After juggling the logistics of your next event, you check Facebook and receive a notification saying that someone in your network is “live.” You may wonder if this new feature is another gimmick. But what if it isn’t? And more importantly, what if Facebook Live could boost event attendance?

Spoiler Alert: It can!

What is Facebook Live?

Facebook Live lets you broadcast video in real-time to your followers, as well as directly to an event page or group—all from your mobile phone (or tablet). As you broadcast, people tune in and engage with you through comments and likes.

Since its launch in late 2015, a growing number of brands—from Buzzfeed to Martha Stewart—are turning to Facebook Live as a means to engage their audience and grow their business. During the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Facebook Live provided the world with a backstage pass to athletes and opened up a whole new way for their sponsors to interact with customers.

For you and your events, Facebook Live is an opportunity to grow.

The Benefits of “Going Live”

A common myth about live video is that it’s expensive. But according to Amber van Moessner from Livestream, “live video is a worthy investment for many types and sizes of events.” In a webinar on the topic, she explained that livestreaming can be affordable even for small events, and provided hard numbers to make you strongly consider using live video at your next event. Here’s a small sample of them:

1. Live Video is Extremely Engaging: According to Facebook Live, users spend more than 3x more time and comment 10x more when the video is live.

2. Live Video Grows Attendance: 30% of people who watch a livestream of an event will attend the same event the following year.

3. Live Video is Cost Effective: It’s a common misconception that live video is costly, but thanks to tools like Facebook Live, anyone can leverage the technology and see a positive return on investment.

Getting Started With Facebook Live

Facebook Live is easily accessible from your iOS or Android device via the Facebook app. The way it works is simple: just head to your Facebook page, event, or group and instead of typing in text, look for the “Live Video” button. From there, you’ll be prompted to enter a description.

But before you “Go Live!” consider the limitations of your mobile device.

As with all video content, production value is crucial to success. If people can’t see and hear what’s happening, they’re likely to tune out. So refrain from using a mobile device to capture the action on stage. Instead, mobile devices are better suited for giving your audience a sneak peek of your event setup or the behind-the-scenes action backstage.

Here are some tips Facebook gives for getting the most out of Facebook Live:

1. Make an Announcement: Build anticipation by letting your audience know when you’ll be broadcasting. Facebook finds that a 24-hour advanced notices gets the best results.

2. Check Your Signal: If you have a weak cellular or wifi signal, your live video will be choppy or unavailable. So don’t go live until you have a strong signal.

3. Don’t Skip the Description: Facebook Live asks you to create a description before hitting the “Go Live” button. Be sure to write a description that grabs your audience’s attention and lets them know what to expect.

4. Engage With Commenters: After your live video is wrapped, don’t forget to go back through and respond to commenters.

5. Longer is Better: If your broadcast is too short, you won’t give people enough time to tune in. Facebook recommends being live for at least 10 minutes.

Taking Facebook Live to the Next Level

Using a mobile phone to capture those moments off-stage is great, but what if you want to broadcast the big event? Good news, you can!

After Facebook announced it was opening Live to developers, our friends at Livestream were quick to provide a simple, elegant solution. Mevo is a pocket-size camera that works seamlessly with Facebook Live and comes with features that really pack a punch.

“Mevo is a great solution for brands or events on a budget who are just getting started with livestreaming,” says Amber van Moessner from Livestream. “It creates the appearance of a multi-camera shoot, all edited live in real-time on your mobile device. Mevo can stream to Facebook Live or to your own website, allowing you to control the viewer experience.”

If you have the budget to hire a video crew, Livestream’s Studio software enables you to use multiple cameras to broadcast on Facebook Live, turning your event into a production that can rival the Oscars.

To learn more about livestreaming best practice for your event, watch the recorded webinar with Livestream.

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