Live video is undoubtedly one of the most engaging forms of content in today’s internet. As live streaming became more accessible through developments in technology, it has been increasingly used by brands as part of their digital marketing strategy for a variety of reasons including the fact that live video is more raw and visceral as it is more like a face-to-face conversation for the viewer than a video that is available on demand.

Youtube and Instagram have become excellent channels for brands and businesses for the live video aspects of their digital marketing. Live streaming solutions for events is another avenue where businesses and brands are focusing on as they have multiple benefits for the business like better engagement for the event and other benefits like having a high-quality video recording of the entire live stream of the event which can then be used for other purposes like marketing.

Currently, there are four major platforms for live video streaming – Facebook Live, Youtube Live, Instagram Live, and Periscope Live and all of them are competing to emerge as the winner in the battle for the future of live video. In this article, we are going to take a look at these platforms to take a closer look at their strengths and weaknesses.

What’s New In Live Video?

Social Platforms

YouTube Live

YouTube Live was one of the first platforms to understand the power of live video fully. YouTube live streaming video has been instrumental in the live video strategies for most businesses.

The latest updates to YouTube Live include additional ways to watch live video for the community by introducing features like the ability to replay the comments when you watch a recorded version of the live video in the same manner as they appeared when the stream was live. Other updated features include auto-captioning for videos in English, the introduction of location tags for live mobile video and video uploads and features that are meant to increase the latency and quality of their live video streams.

Facebook Live

Facebook Live streaming has constantly been adapting ever since its inception as Facebook’s take on a live streaming platform. Some of the recent changes in Facebook include increasing the length of live videos to four hours and the ability to broadcast both in portrait and landscape modes.

Other notable changes to the platform include features that streamline the viewer’s experience by providing abilities such as hiding irrelevant comments and the development of virtual lobbies while at the same time improving targeting features by introducing geo-targeting, and introducing the ability to broadcast in a collaborative manner too.

Instagram Live

Instagram Live is one of the biggest live video platforms, and it also has constantly been adapting itself to provide a better live streaming experience for all the users on the platform. Some of the new updates to the live video platform include pushing live Some of the new updates to the live video platform include pushing live videos to the front of the queue of the stories section of the app, which allows users who use Instagram Live streaming to get more reach for their live videos.

Periscope

Owned by Twitter, Periscope was the fist “mobile-first” live streaming platform. It was one of the initial apps that focused on live video and is one of the most popular live-streaming platforms in the world today. Periscope live streaming is one of the most popular channels of live video for brands. 

Some of the important updates for Periscope live streaming includes features like Replay Highlights, which allows you to see automatically generated highlights of your live video stream, embedding live videos onto third-party websites, allowing users to find other uses using phone contacts, and autoplaying broadcasts on the app.

Differences Between The Platforms

Video Streaming for Product Marketing

Even though most of the core features of these live video streaming platforms is the same – in the sense that they allow users to go live and interact with the viewers of the stream, there are differences in the use-cases of the different social media live streaming platforms and what situations they serve best. Sometimes live streaming to multiple social media channels simultaneously is more helpful than of webcasting on a single platform. All together, these platforms can bring magic to your webcast.

Facebook Live Streaming

It is ideal for most general live streams, whether it be staged broadcasts or spontaneous live video from an event. It allows you to have massive reach, create strong marketing messages and experiment and track your live streaming strategy. Facebook Live also allows brands and businesses to create highly targeted live videos for different target audiences which makes it very effective when you’re trying to reach out to a specific target audience.

Periscope Live Streaming

Also known as Twitter Live, allows you to stream live video on the massive social network. It works best for short and spontaneous live videos which are catchy. Whereas Facebook is better for broadcasting full events, Periscope and Twitter Live can be a great tool for streaming live video which is more like news that shows what’s happening rather than full-fledged live programming which is more suitable for Facebook. Read this post to learn how to broadcast on Periscope.

Instagram Live Streaming

Unlike Facebook Live streaming and Periscope Live streaming, live videos on Instagram Live disappear twenty-four hours after the live stream is over. The best Instagram live videos are colourful and casual, which goes along with the type of content Instagram is most well-known for. The most important aspect of Instagram Live streaming is the sense of urgency it creates as the live videos are not permanently stored; this gives your followers more incentive to view your streams as they’ll not always be available to watch. Here is the best comparison of Facebook Live Vs Instagram Live.

Youtube Live Streaming

It has become the standard for finding high-quality live video streams. The best way to approach Youtube live video is to focus on high-quality production values as there is huge competition when it comes to live videos on the platform.

Conclusion

There are a lot of options when it comes to live streaming these days and the four major players are Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Periscope, and YouTube Live. Even though the battle for the future of live video is ongoing, there is no clear indicator of who’s going to win it.

The best strategy, for now, is to use all the channels to their specific strengths and use the services of a dedicated live streaming company to create a holistic plan for any business’ live streaming plans for digital marketing.