18-21 July 2021
Home & Gift Buyers Festival
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Top Tips for using Instagram Live and Live Video for your brand

So, you’re probably wondering whether you should be using live videos, such as Instagram Live or even other Live video channels such as webinars? Many may be a bit hesitant as the word ‘live video’ can be out of someone’s comfort zone, but actually the benefit for your brand using Instagram Live or other live video channels is that it is a great way to connect with your audience in the most authentic way – and it’s a lot easier than it may seem.
  1. Why do you want to use Instagram Live video and other live video/live streaming methods?
It’s a brilliant way to engage with your current followers and build engagement with your community. You may have noticed that your stories may not always get seen, and with Instagram and Facebook’s algorithms ‘favouring’ live videos, it’s a good way to push your brand back in front of your audience.

This is a way your audience can get to know the brand, building ‘brand trust’ and ‘brand authority’ as they can ask you questions directly and see you and your team share content in a much more authentic way. Consumers are favouring transparency and authenticity more and more, so these opportunities to see the ‘real you’ can help you connect with your audience on a deeper level.
  1. Before you rush into it, make sure you plan ahead
It’s the question we should always ask ourselves and follow suit across all channels, and that is ‘what is the purpose of this live video and will it benefit my audience?’
You may have noticed feedback from your customers about a specific query, or you may have noticed previous content on social media or marketing email that has had better engagement than others. It’s good to fully analyse what has worked well in the past, think whether it is relevant now and before you broadcast online, think about using stories or a post to ask your audience what information they want to know more about – a good way to make your audience feel more involved in your brand.
Make sure once you finish this analysis you decide on what your broadcast will be about and outline all the topics you’ll be discussing beforehand. Think of doing prompts so you don’t forget any important topics during your live video!

Another way you can use online live videos is to partner up with influencers, experts in your industry or even friends and colleagues to take part in your live streams. Instagram Live has seen a spike of celebrities and influencers using this tool, as it’s easy to connect via both Instagram accounts so they can broadcast on the same screen at the same time. It will also send a notification to both of your followers. A good example of whose been doing this is @HollyTucker who’s partnered with a variety of experts from all types of industries to help small businesses.
How To Use Instagram Live      How To Do Instagram Live 2
  1. Once you have good content, you also need the aesthetics to match
It’s a simple rule to remember, but many make this mistake. Remember to make sure your set-up looks good on live video. Think about what people will see, make sure your backdrop looks nice, and even remember to make sure what you wear doesn’t blend into your background – you don’t want people to be focused on the wrong thing! This can include leaving your washing hanging up in the background...
Also, make sure you’re in a quiet room and that there are no background noises so your audience can hear you clearly—and check your WIFI is fully working of course!
  1. Remind your customers when you’re going live
It’s always important to promote an event, and the same rules apply for a ‘live online event’. Make sure you share across all your relevant channels to your audience a few days ahead to remind them what the agenda for your live stream is, when it is taking place and how to access it. It gives them a chance to slot it into their calendars.
The benefit of doing an Instagram Live Video means Instagram will send a notification to your followers that you are going ‘live’, but they might not all be able to make it there and then.

If you’re using another tool such as Zoom or WebEx, make sure you send an email to your database to those who may be interested in this topic of discussion
A friendly reminder goes a long way so your customers don’t feel like they’ve missed out. It’s also a good idea to save the content and make it available after for those who have signed up but didn’t make it to your database via email marketing.
  1. A little test never hurt anybody  
They say practice makes perfect, and if you’re new to something like this, it doesn’t hurt for your own peace of mind to test that the content you’re discussing flows well, and you can do so with a friend or colleague first. But we always recommend live streams to come across as natural and humanised as possible, and not staged and robotic as it can unengaged someone. Think about a live stream as a video call with your friend or colleague!
  1. If Instagram Live Video isn’t for you, try these for online webinars instead
If you’re not keen to use Instagram Live Video, then there are many other tools you can use and some offer a free service, such as Zoom, WebEx etc.

So, to answer the questions of why and how you should be using Instagram Live Video or other Online Webinar tools:
  1. Firstly, think about why you are doing this and how does it benefit your audience.
  2. Remember, it’s a great way to increase engagement with your followers and consumers, by giving them the chance to ask questions directly and showing brand authenticity.
  3. Partner with an influencer or someone experienced to ease the pressure and change up the content –  it’s also a way to tap into and engage with their community too.
  4. Decide on the topic of discussion before you start the live video.
  5. Test your connection.
  6. Make sure your set up and aesthetics look good on camera.
  7. Finally, don’t overdo it. You’ll disengage your current followers if you do too many. Always think quality over quantity when it comes to doing online video content, as you would for your overall content marketing.
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