Maybe you’ve noticed all of the alerts, letting you know one of your friends is live on Facebook or Twitter. Social media platforms have been rolling out their live streaming feature over the last year. For these platforms, it’s a great way to strengthen their hold on users and generate revenue.
Online Video Evolution
It’s important to understand why the live stream is the future. For instance, YouTube in 2015- generated over 9 billion dollars in revenue. More than a billion people are using it across the world, and the site sees over 4 billion views every day.
Facebook’s numbers are similar, and videos played a big part in that. Facebook sees 8 billion video views every day, from its 500 million users. Like YouTube, Facebook has begun to slip ads in videos, offering stronger results.
So, why is it that social media platforms are turning to live streaming, rather than encouraging users to push video content? Quantity, of course. Adults, on average, consume over five hours of video every day. One of those hours is on a digital device. The actual number of brands and people that are producing these videos is a tiny fraction of those watching. The live stream changes everything.
By allowing its users to create streams in real time, the stigma suggesting that videos have to be highly edited and produced is gone. This allows people to share, thus generating revenue.
The Live Streaming Platforms
There are plenty to choose from, though the most notable are Periscope, Facebook Live, and YouTube Live.
Periscope – its owned and run by Twitter, and it integrates seamlessly with the platform. Over 10 million people are using it, and to date- over 200 million hours of video has been broadcasted, which is roughly 350,000 hours every day. Users can live stream from mobile devices and then put it out on Twitter.
For anyone who has ever been on Twitter, you’ll know that Periscope has captured several big news stories. Users have captured police brutality unfold, sharing it live with millions of users, as well as the deadly terrorist attack in Paris.
Facebook Live – it’s hardly a surprise that Facebook got on board. It started out as a Facebook Mention feature but has been opened to everyone, including Pages for brands. Users can take advantage of their own equipment and broadcast live to their page.
Facebook has taken all of the best features of the various live social media platforms and pulled them into their offering.
YouTube Live – it’s the birthplace of the online video. It strives to bring all kinds of videos to over a billion users. YouTube Live allows users to easily aim, shoot, and post their live content.
As an added bonus, YouTube has struck a deal to live stream the UEFA Champion’s League final.
How It Can Change the World
It’s already changing social media, but how can it change the world that we live in? It offers small businesses the opportunity to share insights into their brands and services. Those in the arts can broadcast their work and get to know their followers. Fashion designers can showcase new lines. Perhaps, the biggest aspect of it is how it can capture news stories as they unfold, offering millions of user’s access to news as it happens.
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