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Using Live Video Effectively (Even if You’re Camera Shy)

By Snap Agency June 9, 2017

Video marketing has always been fairly popular online. But recently a new twist has emerged, and this trend is something every business owner needs to understand. Live streaming has exploded in popularity.

Not very familiar with live video? You’re not alone. Many business owners don’t understand how live video can be used to boost their brand. But live video is easier and simpler than you might think. Here’s everything you need to know about how to use live video effectively:

The Marketing Power of Live Video

Live video helps create a personal connection between customer and brand. Brands as large as the NFL and Dunkin’ Donuts have found great success with live video. Customers enjoy live video as well. Over 80% of people surveyed said they preferred live video to blog posts.

Basically, every major internet platform has a way to broadcast live video. YouTube, Facebook Live, Periscope, Snapchat and Instagram all have live video capabilities.

Live video is popular and accessible. But many business owners are reluctant to use it. After all, live video can seem very intimidating. You understand how to run your business. But do you know how to perform in front of a camera?

Most people don’t have much experience with live video. They’re hesitant to appear in front of the camera. Even if you’re partnered with SEO professional, you’re the person who is most likely going to appear in live video.

If that sounds scary, there’s good news. You don’t have to be Tom Hanks in order to create competent and engaging live video. Let’s take a look at some strategies which will help turn you into a live video pro:

Plan Your Live Video

If you’ve ever watched live streams, you might have noticed they’re relatively informal nature. Many YouTube personalities record their lives “on the fly.” This creates videos with a relatively loose, off the cuff structure.

Unfortunately, what works for YouTube personalities doesn’t work for brands. In order to create a consistently positive impression of your brand, you’ll want to carefully plan your live video events.

Detailed planning helps you avoid mistakes. You’ll also have an easier time staying on message. Plus, when you have everything planned in advance, you’re likely to appear more confident and natural on camera.

Types of Live Video

Brands developing live video events have a few options. Here are some popular and effective strategies.

Live Streams

This is a continuous live shot of an event or process. You’ll show a process or event as it happens. Usually, you’ll put some type of graphic overlay somewhere on the page with your logo and a brief description of the content.

Live streams work well when your product or service involves some physical action. For example, here’s a live stream from a surfing championship. Because surfing is such a visual sport, live streams can be very compelling.

Of course, you’re probably not in the surfing business. That’s okay! Any physical product demonstration can benefit from a live stream. For instance, if you sell kitchenware, hold a live cooking demo to show your products in action.


Live streaming is often a great option if you sell a service. Because a service isn’t as visual as a product, you want to use live video as a way to connect with customers.

One popular example here is Google’s office hours hangouts. Users can interact directly with Google employees. Any business can offer up regular hangouts to answer questions and discuss topics.

A more formal way to connect with users is by conducting a webinar. A webinar is a live virtual lecture where you present concepts related to your industry. Effective webinars focus more on education than advertising, so you’ll want to focus on providing industry info instead of pushing product sales.

Gain extra mileage out of your live events by posting them on your site afterward. This lets your videos connect with people who missed it during the initial broadcast.

Always Focus on Your Audience

Great live video always keeps the audience at the forefront. Your video should provide useful information for viewers. While the specific topics will depend on current trends in your industry, there are a few elements found in just about every successful live stream. They are:

  • A promise of value within the video
  • Continuous presentation of new information throughout entire video
  • Real-time and on-going interaction with viewers

This is where planning can be a big benefit. When you develop a structure for your live video, you’ll be able to ensure each video contains interesting, engaging information from beginning to end.

Live video can be an effective marketing strategy for just about any online business. Are you using live video effectively to boost your brand? Contact us today to learn more about how live video can work for you.