Live streaming via Facebook Live was opened to all verified brands at the end of 2015.
Since then, many brands have got involved, not just broadcasters (such as the BBC, who trialled the tool as early as October of last year).
Facebook’s F8 conference revealed that APIs will be made available, allowing the integration of Live into third-party apps.
With lots to look forward to, let’s look at the baby steps brands have taken so far.
Airbnb and Disney
Airbnb’s big campaign, Live There, has seen it partner with Disney on The Jungle Book.
As part of this partnership The Jungle Book’s Facebook page livestreamed interviews from the red carpet at the premiere, where Airbnb had built a treehouse for the occasion.
With platforms such as Facebook Live, YouTube and Periscope making it easier to find an audience for live video, exclusive events like this (featuring celebrities) are an obvious draw.
Chevy’s new electric car was teased at CES back in January 2016.
Product launches are a great use case for livestreaming, where super fans can get the scoop before anyone else.
BuzzFeed has captured the most notoriety with Facebook Live so far, stretching rubber bands over a watermelon until it eventually burst.
As you’d expect from the master of clickbait, this idea was weirdly engaging, playing perfectly to the unpredictable nature of live video.
As BuzzFeed’s own reporting explains, many people tuned in for 40 minutes without quite realising it.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York has used Facebook Live a handful of times already.
From an informal tour of the museum from Fifth Avenue, to live openings (Cornelia Parker’s new work on the garden roof), to more involved exhibition previews, The Met’s early experiments with Live show impressive willing.
The video below shows “Pergamon and the Hellenistic Kingdoms of the Ancient World”, previewed with one of the exhibition’s curators and graphic designers.
The broadcast went out four days before the exhibition opening and in three weeks to writing has had 52,000 views and 1,200 shares.
Benefit goes live every week showcasing ‘Tipsy Tricks’.
Advice on makeup is delivered under the influence (only very slightly). Of course, Live videos can be promoted once they’re finished, and they live on like any other Facebook video upload.
So, for brands willing to fly by the seat of their pants, Facebook Live can add some interesting jeopardy to weekly features.
A tour of the Dunkin’ Donuts test kitchen culminating in the construction of a donut wedding cake was streamed live via Facebook.
As far as I can see, there’s been no further experimentation with the tool in the three months since.
Understandably, continuing livestreaming in BAU requires an already solid commitment to video and enough interesting content to keep people hooked.
This is a fairly difficult proposition for a donut brand, compared to a broadcaster like WWE or Sky. Having said that, 36,000 views is not too shabby.
Embedding was not available but you can click through from the screenshot below.
EA Sports Madden NFL
Madden NFL broadcast live from the NFL draft on April 30th this year.
Big sporting events are bound to be a major use – if not the major use – of livestreaming.
As we know, Twitter already has a deal to stream NFL games this year.
Click to view.
Target helped shoot Gwen Stefani’s new video, which went out live on CBS in February 2016.
Before the broadcast the retailer used Facebook Live to show some behind-the-scenes footage.
The footage isn’t particularly interesting and most of the comments are unrelated Target complaints. Clickthrough below, if you’d like.
The brand is also showcasing some design partnerships with Live, but I couldn’t find them on the page, suggesting they may have been taken down.
UFC, the BBC’s Match of the Day and Sky’s Soccer AM have all used Facebook Live to create additional teaser content.
WWE is perhaps one of the most high profile experimenters.
A whopping 3m have watched Shane McMahon deliver an elbow drop (see comments for much debate on quality of elbow drop).
It’s clear that Facebook Live will afford great visibility for early-adopting brands. The challenge, like everything on social, is how to make it more than just a plea for love from followers.
For more on livestreaming, see the following articles: