This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

May 5, 2019

Why you should, or shouldn't, do live videos on Facebook

One of the very best things that you can do on Facebook is a video. And it's also one of the very worst things you can do. So if you're thinking about doing a video, especially a live video, it's a wonderful idea, but done incorrectly it's awful. I've experimented a bit, and have watched a lot of Facebook videos, including live ones, and I have some suggestions for you.

• Don't just point the camera at your face. Watching a video of your face closeup just makes people cringe. If I were sitting there talking to you, I would look at your face all of the time, but video is different. The very best videos of this type start with an establishing shot of the speaker's face, and then pan away. You can, of course, just narrate what you're looking at (such as an historic view), and talk about it. In a live video a bit of normal human rambling is fine, and it's best. Don't make it sound scripted!

• Keep it short. No more than 30 seconds. Your friends will get a notice that you're live, and they'll watch, but if it goes on and on and on they'll drop out. It's not that they don't like you, it's just that Facebook isn't a place to show long videos.

• Don't turn it into advertising. No one likes an "info-mercial", which is what your live video will turn into if you say, "and by the way, be sure to buy..." That's a dirty trick - don't do it. A live video is no place to trick your friends into listening to a sales pitch. It's a great place to establish that you're a real person, which is valuable both in your personal life and to promote your business.

• Practice making short videos before you go live. Your phone has a camera with a video function - practice. Don't make a live video the first time you do a video. No, it doesn't have to be absolutely perfect and polished, but "uh... uh... hold on... how does this work..." is a bad thing to make your friends watch. Yes, they'll sympathize, but mostly they'll just cringe, and be embarrassed for you.

I hope this helps. If you haven't done your first live video yet, I recommend that you give it a try. Don't try to be fancy, or try to say something important. Show a video of where you're walking. Done correctly, live videos are wonderful. And people love hearing the sound of your voice.

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