Video really is the way to go, and it seems that 80% of followers prefer watching a live video over reading a blog post. Moreover, 82% of audiences prefer consuming live videos over social media posts.
And we’re hoping you’re willing to give live video a chance to further your social media marketing strategy. There are only benefits to be gained, after all, like connecting with your following, establishing your brand, and building engagement.
So, how do you go live on Instagram? And how can you ensure your live video or live stream is successful?
Below, we share everything you need to know.
How To Go Live On Instagram: A Step-By-Step Guide
There are two ways to go live on Instagram. The first way is by using live video, which was introduced in 2016. The second is setting up a Live Room with up to four people, a feature introduced in 2021.
If you want to stream a live video to Instagram via a desktop PC, you’ll need to consider a third-party app like Loola TV.
Going Live on Instagram in 6 Steps
All you need to go live on Instagram is an Instagram account (no surprise, right?) and your mobile device.
- Open the Instagram app on your phone.
- From your feed or profile, tap the plus icon (a plus sign inside a square). You can find this on the top right.
- You’ll now see a screen so you can pick the type of content you want to use/create.
- Swipe over until you see Live.
- Tap the recording icon.
- End the recording by tapping on the X in the top right corner. Then tap on End Now.
Using the Live Room Feature on Instagram Steps
The Live Room feature lets you get more creative with your live streams since you can invite up to three influencers or other guests.
To start your Live Room:
- Follow the same steps as outlined above.
- When you are live, tap Rooms.
- Choose your guests.
- Tap Invite, and your Live Room is ready.
4 Tips To Make Your Live Stream A Success
Following these tips will set you up for success with your live videos on Instagram:
SMART goals are smart for a reason. You will get much better results from your Instagram live video session if you have a goal and plan in place.
While you might think winging it will work, and it may, you are more successful if you’re prepared.
Specific: You could say you want your live video session to be good, but this isn’t specific, is it? How about saying, “I want to increase follower engagement by asking questions so my followers can respond during the session because this will increase my next live video session by X%.”
Measurable: Your goal should be measurable. It could be that you want to have an engagement rate of X% for the live video session or gain Y more followers on your Instagram.
Attainable: You should be able to meet your goal, so it should be realistic. Saying that you want to grow by a million followers may not be possible, but getting 1,000 new followers is much more attainable.
Relevant: The goal you are pursuing with this Instagram live video session should be important to you and your company now. If it doesn’t matter, then focus on a goal that does.
Time-Based: Setting a deadline for your goal ensures you are more focused on attaining it. So, with the 1,000 new followers goal, set the deadline for 6 months from now (for example).
Test the Live Video
Now that you have your SMART goals, it’s time to do a test live video.
You can do a live video test on Instagram on a test account to familiarize yourself with how everything works, what the features are, and so on.
Engage Your Viewers
Live video on Instagram gives you an opportunity to engage with your followers in real-time. More than this, you get to build a relationship and trust with your audience. These are important aspects of brand building.
One way to engage your audience on live video is by having a Q&A session. Another is to ask them beforehand what they want and to meet their expectations.
Other ways are to add comments on screen, extend the conversation past the live video session, and show behind-the-scenes stuff. You can also call out people’s names when you respond to their questions or comments and piggyback off interesting questions or comments.
Create a Map
Create an outline of your video so you know exactly what you want to do, what topics or points you want to cover and when, and for how long you want to discuss each.
If you are interviewing an influencer or thought leader, write down your questions. Think about how you want to introduce the person(s) to your audience and when you want to have a Q&A session with your audience.
If you are doing a how-to, make notes of all the steps. It’s easy to think you’ll remember everything, but becoming camera shy can happen so it’s good to have a guide to follow to help keep you on track.
If you introduce a new product or service to your followers, make notes of all the benefits the product/service has to offer. Also note the features and what you want to highlight.
Having a video map ensures you stay on point.
How to go live on Instagram is easy. It is more important to focus on the preparation you need to do beforehand.
Remember your SMART goals, do a live video test, and create an outline and notes for your video so you can be as prepared as possible. While you are live, make use of the unique opportunity to foster loyalty with your audience by engaging with them.
Happy live videoing!