Since its launch in December last year, Facebook Live has presented everyone an opportunity to share a live moment in real time, and this feature has become an important addition to the world’s largest social network. As with other products, Facebook has been pushing people to use Facebook Live, either by inspiring to launch an out-of-home awareness campaign or more directly adding a live button on the app’s homepage. The social network also ranks live videos higher than other types of posts to encourage users to interact and ‘be in the moment’.
Despite all the effort, brands and publishers in Southeast Asia seem to take a wait-and-see approach as for now they don’t produce many live videos as can be seen on the Live video map. Lack of ideas and expertise in creating this new type of content which differs from traditional promotional videos are the main factors that have hampered adoption of Facebook Live in the region.
On the other hand, Southeast Asia’s Facebook merchants who use the social network to showcase and advertise their products are in the forefront. They’re taking advantage of live videos to engage with customers and sell products in new ways.
How to capture the shifting consumer attention?
As 50% of consumers feel increasingly overwhelmed by brand marketing messages on social media, consumer attention and engagement is scarce. According to Facebook, people spend three times more time watching a video when it is live compared to when it is not broadcasted in real time.
With this change in mind, brands should capitalize on campaigns in the format of a high quality live video. Here are three ways Facebook merchants in Thailand are capitalizing on Facebook Live:
1. Host an auction in real time
One prevalent example how the live video feature is being used is to host in real time an auction of new or second hand fashion products such as bags, dresses, or even items like electronics.
The way it works is similar to a typical auction, just when the auction is hosted on Facebook Live, the bids are submitted as comments. When the broadcast ends, the merchant and the winner arrange the details of the payment and delivery.
2. Showcase products and answer questions in real time
A number of merchants also use Facebook Live to demonstrate their products. Customers in the comments section can ask questions about the price or details of the product for the seller to answer.
Similar to hosting a live auction, broadcast viewers who want to purchase products can send a Facebook message directly to the merchant to arrange payment and delivery.
3. Attract viewers with games, prizes, Q&A sessions
Hosting interactive games or quizzes and giving away prizes for sharing a Facebook Live video with friends is also a tactic used in Thailand to attract more viewers and followers.
The owner of cosmetics brand B’Secret Chonnipa Wisedsuranun is a live broadcaster who has successfully leveraged this strategy. One of her Facebook Live videos generated over a million views and almost as many comments.
She uses live video to engage with her customers and build a fanbase by asking viewers to share her live video during which her cosmetic brand is mentioned throughout. To incentivize customers to share the video she gives away prizes like iPhones, cash, gold, and more. This technique allows her to garner a huge amount of viewers and fans in a short period of time.
By doing so, she also creates awareness of her products without paying a dime to Facebook for advertising.
Chonnipa also often uses Q&A games where viewers who answer correctly in the comments section to a question she asks win a cash prize.
Facebook Live provides brands and retailers an alternative way to grow their followers, engage with a wider target audience, and drive sales without directly paying money to Facebook for ads. Businesses that still rely primarily on Facebook ads will eventually experience growing advertising costs due to the nature of auction-based advertising that makes bidding more expensive when there are more advertisers.
In contrary, businesses that can effectively leverage this interactive video format are likely to capture the attention of consumers at a lower cost.
BY KORAVUT PAVITPOK, ACOMMERCE INTERNET MARKETING MANAGER