People Are Consuming Live Video Content More Than Ever. Here's Why

Business.com / Marketing Strategy / Last Modified: December 13, 2017
Photo credit: panuwat phimpha/Shutterstock

In four years, live video will make up 80 percent off all consumer internet traffic. Here's why live video is so appealing for so many.

Whether it's a product spotlight on QVC, a product placement in reality TV shows, or commercials aired during live sporting events, companies have used live video to sell products for years. This time-tested method has moved online in a big way recently, and entrepreneurs and businesses now have more tools than ever to offer a live experience to their audience.

"Going live" not only helps your customers connect with you in real time, but it's gradually becoming absolutely necessary for many ecommerce brands. To understand more about how important this medium is, consider these statistics:

  • In four years, video traffic will make up 80 percent off all consumer internet traffic. Of that, 13 percent will come from live video.

  • Using the word "video" in an email subject line boosts open rates by 19 percent.

  • Live video is more appealing to audiences: 80 percent would rather watch live video from a brand than read a blog, and 82 percent prefer live video from a brand to social posts. 

Why do people prefer live videos?

  1. Live videos offer authenticity. It gives viewers the sense of being there with you or "behind the scenes." Today's consumers are bombarded with half-truths on nearly every marketing channel they interact with, which explains consumers' increasing distrust of information, brands and government.

    Businesses selling products need to work harder than ever to build trust with would-be customers. Trust is one of the most important factors in succeeding with online sales. With a simple live video, you can build trust with your audience and connect with them in a way that feels more real than a regular post or a well-produced video on your site.

  2. Customers feel involved! Some live video platforms offer comments, reactions or other ways for viewers to interact with the broadcaster instantly. For businesses, it's a fantastic way to gather instant feedback, and regular live video can be a great addition to your community-building efforts.

  3. Fear of missing out. Some brands are effectively using live video to offer exclusives to their engaged users, but even if you're not hoping to do that, the psychology here is still powerful. People want to be "in the know" and involved. The fear of missing something is strong enough to push people to drop what they are doing and tune in.

    Watching a video that is no longer live just isn't the same experience. Viewers know they are not experiencing it at the same time as others, which makes it less of an experience and more of a solo act of consumption – something we all get plenty of.

As you consider implementing live video, assess how your company will use it as part of your marketing strategy, as not every platform is ideal for every goal. Major platforms like Facebook or YouTube tend to provide a very general live video offering, but they fail to drive actual sales within the experience, so a more targeted platform with more customization options may be best for you.

Before you jump in and try live video, it's important to understand the underlying reasons people are so ravenously consuming live video. Mastering these drivers will allow you to design the right campaign for your brand and execute a winning live video campaign.

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