- Facebook has been emphasizing its live video and it’s now given the feature its own tab on the mobile app, taking up the prime center location previously occupied by Messenger.
- Re/code reported that in order to drive content and interest in its live-streaming video, Facebook is paying publishers including BuzzFeed and the New York Times to live-stream content.
- In addition, the social media giant has rolled out new features for live-streaming video including allowing users to stream to select people instead of all their followers, and allowing users to archive live-streams for later viewing.
What does all of this live-streaming activity from Facebook mean for marketers?
For one, even though Facebook doesn’t have an option to include ads in live-streams, advertising is more than likely coming to the feature at some point. Facebook has a history of building content and features that focus first on the user experience without placing emphasis initially on monetization, but then later carving a revenue path for the content or feature via ads. Videos on users' news feeds are an example of this, with sponsored video appearing sometime after videos in general began becoming a part of the user experience.
TechCrunch pointed out that getting users accustomed to watching live-streams and other user-generated videos needs to happen before more video ads can be added into news feeds without disrupting the flow.
But further, Facebook is already touting Live Video's potential for strong engagement. In a statement, the social network said, "from initial data, we’ve seen that people comment more than 10 times more on Facebook Live videos than on regular videos."
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is already an active live-streamer and has very publicly advocated for the feature. The fact that Facebook is willing to pay publishers (it already has been paying celebrities) to live-stream content shows its commitment to the success of live video.
Interestingly, the news comes on the heels of another announcement in which the NFL chose Twitter as the live-stream partner of choice for games this next football season.