Unlike other social media platforms, Instagram’s live streaming service is unique. You can only go live via its IG Stories. And after your stream ends, your live video will disappear just like any other IG story after 24 hours.
This is probably one reason why going live on Instagram is not as popular as going live on Facebook or YouTube. But it’s just as effective as a marketing strategy. Let’s dig deeper to learn more about this unique type of video marketing.
What is Instagram Live?
Instagram Live is a live streaming feature that lets users go live on Instagram stories. But, unlike pre-recorded Instagram stories and IGTV videos, IG Live is completely unedited. Plus, it’s more engaging since you can interact with your viewers in real time. This makes it an excellent way to showcase the human side of your brand to your audience.
It promotes healthy communication between your business and your audience. As a result, you get to build a stronger connection between your potential customers and your brand.
How Does Instagram Live Work?
Can you go live on Instagram?
Instagram Live works a little differently from other social media platforms. For starters, you can only go live through your Instagram Story. That means your live video will only stay on your Instagram Stories for 24 hours. After that, it will disappear just like any regular IG Story.
Although it’s only temporary, it’s a good way to improve your discoverability on Instagram. For example, your followers will receive an in-app notification every time you go live. Plus, your live feed gets bumped to the front of their IG Stories feed.
A live stream on Instagram can last up to an hour. During that time, you can interact with your audience in real time. Pinning a comment on your live video helps encourage viewers to respond. It also keeps everyone informed of what’s going on. Nowadays, you can also start a live video with a friend. This is a great feature if you want to do interviews and collaborations.
How to Go Live on Instagram Step by Step
Live streaming on Instagram isn’t as easy as hitting the live button. It takes more effort than that. Here are some of the things you need to consider before going live.
1. Identify the purpose of your live stream
The first thing you need to determine before going live is the purpose of your live broadcast. Why do you want to go live? Your broadcast should be able to offer something extra to your viewers, something they can’t get from other Instagram accounts.
Some of the things you can do to deliver value to your audience include:
- Product reveal. Build anticipation and tell them you’ll do the reveal in real time on Instagram Live.
- Behind-the-scenes. Bring your audience with you as you go through the preparation process for your live broadcast. This makes viewers feel like they’re actually there with you.
- Question and answer sessions. Doing a quick Q&A session with your viewers is an excellent tactic for directly interacting with your audience. It also shows that you’re approachable and that you care about what your followers have to say.
- Feature a special guest. Viewers love it when their favorite streamers collaborate. Reach out to other brands or influencers who want to work with you.
2. Plan your content
Now that you know your live broadcast’s purpose, it’s now time to plan your content. For example, if you’ve decided to do a live interview, you should determine who you want to invite to your event.
Once your guest has confirmed, you should start coming up with interview questions. And as a gesture of goodwill, you can share those questions with your guest. This is the best time to ask them if there are sensitive questions or topics they don’t want to talk about. This will save you a lot of awkward moments during your live stream.
3. Practice and prepare
Once you have your content all figured out, you can create a loose script for your event. Use this to practice and prepare for the event. This will help minimize mistakes while you’re live. You should also have an idea of how long the video will last.
Take a test video once you’ve practiced your script. Review your practice video and look for areas for improvement. Are your audio and video clear enough? Is the background too distracting? How steady is your camera? Is the video well-lit? This may be the only chance you get to correct mistakes. Use your time wisely.
4. Outline your video
Create an outline for your video. Make sure to cover all the crucial topics you’ll be covering in your live event. Your outline should also include call-to-actions, such as “Leave your comment below” or “Follow me on Instagram.”
5. Set a stream schedule
The next step when you have everything figured out is to set a stream schedule. The best time to go live on Instagram is the time your audience is awake and online. How will you know that? First, you have to identify who your target audience is. If most of your viewers are students or employees, then it’s best to stream after school or work when they’re already home. You can also stream on weekends.
6. Promote your live event in advance
Let your followers know in advance that you’ll be hosting an IG Live. This way, they can set aside time for it. You can use Instagram Stories for your pre-live promotions. You can also use other platforms to promote your live stream.
Another way to build buzz for your event is to give your audience limited-time exclusive offers. Promise your audience that you’ll be giving away discounts and promos during your live event. Since Instagram only keeps live videos for 24 hours, people will feel like they can’t afford to miss out on your live stream. Embrace the ephemeral nature of Instagram Live and capitalize on your viewers’ FOMO.
Live streaming on Instagram is not just fun. It’s also an excellent tool to reach and engage your viewers in an intimate and compelling way. It’s also a highly effective platform for strengthening your marketing efforts. Give IG Live a try and watch your business growth skyrocket.