The idea of streaming a live video is intimidating. We get it. What if you forget your lines or lose your place? What if you stumble over your words? What if you say the wrong thing?
Easy fixes. Practice a lot beforehand (although just being spontaneous can be quite charming). Speak slowly and enunciate. And if you say the wrong thing… pause a second, regroup and clarify.
There are many excuses for not making live videos a part of your social media strategy, but the fact is that those excuses don’t outweigh the benefits. There’s no better way to engage with your audience, display your unique skills and personality, grow your following, and help establish your brand than by creating a live video that gets noticed.
Here are some tips to help you get started leveraging live videos right away.
1. Brainstorm Ideas
It goes without saying that your live videos should be about something. And while “real estate” is a niche in and of itself, it’s far too broad to cover concisely as a video topic. So instead, think inside the box (how the real estate market works, the basics of financing a property, tips for staging a home for sale) and outside the box (a day in the life of an agent, why your city is a great place to live, differences in architectural styles) to come up with as many potential topics as you can. Don’t worry about picking a “boring” topic—you can deliver even dull content in a fun and entertaining way.
2. Create an Outline
While rambling, off-the-cuff videos may work well for certain YouTube celebrities, as a professional, you’re going to want to come across as knowledgeable and polished. That means planning out what you want to say beforehand. Creating an outline doesn’t have to take the form of an actual script, although feel free to write one if you think it’ll help. All you need is a broad outline that lists your talking points and any important information you want to be sure to mention. Don’t forget if you have a specific call to action you want viewers to take, put it in your outline.
Run through your video at least once or twice before going live. Remember, you’re a professional, and once you go live, you can’t say “Cut!” and call for another take.
4. Pick a Good Location
You may want to create a “set” for your video or do it on location at one of your listings, but don’t get too creative with it, and try not to film outdoors, in poor lighting, or in a loud environment. Your audience should be engaged but not distracted. The main goal is to choose a location that will add to the appeal of your video.
5. Be “Real”
Live video feeds create a special connection between the viewers and the content creator. Don’t try to be perfect; instead, be engaging. If viewers ask questions in the comments section of the feed, take the time to answer them. If you flub up or trip over a word, it’s okay to laugh at yourself and try again. Be the same charming person you are when you work with your clients in person. Have fun.
6. Be Consistent
If you create great content, your audience will expect more of the same as part of your brand. Maintain the same style and tone throughout all your videos to help solidify your brand image. Schedule live videos frequently and regularly to help encourage more followers and inspire trust and respect from your audience.
7. Know Your Platforms
Depending on what social media platforms you use as part of your marketing strategy, you’ll want to incorporate live video in some or all of them. Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram are the three most popular platforms among today’s consumers. All three offer live streaming functions.
You can broadcast a live stream to your profile, personal or business pages, and group or event pages using Facebook Live, accessible through the Facebook app. YouTube Live also allows you to reach your audience in real-time and uploads an archived version of your live feed to your channel automatically once your live feed ends. Instagram has a Live Stories function which allows you to broadcast in real-time for up to one hour. When your time runs out or your live feed ends, you must share a replay of the live video to your story to prevent it from going away.
The Bottom Line
Don’t be intimidated by live video—let yourself have as much fun with it as possible! Make sure the content you’re providing is relevant and helpful to your audience and that it’s presented in a highly engaging and entertaining way with as few background distractions as possible. Practice a few times; speak slowly and clearly, and try to have fun.