Perspective

Live video playbook: how to leverage live video

Twitter gives marketers, advertisers, and content producers options for reaching audiences they might not reach otherwise, through live and nearly real-time video.

In this guide, we’ll unpack what live video is all about: why it matters; what it looks like; examples of how it works; and how you can leverage it.

Live video on Twitter platforms can take various forms and serve a variety of purposes. If you read part one of this two-part series, you’ll know that there are six reasons why live video matters. Now read how you can use Twitter to make your goals happen.

Periscope and Periscope Producer

At one end of the spectrum, there’s user-generated content captured by a smartphone camera and broadcast via Twitter’s Periscope app or via the Twitter app itself. Once you’re live, anyone on Twitter and Periscope can join your live video and participate in your experience.

Marketers and advertisers can take advantage of the Periscope platform by streaming their own events or by bringing in influencers to broadcast on their behalf. For example, in September 2016, retired tennis champion Andy Roddick’s popular Periscope stream of the US Open, featuring his commentary of the games in real time, was sponsored by Grey Goose and Chase.

Twitter’s Periscope Producer platform enables brands and media organizations to capture high-quality live video on professional-grade cameras (or multiple cameras), while still retaining the audience engagement aspects (such as likes and comments). Louis Vuitton, ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars,” Walt Disney Studios, and TechCrunch’s Disrupt conference are among the brands using the app.  

Premium live content

Then there are live, broadcast-quality video feeds on Twitter.com, on mobile Twitter apps, and on streaming TV devices. Recent examples include broadcasts of NFL “Thursday Night Football” games, which include mid-roll ads, and Bloomberg’s sponsorship of the fall 2016 presidential and vice presidential debates. Cheddar and BuzzFeed are streaming shows on Twitter.

Highlights of live and prerecorded video

Twitter Amplify provides brands and content producers another opportunity to leverage live video. With Amplify, you can create brief video recaps in near real time of live events. The video highlights, such as big moments from the 2016 Summer Olympics, are embedded in Twitter feeds and can include pre-roll advertisements.

Twitter Amplify also enables content producers and advertisers to leverage video highlights of prerecorded programming. For example, the CW network recently began Tweeting video recaps and sneak peeks of some of its programs, with pre-roll ads from Ford. 

Twitter: the place for action and reaction

Since 2006, Twitter has been the go-to news network for engaging in conversations about what’s trending now, whether it’s breaking news, sports, politics, entertainment, or other events.

Today, Twitter’s history uniquely positions it as the platform for both action, in the form of live events streamed in video, and reaction, the responses to those events from Twitter’s global user community. With live video, Twitter is no longer a companion to TV; it is TV. Or, as NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has said: “Twitter is where live events unfold and is the right partner for the NFL.”

Events live-streamed to Twitter platforms can also be syndicated to Twitter partners, which include Yahoo Sports, Sports Illustrated, HuffPo Sports, Time.com, and SBNation, further extending audience reach and impact.

Editor's note: As of April 2017, we’ve updated our product names and video campaign objectives on ads.twitter.com:

Product names:

  • Promoted Video stays Promoted Video
  • Premium Pre-roll becomes In-Stream Video Ads
  • Amplify Packages becomes In-Stream Video Sponsorships

Campaign objectives:

  • Promoted Video becomes Promoted Video Views
  • Pre-roll becomes In-Stream Video Ad Views (Pre-roll)
  • Mid-roll becomes In-Stream Video Ad Views (Mid-roll)