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Video is all the rave. It’s rising in popularity and it doesn’t look like this trend will stop anytime soon. The platform might change (RIP Meerkat), but video won’t. It’s here to stay. If you’re looking for a way to stand out on social media in your business, livestreaming is what you should be doing.  But going live can be a scary situation, especially if you’re not sure what to talk about. When you hit the button and find yourself live, the last thing you want to have happen is your mind go blank and abruptly stop your stream. That’s not going to go over well with your audience.

Rest assured, no one is going to expect an Academy Award-worthy presentation. Better yet, it’s way better to be real than it is to be perfect. People expect real; they won’t criticize you for a few stuttering words or repeated sentences. The best thing to do is keep the thought going; just keep talking. As long as you have the topic decided before going live, stick with it and you will be golden. It’s that easy!

Alright—you got me—it’s not that easy. But it’s not as difficult as you might think. And I’m going to make it even easier. There are three main types of conversations to have with your audience that each add value in their own way. With every conversation you have, you need to be delivering something within one of these categories. Bonus points if you can do more than one or even all three.

Educational:

What does your business specialize in? What do customers look to you for that they can’t do on their own? What can you teach them? A great way to add value to your audience is to share some inside information or insight. Tell them something that they really want to hear, what they really want to know. Don’t be afraid of oversharing. Teaching your audience something of true value is a great way to build and grow trust. Do this enough and they will start to come to you in search of advice and guidance, which can lead to a sale. And this makes everyone happy.

Inspiration:

Inspiration is one of the best types of content to deliver. Who doesn’t like to be inspired? The trick is sharing something that is truly inspiring. An Oprah quote isn’t going to cut it, not unless you add your own take. Go further and share the story behind why you think it’s so inspiring and why it came to mind to share it today. If your audience wanted just an inspiring quote, they’d go to Pinterest and type inspiration into the search bar and start pinning. You need to do more; you need to be better. Just make sure it aligns with your business. Sharing fitness inspiration quotes won’t resonate with the audience you want to have if you’re a dentist. By staying true to the core values of your business, you will draw in the audience of those same values. When your values align, you're way more likely to do business with you.

Entertaining:

Ohhh, this should be fun. Of course you want to be entertaining, right? This might seem like a silly question, but it’s more complex than you think. People are on social media as a form of entrainment; they’re escaping their lives to view their own personal reality TV show streaming live on their news feed. You’re competing for attention and it’s cutthroat. If you want to gain attention, your livestream must be as compelling as their friend’s latest baby’s birthday. That’s a pretty high standard. For them, they already have an emotional connection with their friends. You’re basically trying to get into their circle. To do this, all your conversations should be entertaining. You don’t have to start juggling or singing, but you do need to infuse more energy into your livestream than Ben Stein. The first step is to have fun; if you’re not enjoying yourself no one else will either.

That’s a Wrap!

The last thing you want to do is be too abrupt, causing an immediately reaction from a person scrolling to not only pass your post, but to block future posts. So what’s entertaining to your audience? What’s inspiring? Should you go adopt a puppy and start posting cute puppy photos with your business’s logo in the corner? What about aiming your video camera at your best friend’s child in hopes she’ll do something hilarious. Although this could get you a few extra likes, it’s not a strong strategy for lasting success. Stay true to yourself and your business. Be the person and business you want people to connect with. Don't pretend to be something else just to get more likes or follows because those aren't the people you want following you. By simply being who you are, you're going to attract like-minded people.

Key Point:

It all comes down to knowing your audience, knowing yourself, and making a commitment to add more value (through being educational, inspiring or entertaining) to their lives than you ask them to give to you. Have these three things in mind when you start your livestream and you will create a lasting connection and your audience will grow substantially.

Are you ready to start livestreaming? Need a little conversation starter? I’ve come up with eleven great business ideas to help you start your first livestream. Remember, keep it real. Don’t worry about being overly eloquent nor funny. Just be yourself. If you have a story or reason why you’re livestreaming, share it. This will help you connect with your audience immediately.

  1. Tip of the day
  2. Quote of the day
  3. Behind the scenes
  4. New product announcement
  5. Question and answer session
  6. Introducing new employee
  7. New industry announcement
  8. Flashback
  9. Something funny
  10. Showcasing a special
  11. A helpful fact

 

BONUS:

KEY POINTS FOR A SUCCESSFUL LIVESTREAM:

  • Keep it light and fun
  • Tell a story
  • Always add value
  • Stay on topic
  • Have a conversation
  • Stay consistent
  • If you mess up, there’s always tomorrow