Facebook and Instagram have been killing the livestreaming game, and now, LinkedIn is joining in on the action.
LinkedIn just announced the launch of LinkedIn Live, their new broadcast streaming video service and their answer to Facebook and Instagram Live. Similarly, LinkedIn Live will allow users to stream anything at all in real time, including conferences, product announcements, interviews, and more, directly to their audience.
It’s another way for LinkedIn to capitalize on video, which has been their most successful paid content type to date. The ability to hyper-target audiences based on job title and location helps, making video ad ROI huge and boosting their commitment to new forms of video on the platform.
It’s a strategy that’s helped their competitors, too – Facebook Live videos typically see six times as many interactions as regular videos and their Live broadcast watch times have quadrupled over the last year. And considering they own Instagram and launched Instagram Live, it’s a feature that’s paid off big for them.
But how will LinkedIn Live do and should it even be on your radar? We’re breaking down everything you need to know and giving you our tips and tricks for success using this latest tool.
How does LinkedIn Live compare?
There’s obviously one big difference between LinkedIn and most other social platforms: the audience and their state of mind.
LinkedIn caters to a much more professional audience and is a much bigger networking tool than it is just a plain social tool. While you might connect with friends and family on Facebook and Instagram, you’re more likely to connect with colleagues, bosses, and industry leaders on LinkedIn. And that carries over to how you’ll use LinkedIn’s livestreaming tool.
LinkedIn is banking on users using the streaming service to communicate professionally, continuing to distinguish itself from its competition. Instead of showcasing personal content, like makeup tutorials or your average daily video updates, LinkedIn Live content is likely to feature question and answer sessions, live events, thought leadership and expertise, industry forums, professional interviews and tutorials, and more.
LinkedIn shared a few types of video examples they saw perform well during their invite-only Live launch, including startups showing off their new headquarter spaces, special recruiter interviews, and event organizers interviewing speakers following their sessions.
Keep this in mind and think of creative, professional ways to use the new service. Maybe you can feature an employee spotlight regularly. What if you let your audience in on your recruiting efforts? Putting on a fun corporate event? Share it on Live! This content wouldn’t perform well on YouTube or Facebook since those users aren’t looking for a company insider’s work perspective, but that’s the exact content your LinkedIn followers want.
Should you use LinkedIn Live?
A better question: is your audience active on LinkedIn? If so, then you’ll probably see a high return from LinkedIn Live.
Most B2B companies and entrepreneurs see high success rates on LinkedIn. Straight-to-consumer brands, like Nike or Yogurtland, probably don’t see a lot of action on LinkedIn, though. If you’ve run any video ads or even posted high-performing organic video updates, then our best guess is you should definitely utilize Live.
According to LinkedIn, video ads earn 30 percent more comments per impression than non-video ads do, and members spend three times as long watching video than they do with static sponsored content. Depending on how you’ve seen other forms of video content work on LinkedIn, livestreaming is the next natural progression.
LinkedIn Live is still in its beta testing phase and remains invite-only. But it won’t be long until it launches for everyone. Meanwhile, do a little analytic work. Take a look at your audience on the platform and your LinkedIn resource allocation. Does your audience respond to your posts? Do you have a growing audience? Do you have the time and resources available to create Live content? The answers to these questions will determine whether or not LinkedIn Live is right for you. But remember: even if your answer to these questions is no, that might be because you don’t have a LinkedIn strategy in place. Test posting some content and see how it does. You won’t know what opportunities you’re missing if you don’t try.
6 Tips and Tricks for an Amazing LinkedIn Live
We know, we know. LinkedIn Live isn’t available to everyone yet. But we want you to be ready when it is, and this list is the place to start! With these tips, you’ll know how to approach your Live strategy and create great, engaging content that’ll raise your brand awareness and maybe even earn you some sales.
1. Keep it simple!
One camera and just you or you and another person should be more than enough for an engaging piece of live video. Don’t try too hard or get too complex when it comes to your live content. Keep it simple – the simpler and more straightforward your content is, the more engaged your audience will be.
2. Test first.
You don’t want to launch almost anything without a proper dry run or test. Same goes for LinkedIn Live! Before announcing your first ever, super awesome streaming video, test yourself! Make sure you know how to use the platform and that you have plenty of things to talk about.
3. Don’t skimp on quality.
It’s a live video, which means you’re likely to just point your phone at your speaker and tap “Go Live.” Don’t fall for this trap, though! Before you go live, test your setup, your connection speeds, your camera angles, your lighting, and more. A slow internet speed could make your video lag, and the sun’s glare could make you unrecognizable on camera. It doesn’t take much effort, but keeping these things in mind can help boost your video’s quality and your brand’s overall impression.
4. Engage your audience.
Engaging your audience is a crucial part of livestreaming on social media. Your audience will be giving you their feedback in real time, so ask them questions, address them directly (by name), and respond to comments as much as you can. This not only gives you more airtime, but connects your brand personally with your audience.
5. Is longer better?
We don’t know what the max Live video length is yet, but something in the 10-30 minute window is probably optimal. The top performing Facebook Live videos typically run about 15-20 minutes, which is likely to mirror performance on LinkedIn. Depending on the depth of the content you’re providing, longer might be better; but again, test various lengths to see which your audience is most responsive to.
6. Have a CTA.
It doesn’t have to be a hard sell, but telling your audience what you want from them is crucial in measuring the success of your live video. It can be as direct as “Click the link in the comments below” or as soft as “Tune in next time” – but promote some kind of action so you keep your audience engaged after your broadcast ends.
Next, you wait. After LinkedIn Live launches to all users across the U.S., you’ll start seeing more live content popping up on your feed – we’re guessing in the next three to four months.
According to LinkedIn:
“We’re currently piloting live video streaming with a few broadcasters, so the feature isn’t currently available to all members. After a trial period, we’ll open applications for members and Pages to become broadcasters on LinkedIn.”
The good news is, while the trial period continues, and even as you see the first few Live videos drop, you can pick up on patterns and tips for what works and what doesn’t. You’ll begin seeing how industry leaders are using the service and what their recommendations are. You might even get a few new ideas for what kind of content you can launch.
And if you want to start practicing your Live broadcasts on Facebook or Instagram, we won’t blame you.