Facebook Live vs. Periscope

Facebook continues to roll out its live video streaming platform, Facebook Live, which competes directly with Periscope. That makes things interesting. So which one should you use? Or should you use both? Just for clarification…when you go live, people are seeing and hearing everything that is taking place in that moment; it’s real time.

Because Facebook has so many users, it tends to roll out new modifications in batches. More and more people have this feature on their private (friend) page and their public page now. How do you know if you have it or not? Open your Facebook app from your iPhone (not available on the Android as yet), tap on status as if you’re going to write a post, and look for the head and shoulders icon with circles surrounding it (see the image below with the yellow arrow).

Facebook Live

To use it, click on the icon, type in a title or description (make it interesting) then click ‘go live’. The camera defaults to facing forward, but you can turn it to selfie mode before going live by clicking the circular arrows in the top right corner. Now that we have those details out of the way, let’s compare.

Facebook Live Pros

  1. It broadcasts live to your Facebook friends. From your private page, it will also broadcast live to your followers if you set it to ‘public’ instead of friends or friends of friends. Your public page broadcasts to all followers.
  2. It sends a notification to everyone that you have gone live and publishes the title of your broadcast.
  3. You can change the direction of the camera before going live. This may seem small, but it makes things a lot easier.
  4. The video automatically saves to your video gallery on Facebook and stays there for the duration of your Facebook account.
  5. You can edit your video after completion.

Facebook Live Cons

  1. Unless you hit the nail on the head and go viral, you’re really broadcasting to people you’re already connected to. This can, however, still be an advantage when incorporated effectively into your strategy.
  2. It’s not a one click process to save the video to your mobile device to be able to use it on other platforms.

Periscope is also a live video stream platform which is connected to Twitter. It’s an app you download separately from your App Store or Play Store. You can log in with your phone number or your Twitter account. I recommend your Twitter account so you can tap directly into those followers. Here is what the app looks like:


Periscope Pros

  1. You tap into and attract new followers. It’s a great opportunity to expand your network.
  2. You can save the video to your phone’s gallery for future use. Disclaimer: the video quality isn’t perfect, but it’s good enough for re-posting depending on your background and lighting.
  3. It sends a tweet notification to all your followers that you are live. This also taps into another network of people.
  4. You can Periscope to specific people. On Facebook, you can go live to specific groups versus specific people.

Periscope Cons

  1. The video expires in 24 hours. If someone doesn’t watch it within that time frame, the video disappears. I’m not convinced, however, that this is a con. I believe that creating urgency and exclusivity can be advantages when used properly. Comment below if you’re looking for ideas. (By the way, a friend told me you can use katch.me to keep the Periscope video alive longer.
  2. You cannot change the direction of the camera before going live. This particular feature gives me heartburn (smile).
  3. There are some unsavory people who join the broadcast and post lewd things while you’re speaking. Simply ignore them; however, it would be great for Periscope to find a way to prevent that.

Overall, I recommend using both. Going beyond your existing network is how you ensure that your business grows and your brand expands. If you’re always talking to the same people, it will affect your sales and progress. Think globally versus locally. That is my number one recommendation for using Periscope. You attract new and different people much easier than you do on Facebook.

Facebook Live is a great way to get your audience engaged and keep them engaged. Know that they will share your video to their friends, but new followers on Facebook are not as easy to come by as they are on Instagram and Periscope.

I jump on to Periscope and share tips throughout the week, because I’m focused on expanding my brand. I have initiatives this year which require me to go beyond my current boundaries. Recently, however, when I spoke at an event, one of my team members used Facebook Live for the entire thing. It was a great opportunity to give something to my existing audience to keep them engaged. Both are good, but know what your marketing goals are for the next 12 months and then use both platforms accordingly to help you reach your goals.

If you’re looking for more specifics on Facebook Live, take a look at this article by Mari Smith featured on Social Media Examiner.

Suzzette Turnbull is the CEO of Uncommon Marketing and a social media speaker and trainer. Connect with her on Facebook at Suzzette Turnbull and on Instagram, Twitter, and Periscope at @suzyturn. Be sure to subscribe to the website for more social media tips and upcoming trainings.

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