and business pages or paste relevant links.
Press the red ‘Live Video’ button. Please note, when you are typing the caption these options may disappear, simply place your finger where the section was previously and swipe up. You should see the option reappear in the list.
You’ll be taken to a Live preparation section. Here you should see your face and a big blue button that says ‘Start Live Video’. If you do this and are faced with a black screen, it means that you may need to give the Facebook app permission to access your microphone and video.
When you are ready to start, hit that blue ‘Start Live Video’ button. You’ll be faced with a countdown after which you will be live! There will be an eye in the top corner. If that eye has a number next to it, you have viewers. Comments will also start appearing on the bottom left, you’ll be able to scroll through these with ease.
View the video bel0w to run through this in more detail:
How to go Live on Instagram:
Head to your business page and click on the profile image (where you would usually go to add to your story). If there is already a story on your page, you’ll need to click on the blue + icon in the top left corner.
You should hit the story creation section. You’ll need to swipe right or click on the ‘Live’ button in the bottom centre of the screen.
The top of the screen will tell you how many of your followers are currently active on Instagram. This will help you identify whether it is a good time to go Live.
To start the live broadcast, click on the white button with the pink and orange icon in the centre to begin broadcasting.
5 Tips for a Successful Live Broadcast
After a month of really digging our teeth into this, we’ve come up with 5 tips that will help you have a fantastic Live broadcast.
1) Breathe, take your time
Yes, it can be incredibly nerve-wracking, especially when you are new to this. However, panicking and speaking too quickly will disengage your audience. When you fly through your presentation, you will also find that you haven’t maximised the time you have with your audience. So, take your time, breathe, and smile. The more calm and personable you are, the more likely they will stay and engage with your video.
Top Tip: We’re all now used to talking to clients on Zoom so speak to your Live audience in exactly the same way, as if it’s just you and your customer talking, after all, that’s how you want them to feel.
2) Prepare your content – don’t wing it!
Your social media platform has brought the audience to you through a notification. Make them want to stay by having well thought out content. If you have lots to cover, it may help you to have some notes to refer back to. This will help you stay on track and avoid too much improvisation and repetition. It is never a good idea to just wing it. You may end up relying on viewers asking questions to fill your content; this is something that is never guaranteed and can sometimes make for an awkward and much shorter session.
3) Encourage audience engagement
People can often be shy, so give them permission throughout your broadcast to ask questions and make comments. If they do this, try to actively respond to them by thanking them or answering their query publically. Don’t be disheartened if there aren’t many questions, often people just enjoy watching. It is important to remember that the length of time they spend watching your video is also a form of engagement.
Top Tip: Give shy viewers the confidence to ask questions by getting a friend or colleague to make the first move. They can ask you a few relevant questions and make comments on your video. It may trigger others to do the same.
4) Think: 10 minutes
Going live will trigger your followers to be notified by the platform you are using, but this isn’t always immediate. At the time of writing, Guides for Brides had 58k followers on Facebook. For some of our top fans, their live notification would have been sent within a few moments of the live broadcast starting. Personally, I sometimes only receive the notification two minutes after the broadcast begins (and I’m on our page a lot). When your audience does eventually receive the notification, you ideally still want to be live. So aim for at least 10 minutes of content to maximise this chance.
5) Could you reuse the video?
When you are preparing your content, make sure you are thinking about where you can use it again. This is often the key to a really successful piece of video content. Ask yourself: ‘Will this be relevant to my audience again?’ Asking yourself this question will help you to ensure the time you spent creating the content will be useful in many different ways. You could embed the video in a relevant blog post, you could take a voice clip and create a podcast from it. There are so many possibilities.
Top Tip: Remember to save a copy of your video when the Live broadcast is finished so it stays on your page and you can use it elsewhere. You’ll be given the option to “save’, “share” or “delete”.
Guides for Brides are here to help
If you are looking for advice on going Live on your own social media pages or would like to work with Guides for Brides to go Live on our platform, get in touch with me (firstname.lastname@example.org). I would be happy to help advise your strategy and see what we can do to collaborate.
About the author
Written by: Nikita Thorne
With a first-class degree under her belt and a thirst for knowledge, Nikita is a passionate writer and marketer. As the marketing manager, Nikita leads our specialist team of marketers and actively connects wedding industry suppliers with prospective couples through effective marketing and advertising campaigns.