Facebook Live Video in a Nutshell

As of the last couple of weeks, anyone can now use Facebook to broadcast live video to their Facebook friends, family as well as fans for Facebook business pages. Here are the key things:

  • It only works on mobile for both personal and business profiles
  • It is easy to use, just like publishing a normal Facebook post
  • People watching a broadcast can choose who to invite to watch with them
  • People can react and comment as the broadcast is on
  • At the end of the broadcast the video is posted to your timeline for others to watch later

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So What’s The Big Deal?

The Social Media Game Just Changed, Again, Forever.

On Thursday the 6th, Facebook made an announcement that will change the face of social media, forever. I say forever because it’s been coming for a while and it has now arrived.

In this post I will not dive into the technicalities and features of these new game-changing features by Facebook Live Video because you can read all about those, here.

Instead, we’ll have a look at what this means for businesses.

Mobile live video is not new, last year we saw Meerkat and Periscope, both live broadcasting mobile apps, just explode into the live video scene and then fizzle out, ever so slowly. Perhaps they were slightly ahead of their time and both the product designers as well as users didn’t know what to make of these apps.

Facebook live video on the other hand, seems to have learned from the two apps and took a different approach to launching the Facebook live video service. They started with celebrities, then opened it up slowly to more and more people, until now it’s available for every Facebook user in the world.

So first off they don’t have a user problem because unlike Periscope and Meerkat this is just a Facebook feature and not a new platform that people will have to learn to use. So it will stick.

What Does This Mean For Businesses?

Facebook pages have been dead for quite sometime now. By dead I mean, the social aspect of pages. They have simply become advertising outlets, we’ve written several times about this.

But now with Facebook live video, if a page goes live all it’s followers will get a notification to come and watch the broadcast (this will definitely change soon). More importantly though, your video is almost guaranteed to appear at the top of the news feeds of your followers who happen to be on Facebook at that time. Facebook has made this clear.

This in itself should be enough to get businesses to use the feature. This brings back the social aspect of Facebook pages. The reason this is so awesome is the rawness of it. IT IS LIVE! and your audience knows this, they’re not looking for a well produced video. The opportunity to create a real connection between business and fans is just remarkable here.

Now I’m sure as with all Facebook products, this will change in time as more and more people adapt, but until then, let’s make the most of it.

Some Advice For Your First Broadcast

Just go for it! That’s the beauty of live video, no one expects it to be perfect. My only suggestion would be to ensure that whatever you’re broadcasting is something your audience would enjoy/benefit from and would expect that of you. This is the reason they liked your Facebook page in the first place. They wanted to hear more from you. So let them have it 🙂

You don’t need a TV presenter either, let one of the staff members take this for a spin. Just show people around the office, see how they react and what they like.

Some use Case Ideas

Of course, I have only used Facebook Live video on a handful of occasions, so I am by no means and expert in Facebook Live video, which I don’t think anybody is just yet, it’s brand new. But I live and breathe online marketing and I have used every single live broadcasting app I could get my hands on over the last year. So here are my thoughts so far and I will update this post as I discover more use cases and features.


  • Create a Facebook event, make it public or private depending on whether you want it to be exclusive
  • Broadcast straight to that event, you can only do this with your personal Facebook profile so you’ll be broadcasting as member or organizer of that event.
    • NOTE: Other members of an event or group can also broadcast.
  • Keep people posted and excited, before, during and after the event.


Because people can interact live there is a potential to create live contests:

  • Post a normal Facebook post from your business page to ask people to tune in at a certain time.
  • Go live and run a quiz or whatever and get people to comment in order to enter the contest.
  • For example, first person to comment on how many car models we sell wins R1,000 voucher.
  • Get creative.

Milestone Celebrations and General PR

When something awesome happens at the office or with your business in general, celebrate with your audience. In a real an authentic way.

  • Birthdays at the office.
  • The delicious cake that Mike bakes every Thursday.
  • The Friday afternoon office braai.

Bonus Tips: 

  • Use your personal Facebook live video first before using the pages.
    • It has more features and allows you to broadcast to only selected people or even just only you, so you can get a feel of things.
  • Encourage people to share your Facebook live video broadcast and explain to them how they can do this.
    • People can share with only selected friends they think would like what you have to show, let them know this because not everyone is comfortable sharing with everyone.
  • Ask people to subscribe so they can get notifications for future broadcasts. You want to be one of the first ones to ask this before everyone is doing it.
  • Always try your best to get the best possible light and sound captured. It helps.
  • See all public broadcasts from around the world by going to this link: https://www.facebook.com/livemap
facebook live video interactive map

Facebook live video interactive map

What other ways are you thinking of using Facebook Live Videos? Share your thoughts please.