Social media is an integral part of our lives, as we become increasingly mobile, there is a seemingly inexhaustible number of social media networks to choose from. The burgeoning trend in the social media world is the advent of livestreaming. These are live broadcasts that allow viewers to watch and interact with your stream in real time.
Yes, it’s a little unnerving – what if people see you mess something up? What if that annoying partner or coworker interrupts you midsentence, or mid-thought? What if you draw a blank and sit there looking dumbfounded for the entire world (namely your customers if you’re a brand) to see? Well, that’s kind of what makes people like you more – being relatable – and it’s definitely the reason to check out this new technological advancement.
But, which app should you choose? There are currently two companies battling for your support: Meerkat and Periscope. If you’re new to the concept, or in need of additional information, we’ve discussed their independent features, pros, cons, and comparisons between the two below. Hopefully you’ll be able to make the wisest choice for your company (and consumers).
Meerkat was launched in February, 2015 and allows its users to produce livestreaming videos with the click of a button. Most interestingly, is that Meerkat videos only exist in the moment they are being recorded and it’s designed to work exclusively with your Twitter account, integrated into the Twitter API.
Meerkat has a scheduling feature which enables users to gain as many live viewers as is possible on the day of broadcast. You can set a time for your next livestream, and then invite others to watch. When it comes time for a live broadcast, viewers can tap a heart at the screen’s bottom edge and send the creator one like per video. While Twitter has decided to launch its own livestreaming app (Periscope), Meerkat users can still tweet and retweet live videos through their Twitter accounts.
The Meerkat leaderboard is the place to be. This is achieved via a point system that would appear to revolve around likes and live viewers. That said, all videos are tagged #meerkat (or #periscope) on Twitter – so make sure you’ve got an enticing title!
By March, Meerkat had over 300,000 users and claimed to be growing by 30% daily. It has acquired some impressive users too, which include Starbucks and JCPenny’s.
Periscope is another livestreaming app, allowing people to watch live broadcasted content from either public or friend streams. In January, 2015, Twitter acquired Periscope. Therefore, it is now known as Twitter’s livestreaming social app. Twitter’s acquisition of the app increases its likelihood for success in the future.
Periscope users have the ability to save and playback their videos over a 24-hour time frame. In addition, there are fewer distractions on the screen in the midst of a broadcast. Even cooler, is the method of viewer interaction provided. Viewers can post an unlimited number of hearts over the full course of the video by simply tapping their screens. These are then included in the playback!
Since Periscope is a Twitter brand now, it’s included in the Social Graph, making it easier for users to connect with their Twitter followers. The goal then is to get placed in Periscope’s “Most Loved” section, which is based on the number of hearts received during a broadcast.
In the realm of user popularity, studies show that Periscope has surpassed Meerkat. Its playback feature makes it more likely that your stream can be seen and shared. Big names have also jumped on board including GE and Spotify.
Brands are using these live video streaming apps to offer fans behind the scenes looks that regular media can’t always provide. The intrigue of one-time accessible content helps brands engage with audiences in a new way. These apps can benefit your brand in myriad of ways, including announcing a new product or service, product demonstrations, and even exclusive access to speeches and other live events to give access to more followers than live attendees.
Social media is expanding at a rate in which most of us can barely keep up. It’s hard to know what decisions to make and which platforms are best for our companies. However, if you’re considering embracing the livestreaming concept, these two are both viable options. Either way, happy tweeting!