Last year, the recent launch of Meerkat was all the buzz at SXSW, with Periscope just around the corner. Since then we’ve gotten Facebook Live, and YouTube Connect is now on the horizon. Live streaming wasn’t born in 2015, but being able to do so more easily from a mobile device made live streaming go mainstream.

 

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So naturally, live video streaming was a big topic at SXSW this year. Below we share what we learned from some of the brands at SXSW, as well as what we’ve learned using live streaming platforms to broadcast with our own clients this past year.

 

Audience is first: Think about your target and what they want. And make sure the concept of your broadcast will pay off and provide value for your users.

 

Leverage your other platforms: Be sure to leverage the followings you already have on other social networks to get the word out about your broadcasts. Even though Periscope is a Twitter product, you should definitely announce you’re planning to broadcast on other networks like Facebook and Google+. Since Periscope connects with Twitter, it may also be a good idea to broadcast when you know your Twitter following is most active.

 

Remember there’s no re-shooting: With Periscope and other live streaming platforms, you only get one shot to get it right. Having your production logistics worked out ahead of time is key to a successful broadcast. Be sure to test lighting, sound, and internet connectivity well ahead of time. Also keep in mind Twitter squares your broadcast, so it’s crucial to consider how you will frame your broadcast.

 

Don’t get too cute with your titles: Descriptive accuracy builds confidence. Keep your titles short, and never oversell what to expect from your broadcast. And never use emojis or symbols in your title if you can help it.

 

Broadcast often: One of the best ways to build a following is broadcasting on a consistent basis. By doing so, you can become like one of your follower’s favorite TV shows, and they’ll know when to tune-in each week. Part of the failure of Meerkat was due to few users who were broadcasting on a consistent basis.

 

But if you don’t have a compelling reason to stream often, then don’t. Quality matters much more than quantity.

 

And most importantly…

 

Be interesting: Don’t just jump on a live-streaming platform because so many other brands are doing it. Have a clear purpose for using these platforms that adds value for your audience. People have short attention spans, so it’s important to be interesting from the get-go. If you don’t win your viewers over on your first broadcast, they may never tune back in.