The world is expecting 82% of the internet traffic generated through video streaming in 2020. You shouldn’t miss this opportunity in your marketing. But live streaming is not easy, a professional livestream cannot be just a smartphone, a ring light, and then point and shoot. As the experiential agency behind the Google’s livestream, after numerous hours spent on research and even more hours spent for trial and error to design the Google’s livestream content, we certainly know how to make a good video show work. This livestream playbook will walk you through our experience of how to plan and produce a professional live-streaming event.

Think small for your big show

First of all, adjust your mindset. Even you have a big idea, the space and the attention given to you on livestream are tiny. The majority of your target audience are most likely to watch livestream on a mobile device. You do not have a big screen estate to capture their attention. So, bear in mind that you are designing the content for mobile screen, not for a big stage.

As a business, adopting livestream in your marketing communication can be very effective because 80% of consumers would rather watch a live video than read a blog. To begin planning a livestream for your business, follow the marketing rule of thumb: Be On-Brand. With the limit screen estate, you need to think of how to present your brand assets side by side with the speaker in a right proportion. Also, think of your livestream event as a product placement marketing, in which your brand and products are featured in the content that targets a large audience. Almost everything can be branded in your livestream including the mic!

Planning a livestream or a pre-recorded video stream are very different. To manage a livestream is actually similar to planning an event. You have at least two timelines to manage: (1) content design (2)  tech & event logistics.

Remember, when you are live-streaming your business, you are reaching out to your target audience on a small screen. So, be on-brand, simple and concise, let go of the clutter.

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A digital steroid for sales

We also designed a social commerce livestream event for the cosmetic brand Make Up For Ever in Shanghai (eventually we couldn’t launch the show because of the covid-19 lockdown). The experience of preparing the show was truly mind-blowing. In China, live-streaming is taking over the whole digital space. Business in China, particularly the b2c sector, are fully adopting live-streaming as a point of sales. Live-streaming in China is like a digital steroid booster for the TV home shopping network in the past. The pace and the reach are way faster and wider to trigger the pulse of the shoppers.

Live streaming is actually a perfect hybrid in marketing. The Make Up For Ever show was planned as a livestream event at a shopping mall. The goal was to engage the footfall at the mall while amplifying the product message over the web via live-streaming. The design aspects combined all the digital and spatial elements for a show. Besides the usual event planning, we also developed a screenplay to connect the content on the ground to the audience in the digital space. Imagining a consumer journey like this will be all over the marketing touch points and is truly 360° degrees on-ground and online. Not to mention with the KOL effect to drive the social commerce, the outcome can be very rewarding!

It is important to set the stage

Your stage of a live-streaming event is essentially the online media and you probably only have a few choices.

To understand which media should be chosen for your livestream, we have collected some statistics for you:

 

In May 2019, YouTube Live videos were watched for 284 hours. This was a monthly record for YouTube.

Non-gaming content has been a major growth driver for Twitch representing 11% of the hours watched in December 2019 compared to 8% in December 2018.

In Q2 of 2019, Twitch users watch 2.9 trillion hours of live content.

Twitch is actually bigger than YouTube and over 50% viewers are Asian. Twitch is predominantly for the eSport content.

70% of consumers prefer to watch live video on YouTube over other platforms.

In Q1 2020, Twitter hosted more than 1,200 live-streamed events.

Facebook Live Stream saw a 330% increase in searches between 2016 and 2018.

One in five Facebook videos is a live broadcast.

The number of livestream users reached 560 million in China as of March of 2020 accounts for 62% of the country’s total number of internet users.

The number of people watching livestreaming e-commerce events in China had reached 265 million in March 2020.

In Feb 2020, Taobao live saw a rise of 110% in user numbers.

In China, other than the market’s key live-streaming players such as Tmall, WeChat, Weibo, the growing star is Bilibili which is the number 1 online entertainment platform for the Gen Z in China.

Furthermore, not all the video streaming media provide live-streaming service. If you are planning a livestream event in Singapore or Hong Kong, you probably do it on YouTube or Facebook for the reach and visibility reasons. And then different video streaming media have different requirement for streaming the content. As a wise choice for good result and quality, you might want to talk to an experienced agency like Mills who can strategize a plan to produce your livestream event.

Embracing the new Phygital era

The marketing paradigm has once again shifted for customers and brands. You can see from the above Google trend, less and less people are interested in search engine and then live-streaming is far more popular than social media. If digital marketing plays an important part in your marketing mix, then to move along with the trend of live-streaming seems to be wise.

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At Mills, we continue to improve our capability of the livestream production. We can customize different scenes and themes at our studio in Hong Kong and Shanghai to suit different marketing and branding livestream events. We believe live-streaming has created a movement in marketing. It fills the gap in the marketing journey between on-ground and online. As an experiential agency, we are very fond of producing livestream event because it elevates our creativity. For marketers, live-streaming has a lot of untapped potentials to improve the return on marketing spending.

The future of marketing looks good. We pledge to commit our creativity to make it even better.

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