Media brands are beginning to see that while their content generates excitement, all of their audience engagement takes place on external platforms. As a result, companies such as Facebook and Twitter control the audience’s experience — and reap the many benefits of hosting conversations and interactions surrounding content they did not create.
For customers, this fragmented landscape creates a disjointed user experience because they’re forced to constantly switch between applications and risk missing the action in the process. They use one app to consume content, another app to discuss with friends, and yet another app to chat with the broader community.
Recognizing these issues with legacy audience engagement strategies, content creators and media companies are seizing on live stream chat to strengthen both their brands and their businesses. By embedding chat into live streaming media, companies can unify engagement in a highly contextual and engaging digital experience that is equivalent to the stadium experience. As a result, media companies can elevate the audience’s experience and reclaim revenue streams that have always originated from their content.
Content creators and distributors can’t simply flip a switch to participate in this next stage of live content engagement. In fact, the success of Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp, and other platforms has depended in part on media brands outsourcing their content engagement to these already popular social platforms.
But now that those social platforms have matured, it’s more expensive to reach even fewer media viewers effectively, and viewers have to sift through more noise than ever. Now, brands can take lessons about their specific audiences and improve the content engagement experience through their own custom live streaming chat solution. With the right technology, brands can leverage their creativity to support a stronger community and bring new audience engagement ideas to life.
An integrated chat experience represents an opportunity to elevate the user experience, unlock value hidden in the user conversation, and open new monetization opportunities through contextual commerce.
For years, social media has served as the default digital venue for live media chatter, but today its shortcomings are clearer than ever. The headlines concerning data security aside, there are real user experience issues that can’t be ignored.
We already mentioned the inconvenience of switching among different apps for consumption and social activity. But even once a person has reopened an app like Twitter, it can be difficult to find and engage with others who are watching the same content. Hashtag-surfing works to a point, but people can only find a small sampling of the broader community they want to interact with. And when users want to contribute to the conversation, the opposite problem arises: Instead of connecting with a large, like-minded community, it’s more like shouting into the void and hoping that their message reaches at least a handful of their peers.
Ideally, real-time engagement during live-streamed content and events should feel more like sitting inside a stadium, theater, or cafe. A big reason that live experiences are so enjoyable is that when people are surrounded by others who are equally enthusiastic about the entertainment in front of them, the excitement ramps up dramatically. Integrated livestream chat empowers audiences to enjoy thrilling communal experiences. By creating real-time connectivity at a large scale within the context of your own media environment, live chat offers the opportunity to take the live experience to an even more satisfying level.
Imagine yourself at a Paul Simon concert at Madison Square Garden. You can talk to the five or so people sitting around you, but the other 20,000 people are inaccessible (unless you strike up a conversation while waiting for a $10 hot dog). Within a livestream chat experience, however, you can watch the concert from the comfort of your home while seamlessly chatting and engaging with any or all of the thousands of livestream participants as the show goes on. In this new integrated environment, media brands can democratize the live experience while protecting the participating community from the outside noise of irrelevant conversations. While the live experience can’t be fully replicated, broadcasters still have the ability to fuse the best of both the live and digital worlds to reach more fans around the world.
With a dynamic live stream chat solution that is customized to the needs of a unique audience, media brands can deliver a vibrant, engaging live stream experience that keeps audiences coming back to enjoy the next live experience alongside their community.
The social media landscape is fragmented and lacks the context your media platform provides. Live stream chat won’t replace second-screen platforms like WhatsApp and Twitter, but it is the ideal solution for media brands that want to enrich the live stream experience by creating a digital equivalent to the stadium.
So, how can your embedded live stream chat solution deliver a richer, more satisfying experience than traditional social channels and texting apps? By making the digital experience as creative and engaging as the live experience.
Most audiences, whether a tight-knit group of amateur astronomers or a vast legion of Beliebers, have unique characteristics and needs. With creative vision and a powerful, dev-friendly chat framework, you can identify those qualities and discover new ways to serve them within your embedded live stream chat solution. Essentially, you’re able to craft engagements as creatively and with as much valuable context as a live event. Looking to expand the reach of live events and deliver a digital stadium experience on par with the live event? Consider these ideas:
At a live event, commercial breaks are often filled with attention-grabbing diversions to keep the audience entertained. With a dynamic, customizable chat solution, your live streaming solution or event can offer the same engaging experience along with sponsor tie-ins. Instagram currently dominates sports sponsorships engagement by a wide margin — in the NBA, Instagram represents 3.47% total social posts, but creates 91.67% of its engagements. By layering on chat, you can elevate sponsorship engagement on Instagram-inspired posts for sporting events even further.
When celebrities attend an event, the audience might see them wave to the camera. But with live stream chat, celebrities can directly interact with other fans. Imagine if Drake chatted with Raptors fans throughout the 2019 NBA Finals. Role-based permissions and controls can ensure that the spotlight is on the high-profile influencers while enhancing both safety and discoverability.
Your live stream chat platform should support all types of rich content. Use a mix of videos, audio, GIFs, and images to keep your audience enthralled throughout the live stream. A platform that supports a range of rich content also opens the door to additional opportunities for creative media sponsorship opportunities.
Events in the live action can trigger demand for your audience, so find ways to use chat to help your viewers act when excitement is at its peak. For example, when Steph Curry Live stream chat makes the digital experience as creative and engaging as the live event Whitepaper : Livestream Chat 8 drops his 2,974th 3-pointer to become the all-time 3-point leader, the NBA can deliver every viewer a message offering 20% off a Steph Curry jersey.
Find ways to introduce premium, supplemental content from experts that deepen the experience for your audience. Through your live stream chat, directors, actors, analysts, and other insiders can provide real-time insights and added context for a more impactful live stream.
As you can see, live stream chat gives you the opportunity to do more than mimic the live experience. It lets you set the bar even higher.
Businesses across every industry are using data to make smarter decisions. For live media broadcasters, the most valuable data is reflected in the real-time conversations occurring among their audiences. When those conversations happen on external channels, the ability to see and respond to the reaction data is diminished. But when the discussion takes place on a media brand’s live stream chat, that brand can access deeper data analysis to deliver more personalized, engaging experiences.
When conversations happen within your live streaming solution, you gain the insights you need to give your audience the content and live experience they’re asking for. Unprompted, users naturally share how they feel about what they are watching, whether it’s a scene, a joke, or a player. Like traditional social media channels, the live stream chat becomes an open exchange of ideas and opinions.
With live chat data on your side, you can increase the impact of your creative ideas to:
Live chat is real-time data that content creators and distributors can analyze to identify peaks and valleys in audience engagement. Those findings can then be used to improve marketing, distribution, and promotional strategies across the larger content ecosystem.
It’s now clear to content creators and media publishers that embedded live stream chat can play a vital role in audience engagement, analysis, and monetization that external channels like social media and SMS can’t provide. As more and more live stream broadcasters recognize these benefits, they’re exploring their options for customizing, developing, and deploying the live stream chat solution that will best meet their audience needs and business goals.
So what should they — and you — look for in a live stream chat solution?
As the best chat framework for building a custom live stream chat solution, Sendbird checks all these boxes and more.
Explore everything that Sendbird has to offer at www.sendbird.com. If you’re ready to try Sendbird for free, you can create your account here.
Enhance your live streaming experience with live chat and messaging today.