Rural Influencers Reach People Through Live Video Streaming
As the world transitions from traditional network television to online video streaming, one aspect of television has, until recently, been conspicuously absent: the live broadcast. While video streaming offers customers the convenience of on-demand choice, it hasn’t been able to offer up the urgency of live sports or breaking news. Today, new initiatives from network television, Facebook, Snapchat, and other online platforms are changing this. Businesses in rural areas can take advantage of these new live features to engage with followers in real time.
By using a tool like Facebook Live or Snapchat’s Live Stories, anyone can establish a live video stream that gives followers a view into an ongoing event. Right now, social media often draws us out of the present. We scroll through posts of things our friends have done and, while we’re actually doing something, we sometimes think more about taking the perfect photo for a future post than about actually enjoying the moment. Live streaming keeps social media users in the present. Much like watching a playoff game on television, a live stream makes viewers a part of the experience.
Live video streaming can dramatically expand the reach of experiential marketing campaigns, like events and sponsorships. For businesses reaching out to rural customers, a live stream connects rural dwellers with events happening in cities hundreds of miles away. A live stream also does the opposite. It helps rural influencers deliver their messages, in real time, to followers all over the world. An event in a remote location, like an isolated farm or the top of a mountain, is, then, suddenly accessible to billions.
In October of this year, for example, a new land vehicle called the Bloodhound will attempt to meet or exceed 1,000 mph. The attempt is meant to inspire young people to pursue science and technology, but most young people won’t have a chance to watch he attempt in-person in the South African desert. In 1997, a successful attempt on the sound barrier was broadcast on network television. This year, a live stream from inside the vehicle will give anyone with access to the internet a chance to watch the historic feat as it unfolds.
For businesses that offer a service, like education, live streaming gives more people direct access to that service. Distance learning makes education accessible to a whole group of new students that want to learn, but can’t relocate to do so. For organizations, live-streaming platforms like Ustream and Skype also let companies connect with remote associates, conducting business as if the two parties were in an office together.
In the past, a television network made a significant resource investment every time it filmed a live broadcast. While high quality production still takes equipment and expertise, you no longer need to spend a lot of money or time to go live. Sometimes all you need is a smartphone. Here are three easy ways to stream your event live to the world:
-Via smartphone: Services like Facebook Live and Snapchat Live Stories are optimized for smartphone. With a smartphone, one person can walk your viewers through your event. Because the production value of a smartphone video is typically low, however, it’s best to have an engaging narrator or a talented director on board to make up for shaky, low-quality video.
-Via webcam: A webcam is low-maintenance, but effective for a spatially static event like a concert or performance. Just set it up facing the stage, establish a live stream, and, essentially, you’re done. It requires no dedicated manpower.
-Via connected camera: There is room for high-quality production in live streams. News outlets have begun broadcasting breaking news simultaneously on the network and on Facebook using internet-connected video equipment.
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