I recently wrote a post stating that video blogging wasn’t ready to be the sole solution for a B2B blogging. Another form of video that I believe will see an increase in B2B usage is livestreaming. With livestreaming people or companies can stream video in real-time on the Internet and interact with viewers through a chat or Twitter. The most popular live streaming services are Ustream.tv and LiveStream.com.
At this point you are probably wondering why I am going to advocate for livestreaming when I was down on video blogs only last week. The fact is that live streaming video has many advantages over recorded video:
1. Livestreaming video takes preparation time, but no back end editing and production is needed.
2. Live video is embeddable in real-time so that it can be spread across the web as it happens.
3. It creates a stronger emotional connection between the viewer and the host, because the viewer has in put.
4. It can better support lead generation.
How Does Livestreaming Apply To B2B Relationships?
In the patchwork that is B2B content marketing, livestreaming is the missing piece needed to make employees the star. Most B2B companies will say that their employees are the true key to being successful. If you look at most B2B social media right now, the biggest element missing is employees. Social media for the most part is still controlled by public relations and marketing. The problem with this is, if your employee is a leading expert in your industry, then why are you not showcasing his knowledge directly to your customers.
Potential Uses of Livestreaming for B2B
1. Customer Training
2. Press Conferences
3. Customer Interviews
4. Video Q & A About New Products
5. Weekly Briefings From Executives
While there are many more opportunities to leveraging livestreaming video for B2B than the ones listed below I hope that they will give you some ideas. This is a medium that will see growth of use by B2B companies in 2010, partly because the platforms are maturing. Recently Ustream.tv announced you can now stream video live from your iPhone which is the beginning of a trend in mobile live streaming.
Is LiveStreaming Better Than Webinars?
One reason that I think B2B companies will start adopting livestreaming video platforms, is because they will realize that it is often a better presentation than some of the slides and voice over webinars that they are currently doing. Sure some are doing webinars with live video and I would argue that most of the time the live video webinars have better participation and engagement. In the coming years we will continue to see and increase in webinars, but I further believe that companies will switch to showcasing engaging employees through livestreaming video.
Livestreaming isn’t without its issues. The software platforms are still early in development and we need improvements in Internet bandwidth speeds to improve quality and reduce lag times. That being said it is a big sector of opportunity for companies who really care about connecting directly with their customers.
Do you plan on using livestreaming in your communications mix in 2010?