Why the new LinkedIn Live video streaming service is the next big thing
Regular readers will know I’m a big advocate of LinkedIn. I get around 30% of my new business from the platform, which now has more than 660 million global users.
I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea and has come under some criticism in the past for lack of engagement. But LinkedIn has made a lot of improvements in recent years, and I genuinely believe it’s an unrivalled networking tool.
People use LinkedIn in different ways – for lead generation, boosting brand profile, content publication and marketing, recruitment and research, among other things. But for me I see it as an extension of my offline networking, supporting and amplifying all the face-to-face marketing I do through meetings, talks, workshops and speaking opportunities.
One of the most useful and engaging opportunities LinkedIn now offers is LinkedIn Live: live video streaming. This is a much-anticipated development, and is as close as you can get to “in person, real time” interactions. I think it’s a massive step forward for the platform.
Here’s what others think about the new service:
- TechCrunch on LinkedIn Live video
- SocialMediaExaminer on LinkedIn Live video
- Social Media Today on LinkedIn live video
Getting the most out of LinkedIn
If you simply set up a profile then leave it to stagnate, you’re not going to see any real value from LinkedIn. But if you post regularly and really get stuck into conversations – on public timelines and in groups – you will begin to develop lasting relationships with people and extending your network. You can also then begin advantage of every other marketing tool the platform has to offer.
To move straight on to using LinkedIn Live, read on. If you want some guidance on getting going with the LinkedIn basics first, you might find these articles helpful:
- Why LinkedIn needs to be part of your content strategy
- Growing your network on LinkedIn
- Pimping your LinkedIn profile to be loved by LinkedIn and found on Google
- Rocking your LinkedIn content and getting to grips with groups
LinkedIn Live is an unbelievably good tool for engagement
The addition of a live video streaming tool is a really smart move from LinkedIn. It gives the platform – already known as the number one social network for the working world – a way to compete with the social media big guns like Facebook and YouTube.
But it offers a crucial difference. LinkedIn stands out due to its focus on purely professional relationships within a trustworthy environment, where audiences have a different mindset. Still in Beta rollout, you need to apply to use the service, so it retains a prestige that arguable Facebook videos have lost. What does this mean for you? Your live videos – as well as other content – carry more credibility and value for audiences, and can (mostly, although not always!) lead to higher quality conversations.
All the research points to video as one of the most engaging marketing mediums you can use. On LinkedIn, while posts with images get twice as many comments and LinkedIn’s algorithms favour them – videos are a whopping five times more likely to get comments. Compared to text-only posts, they’re three times more engaging. Now those are some pretty compelling statistics.
I’d also suggest getting in on this early, before LinkedIn monetises it (inevitably – or am I being cynical?!).
It’s also great for mobile users
The stats show that 57% of LinkedIn use is on mobile, which means that over half of your audience is checking in on the way to work or tapping away on their lunch break. Mobile users don’t necessarily want to read a long article at these times, but a short, snappy, impactful video could be just the ticket. Think of it like optimising your LinkedIn marketing for mobile, using the most engaging marketing tool there is.
But how do I get started?
The first and most important thing to note is that you have to apply to use LinkedIn Live. It was only launched early in 2019 and is still being tested, so you’ll need to apply to become a live video broadcaster. Once you’re in, it’s time to start making video magic.
Here are some top pointers to remember when dipping your toe into LinkedIn Live:
- You’ll need a third-party broadcast tool so you can go live from your personal profile or your organisation’s page – LinkedIn recommends Sociallive, Restream.io, Wirecast, Wowza Cloud, StreamYard, Brandlive and others. Some of these may come with costs, but most offer free trials.
- Make sure your broadband is strong – you don’t want your connection to cut out half way through. Carry out speed tests before you start.
- Plan a strategy around the live video. Build up some hype beforehand, and carry on the discussion afterwards to really maximise the value you’re getting out of the experience.
- Keep an eye on the analytics for your live video streams, so you can measure the impact you’re having and keep on track with your goals.
Looking to improve your LinkedIn marketing skills? Check out my LinkedIn workshops and training.