November 9, 2015 / Melissa Faudree

Live streaming is huge today! I’m sure by now you have probably heard of live video streaming apps such as Periscope and Meerkat. These two apps launched this past spring. Honestly, I figured that none of these streaming platforms would stick around for very long. I thought it would merely be a phase and the novelty would soon wear off. Man, did they prove me wrong! They are going strong.

These platforms are creating large audiences and part of that is because they aren’t treating the app as just a platform. They are using it as a conversation. Who would have thought we needed another way to communicate to each other? Brands are doing so well that they are even creating revenue from these platforms.

Some Meerkat and Periscope statistics:

  • Periscope has over 10 million users.
  • Of the 10 million users, there are nearly 2 million DAILY active users on Periscope.
  • Users on Periscope are watching over 40 years worth of video EACH DAY!
  • Meerkat had over 30,000 broadcasts within their first week of launching.
  • In May, the App Store had Meerkat ranked near 1,200 and Periscope in the top 40.
  • Meerkat had 160,000 users after the first month but Periscope had 1 million users in 10 days.

Last week, I participated in my very first Blab. For those that aren’t familiar, Blab is podcasting platform similar to Periscope and Meerkat. The platform is the newest one to enter the market. It allows 4 people (Blabbers) at a time to participant in a conversation. I like to think of the 4 people broadcasting as those in the hot seat. With the platform, viewers are able to watch and leave comments throughout the discussion. Also, all conversations can be recorded for those that may have missed any part of the discussion.

I think my favorite feature is whoever is in the hot seat (included those hosting) are able to switch out and allow someone else to participate. It can be like musical chairs for video! Often times, I think of video streaming as one person that is doing all the talking but Blab is not like that. Blab gives you more opportunity. Blab also allows you to be authentic with your audience. You can really show off your personality with your followers with live streaming. Isn’t that what people want to see anyways?

During the Blab discussion I had a flashback to my days when I was a student at Kaplan. I got to thinking that some of my online classes had that live streaming vibe. You had your professor, obviously leading your class, and then depending on their preferences you could either see them on camera or just hear their voice. However, the students did not have voice capability, you simply were able to chat. I felt like Blab had a similar feel, except that I didn’t have 4 Blabbers in my classes. I did have the same overwhelming feeling of trying to listen to the person speaking while also reading the discussion going on. I eventually mastered it during my online classes, so I’m sure with more practice I would get the hang of it on Blab.

Since Blab was the first live streaming discussion I’ve participated in, I can’t really compare to any of their competition. But I can say that live streaming has great potential for brands. I know Meerkat, Periscope and Blab are relatively new but you have so many different ways you can use these platforms. Your options are endless. You can get creative as you’d like! The Blab discussion I participated in was with Sprout Social and it was originally supposed to be a Twitter chat. Sprout Social wanted to test out Blab for themselves! I actually thought this was the perfect discussion to be apart of. You had some experienced and some newbies that were leading the discussion.

Ideas for your business to use Blab:

  • Demo a product or service (whether newly released or showcasing another item)
  • Question and answer session (like you would with a Twitter chat)
  • Client meetings
  • Customer support/feedback
  • Podcasts or webinars
  • Tutorials
  • Interviews
  • Hold contests, giveaways or announce specials/discounts
  • Live events
  • Internally for meetings, trainings, etc.
  • Focus groups

Live streaming apps are getting bigger every day! People want to see person beyond the screen. They want to see the real you and these apps are letting you do that!

Does your business use a live streaming platform? If so, what ones and why?

Posted In: Blog, Technology