Leveraging Live

Hannah Shevlin, Marketing Coordinator at Switchboard Live, and Maggie Norby-Adams, Director of Marketing at AmpLive, will join me to examine how live content can be leveraged for business. We're going to dive into the live ecosystem by discussing trends, successful case studies, and how businesses incorporate live into their marketing strategies.

I’d love to welcome Hannah and Maggie to the Leveraging Live Thinkwire! Can’t wait to explore the live content space with both of you and get both your insight on where we’re at. How about we kickstart this by giving a quick self-intro?
Hi everyone! My name is Hannah and I’m Switchboard Live’s Marketing Coordinator. I joined the Switchboard team at the start of December, and it’s been an awesome journey since. I’m located in our Philly office where I get to work with Rudy, our CEO! I’m excited to chat it up :)
Hi All! I’m the Marketing Director at AmpLive. I’ll link to our site here so you can learn more about us! Kat and I have run a few Thinkwire pieces before so feel free to check those out as well.
So I’d love to kick it off by asking you guys if you noticed any major trends in the live streaming industry. I know Hannah, Switchboard Live, tends to focus on more B2C business whereas Maggie and AmpLive do B2B. Maybe you both could shed some insight in your respective spaces?
I’m at Webinar World right now so my response may be a little impacted by that but I think the number of businesses integrating large numbers of webinars is really exciting to see. I’ve talked to many people today doing hundreds of webinars per year with huge lead gen success.
That must be exciting. Are there any standouts you think are really hacking or changing up the webinar space?
I think On24 is doing a lot to support companies in meeting their pipeline goals. Especially people with global audiences who really benefit from things like “simu-live” streams that can run in different time zones and user-friendly subtitling tools.
Great example. Speaking of user-friendly, Hannah, have you noticed anything on your end? Technologies or companies doing things really well in this space?
I think one of the more common trends we see in live streaming for business is daily/weekly live shows. This time can be used for Q&A, product releases, or just a run down of trending topics. Mashable is a great example with their FB Live show.
Sephora did a FB Live show where they brought in professionals in the makeup/ beauty industry to answer questions submitted by viewers. This kept them watching until the end to see if their question was picked, but it also gave them that exclusive, “once in a lifetime” vibe!
So many other great examples of companies using live video, I could go on forever haha
That’s great! Since you mentioned both case studies are using FB Live, do you find that most B2C companies gravitate to FB Live as their OVP since it’s such a recognized brand? Or is that not always the case?
I definitely see a lot of B2C companies going to FB Live. FB has been around for forever so it’s had time to build that sense of comfort that I believe so many people acknowledge and appreciate. But I hope that the other OVPs get the attention they deserve when it comes to LIVE.
I do see people using YouTube Live, Insta Live, Periscope, Twitch, and so on. They are AWESOME OVPs for live video.. but they may need a little more time to build up that trust before we see creators/ brands using them as their ride- or- die, go- to platform.
I mean, how often do you hear of someone going LIVE and not mentioning FB Live as one of their destinations?
It’s interesting... for B2B marketers I think the OVP landscape is a little more diverse. When people are using webinars or live streaming to bring in professional leads, it becomes more important to have a really professional looking format and certain additional tools.
Haha, when I saw Hannah’s response, I knew you’d jump in, Maggie! I agree-- I think the B2B space is completely different when it comes to OVP brand value. It’s really interesting to see the different values here.
I would say that B2C is still diverse though! You definitely see them going to Instagram or YouTube as well (testing out the waters). I just think that because FB is a great place to start live streaming, it tends to be on a lot of people’s list as a tried and true destination!
I want to ask, really quick, Hannah, Switchboard does platform syndication right? I’d like to know which platforms are most popular creators always are trying to share on. Is it the ones you listed?
Yes! Through our product, Switchboard Cloud, you can share a single live stream to multiple destinations at the same time. I would say that, in this order, the popular channels are FB, YouTube, Twitch, and Periscope.
It sounds like social/community use and brand familiarity are definitely huge factors for creators when selecting and OVP, then. That’s interesting. Maggie, could you provide some insight on what marketers care about most when selecting an OVP?
OVP choice should reflect your goals, budget, and the type of event you’re planning on streaming. People may need to share screens, do simu-live events, chat, distribute externally, scale to large audiences, brand video players, have managed services.... These are all features.
That being said, my question to both of you is, do you have any advice you’d like to give to people who are starting up their first live videos, be it B2B or B2C?
I’d say it’s important to understand what part of your funnel you’re targeting and adjust your promotion and content strategies accordingly. Top of the funnel content should be distributed and eye-catching, while nurturing content can be more technical and sent to your contacts.
That’s great advice! How do handle the nuanced line between technical vs. high-level content? Especially in the vast marketing space-- where some contacts are in engineering and others are in PR?
When I think of technical I think of things like product demos. This would be content that shows you how to accomplish a goal using a tool. Technical content is better for people toward the end of the buyer’s journey, when they’re making a decision about purchasing your product.
On the other hand, I think high-level content addresses strategic and conceptual concerns for knowledgeable audiences. This is useful when your audience is made up of business decision-makers, but can be useful in earlier stages of the buyer’s journey.
This is so useful for me, and I’m sure for many other marketers reading this! How about you, Hannah?
My advice to those who are new to live streaming would be...don’t make it about you! As harsh as that may seem, it really makes a difference when creating loyal viewers and or customers. If the content doesn’t make the viewer more aware, curious, or knowledgeable, rethink it!
Whether you’re releasing a new product, or sharing an event, live streams should provide something valuable to the viewer besides the obvious fact that you/ your brand is awesome and using live video. It’s all about engagement and giving viewers a reason to watch your next stream
Like Maggie said.. know what part of the funnel you’re targeting and strategize accordingly!
Can’t agree more-- offering REAL value to audiences is definitely my motto, and I’m sure Maggie’s as well.
On that note-- I’d love to thank Hannah and Maggie for joining me on this Thinkwire! It’s been a pleasure learning about live and content from both of you and I’m sure we’ll get to collaborate soon.
To our readers: I’d love to give a special thank you for tuning in and we can’t wait to see you soon!