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How to Make the Most Out of Your Livestreams

If you’re working hard to produce a livestream, you want to get as much life out of it as you can. We spoke to Japhet Weeks, the Executive…
How to Make the Most Out of Your Livestreams

If you’re working hard to produce a livestream, you want to get as much life out of it as you can. We spoke to Japhet Weeks, the Executive Producer at Fusion; Katrine Dermody, the Director of Social Media at Fusion; and Geoff Dietrich, the Executive Producer of News Gathering at AJ+, about how top digital media companies get the biggest returns on their livestreams.

Here are their three tips for getting the most out of your livestreams once they’re over:

1. Share the stream across multiple platforms.

Your livestream can live in more than one place. Make the most out of your stream by posting or sharing it to other social media platforms and your website. During a climate change protest, Fusion went live in DC. While that video was live, it was also streamed to Fusion’s “Project Earth” vertical. Fusion’s Gizmodo site also focuses on science and technology, so their producers shared the livestream to the Gizmodo Facebook page. This helped them expand their audience.

Katrine Dermody: We don’t want to force [a livestream] where it doesn’t fit, but we try to place it where it makes the most sense. Before we give the green light to go live, I’m already thinking of where I want this livestream to share and to live while it’s live, which helps it sort of gain momentum….It’s definitely not a one size fits all solution.

2. Continue promoting the videos that will get views even after the stream ends.

According to Facebook’s own statistics, videos that are live are watched three times more than videos that are no longer live. Some events will remain relevant long after their over. Videos that prove to be evergreen can continue to be promoted long after they’re over and will continue to attract viewers to your site.

The Women’s March in D.C. gathered more views after the livestream ended.

Katrine: I can probably guess within maybe 5 to 10,000 views how many views a video will get after it’s done. It’s just informal observation. The Women’s March turned out to be a huge day. So many were people involved, so many amazing strong female speakers. I think there was something electric about the march itself. A stream like that gets a lot more views after the event is over.

3. Reuse live footage in non-live videos.

After your livestream is complete, the video doesn’t have to disappear. You can reuse the same footage in different formats. Live videos can be cut up into a highlight reel with text and graphics to showcase their best moments. You can also make gifs with captions to attract viewers back to the original video as they scroll through their newsfeeds on Twitter and Facebook.

On January 6th, Michelle Obama gave her final speech as first lady. AJ+ was there live with an overall audience of 600,000 viewers. That video was then turned into a highlight reel and AJ+ uploaded it to Facebook and Twitter. The highlight reel received almost 1.5 million views.

When Bernie Sanders showed up at a Dakota Access Pipeline protest in Washington D.C., Fusion took advantage of the strategic vantage point of their livestreamer by capturing his entire speech from only a few feet away. They later made an easily shareable social video out of the footage that was shared on the Project Earth vertical as well.

This clip was created from the Facebook Live footage shot by Storyhunter mobile journalist Armando Gallardo.

Geoff Dietrich: We will often cut down our livestreams into their best moments through our daily production team and then they’ll send those off to the AJ+ social video team.

Japhet Weeks: One night Bernie Sanders showed up to a #NoDAPL Event. We said “Get as close as humanly possible. We want to see the sweat on his brow. Put it on his brow.” The livestream went well. Everybody loved it. We realized we had exclusive footage of Bernie Sanders. So when the livestream ended, we downloaded the Facebook Live video and we started cutting out bits of the Bernie footage. We started publishing those and they shared extremely well throughout all of our different platforms. We think of that live content not only as living and alive, but also as having a life in more produced pieces.

By Josh Futtersak, Storyhunter Writer