Although some marketers believe that YouTube and Snapchat are the best means for advertising with certain brands, Facebook Live has become a more substantial option. Over the past few months, it has attracted millions of users, and more programming is regularly showing up, including those from influencers, creators and brands.
Accessibility remains one of Facebook Live’s strongest traits, as the company has been adding a number of features to enhance video experiences across the board, as well as support for everything from “puppycams” to DJI drones, enabling even greater (and more inventive) videos to be posted and shared. With the debut of Continuous Live Video, users can now add persistent streams that cover everything from nature feeds to other lifestyle-based videos with no interruption in streaming.
Facebook Live has also become a phenomenon with the simplest of videos. For instance, “Chewbacca Mom,” a woman who wore a roaring Star Wars mask following a recent shopping run, has managed to gain 140 million views over the course of five days, smashing previous Facebook Live records. In fact, she has become such a big phenomenon that James Corden invited her on to be interviewed on The Late Late Show, where she wore the mask around The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams, as well as getting an invite to speak with Chewbacca himself, Peter Mayhew.
Brands have begun adopting to Facebook Live as it would other video mediums, namely YouTube. For instance, Dunkin Donuts’ behind-the-scenes tour of its Test Kitchen turned out to be a big hit with fans, making them hungry for the chain’s delicious desserts.
A number of companies have taken advantage of the Facebook Live format. iHeart Radio utilized it to set up a live Facebook Q & A with singer Max Schneider, as well as Bebe Rexha taking part in a red carpet session for the iHeart Radio Music Awards.
However, it has also become a place for unconventional partners. The Metropolitan Museum of Art recently hosted a special Facebook Q & A with curator-in-charge Andrew Bolton, alongside Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, along with a pre-tour of its new exhibition, revolving around the ancient Hellenistic city of Pergamon.
Other brands have also experimented with Facebook Live, and there’s room for expansion, especially with live reveals from events like E3 or other trade shows. Some brands are still getting the hang of things, but more have come to realize just how effective formats like Live broadcasting can be. As a result, more companies are showing a preference to Facebook video, thanks to its ease of use and its built-in audience, which consists of millions of users.
So what’s next for Facebook Live? Evolution, of course. More users are starting to get more into its format, creating unique or fun videos (like the “Chewbacca Mom” clip) or taking advantage of its live format to showcase special events. This includes sports activities, as the Spanish Football League recently announced that it will broadcast its very first European soccer game on the channel, with a face-off between the At.Madrid Féminas and the Athletic Club. Obviously, that doesn’t mean every sports league is going to run to Facebook, but having the option to broadcast a live event is bound to be appealing to some partners.
Facebook Live is here to stay, and it’s making quite an impact against YouTube with its accessibility, features, and, most importantly, audience reach. That should make it a viable option for both brands and influencers for years to come.