How brands are using Facebook Live

Roughly a 4 minute read by Georgia Davies

First things first, a little introduction. Facebook Live is a live stream where people and brands can publish videos in real-time. Viewers are able to respond using the 6 different reactions and comments, whilst the broadcast is happening. This has caused live streaming apps such as Periscope to take a back seat, with Facebook Live having the advantage of being built into the most popular social network there is. People can watch live videos in their newsfeed, and also get directly notified when a person/page they follow starts live broadcasting. As there is no option to boost live videos using advertising spend, only to boost a finished live video retrospectively, it’s pretty much the only way to get high organic reach on Facebook without any ad spend whatsoever. So of course, we had to try it out...

How did we use it?

We ran live videos on Beefeater, Brewers Fayre and Yorkshire Tea. Our Beefeater live video was steak related (obviously), asking ‘how do you like yours’ with different reactions representing rare, medium and well done. When users voted using a reaction, the video updated to show a live scoreboard. We also did a 'which is the best British dish' live video for Brewers Fayre, and a 'choose your brew' scale for Yorkshire Tea.

It’s safe to say we were blown away with the results! For the Beefeater live video, we reached 500k people, with 75k video views in total. Our engagement also skyrocketed, with 10.1K post clicks and 7K reactions, comments & shares. The reach, views and engagement were all significantly higher than industry benchmarks, which is especially astounding considering the live videos had absolutely no ad spend boosting them.

This is an example from one of our clients which highlights the spike in engagement caused by live video content

Plot twist

However, like they say, good things don’t last forever. Facebook decided to end our fun and implement a change in the terms and conditions where you are now unable to use reactions as a voting mechanism. Boooo.

But all is not lost; this got us thinking of bigger and better ways we can utilise live video, without breaking the rules. Challenge accepted…

Fresh ideas

We stumbled across this lovely Boohoo example, which avoided the issue of using reactions by simply not focusing on them at all, and turning their attention to the comment section. Their live video consisted of a question at the bottom of the screen, and a one minute countdown clock. A small picture on the right side of the video showed the item of clothing/footwear that was up for grabs if you commented the correct answer to the question, and were chosen as the winner. On the left side of the screen was the profile picture of the winner of the previous question. This fast paced competition kept people engaged for a prolonged period of time, as they’d continue waiting for the next question in the hope of winning a prize. The live video ran for an hour in total, achieving a staggering 385k views. Not bad!

Facebook Live is a fantastic way to get high reach, engagement and brand visibility without any advertising spend. In a time where algorithms make brands struggle to get their post seen by even their own fans, this highlights the importance of Facebook Live in any brand’s marketing strategy. Facebook’s recent change in the terms and conditions highlights the steps they’re taking in reducing the freedom of creativity with Live Video, so our advice would be to get on the bandwagon while you still can!

Like what you see? We can do this for you! Get in touch with the team on 0113 457 4090 or