State of Inbound 2017: Live Video for Startups

Nikita Smits by Nikita Smits   16 May

Every year HubSpot releases the State of Inbound Report, which benchmarks the goals, challenges, and priorities of marketers around the world. The report has invaluable insights on current inbound marketing trends.

Everything we do when we work on a marketing strategy for a startup has to be backed up by numbers. We set goals and we don’t do anything without making sure we can measure our results. We love reading the State of Inbound as it gathers feedback from over 6,000 marketers who are trying to do the same. Their collective insight is valuable when considering future sales and marketing strategies.

State of inbound 2017

One of the top priorities for marketers is growing traffic to their website. When we zoom in on inbound marketing priorities in reaching their goals, marketers mention growing their organic presence and content distribution or amplification. The type of content they mention is interactive and visual content.

Video to disrupt, carefully.

When I think about visual content that gives you a strong boost in organic reach, my mind jumps to Facebook Live. Two constant disruptors in the digital marketing space are video and social. There are plenty marketers who have seen results from their Facebook Live streams but it might be time to take this effort to the next level and fully optimise your efforts.

Here are some comments from marketers who completed the state of inbound report:

“We’re moving towards more live videos and video content on social media and adapting our approach to be less ‘in-your-face’ and more subtle to acquire conversions.”

“We’re going to have a vast increase in video and reduction of outbound email. Video means we’re taking even more time to foster lasting customer relationships in a way that’s really difficult to scale (but super important).”

“We’re responding to people’s desire to learn online through video as opposed to face to face.”

It seems that C-level executives have a slightly higher focus on Youtube but individual contributors, the marketers on the front lines, prioritise Facebook Video.

Results from Live Video

Live is one of Facebook’s newer features. Because Facebook has seen a steady decline of individual contributors creating original content this feature is actively pushed to their users. We saw the same with organic reach on a video posted directly to Facebook versus the reach you would see when sharing a video hosted elsewhere, for example a Youtube link.

Have you noticed that you get a notification every time a contact or a page you follow starts a live broadcast? Not only do your followers get a notification but the post itself will be prioritised in the Facebook algorithm and show at the top of your followers Newsfeeds.

Now as with all your inbound tactics, keep it relevant. Just as with emails, you only get so many chances before a contact decides you aren’t worth their time. Consider what topics are relevant to your audience. Are you unveiling a new product that your customers would like to get their hands on? Are you listening to an amazing speaker at an event? Share it live. Be careful to not abuse your reach and focus only on self promotion. We talked about the cocktail party rule before, make sure you’re fun to hang out with!

How to run your Live Video

Getting your Facebook Live video up is as simple as uploading a photo of your cat. Really. You should however put some more thought into preparation and execution in order to get the most of  your broadcast.

Before you go live:

  • Promote! Both on personal and the company page. If people engage, see if you can leverage their comments or questions during the broadcast.
  • Consent, check in with people who'll be in the live broadcast and let them know it's being used on the company profile page.
  • Get someone with a steady hand to hold the phone, check lighting, background noise and your network connection before.

When you start the broadcast:

  • SEO: when starting the broadcast, create a short description that works for both humans and algorithms (relevant keywords).
  • When you start, introduce yourself, the company and tell people what is going to happen/who is there and how long you plan to broadcast. Encourage people to ask questions and leave comments.

After the broadcast:

  • The post will be available on your timeline so optimise it. You can change the thumbnail, add or change the location and date, provide a longer description, and select a category. Nobody is sure how Facebook’s video search function will evolve, but these common-sense measures should help your video get discovered.
  • Check how your video performed. You’ll be able to see the total number of people who watched at least a portion of the video, along with a running count of how many viewers you had at different points in time which can help you experiment with a next video.

What does your social strategy look like today? Have you considered adding Facebook Live to your list of ‘attract’ tools? We’re looking forward to seeing more of your Live Video’s pop up.


Topics: Inbound Marketing, HubSpot

Nikita Smits

Written by Nikita Smits

Marketing strategist and GDPR specialist. Nikita was one of the founding members of BusinessBrew but is currently working as a digital marketing specialist at a Copenhagen startup.