How Three Brands Are Using Facebook Live

It’s been only a few months since Facebook Live rolled out to the general public, and it’s already seen great success as a live-streaming platform. A staggering 100 million hours of Facebook video are watched every day, and Live videos are being viewed three times longer than regular Facebook videos.

For many brands, Facebook Live offers better opportunities than competitors like Periscope for two main reasons: first, Facebook has been around longer and is more widely used with consumers, so brands can reach larger target audiences. Second, unlike Periscope broadcasts that disappear after 24 hours, Facebook Live content publishes to the poster’s profile as recorded video content after the live streaming ends, resulting in opportunity for further engagement.

To illustrate, here are some of the cool ways brands are using Facebook Live to stream content that promotes brand awareness and engages audiences.

One of the most common uses for Facebook Live is to make breaking news announcements. For brands, this could mean releasing dates for special events, launching the latest products or promoting sales. It’s a great way to give followers an exclusive preview, “You-Heard-It-Here-First” style, which rewards consumers for their brand loyalty.

Lowe’s recently used Facebook Live to announce featured items in their Black Friday sales. Rather than simply reciting the list of products and their new prices (yawn), they went all out in a 38-minute broadcast that featured pranks, puppies and the sibling rivalry of Drew and Jonathan Scott, stars of HGTV’s Property Brothers.

Mystery Box Bonanza” featured multiple rounds of three “mystery” boxes. Two of the three contained pranks, while one had a Lowe’s featured product with a Black Friday markdown. Live viewers had the opportunity to interact directly with the Scott brothers by leaving comments to vote on which box the brothers would open first.

The content was a huge hit with consumers and generated a lot of hype for Lowe’s. Just one day after the broadcast, Mystery Box Bonanza boasted more than a million views, more than 4,000 likes on the company’s Facebook page and several positive comments and feedback from followers.

Back in April, Heineken held a live-streamed Q & A session with its Dutch master brewer Willem van Waesberghe. The broadcast began by answering five of the brand’s most frequently asked questions, then proceeded to respond to real-time questions being left by viewers in the comment section.

The event managed to achieve two goals at once: It not only gave the brand an opportunity to engage directly with their followers, but it also provided content that could be repurposed for later use. Out of the broadcast, the Heineken social team created 15 shorter clips—mini videos that can be replayed for consumers whenever they leave an FAQ on the brand’s Facebook page.

“It’s more vivid than a company website or a text-based response,” Greg Eckelman, Heineken’s head of strategy, says in this Digiday article.

As of this writing, Heineken’s Q & A streamed content has resulted in more than 5,000 views, 60 shares and nearly 100 comments. This may seem paltry in comparison to the numbers Lowe’s generated—until you consider Heineken’s measure of success.

According to Eckelman, “Facebook Live, for Heineken, is more about using an innovative platform to answer specific questions, rather than garnering a certain number of views and likes.” Put another way, quality, it seems, rather than quantity, is the focus. Watch Heineken’s broadcast here.

Part of the beauty of a live stream is that no matter how much planning or preparation goes into its production, there’s always an element of unpredictability, a slightly larger margin for error.

For this reason, the format is the perfect way for a brand to showcase its expertise. Where others might fail in producing flawless results in a single take, a company can use the opportunity to show off their knowledge and the superior quality of their products and services.

Consider Land Rover, the first automotive brand to use live streams on Periscope and Facebook Live to promote their new vehicles—in this case, the Range Rover Evoque.

A live test drive is a fairly risky move for an automotive company that wants to promote the reliability of its products and prompt consumers to the purchasing funnel. There’s no telling what can go wrong, as the end of this live-streamed test drive for the Elio 3-Wheeler can attest to. (RIP, fender.)

For Land Rover, however, the live test drive of the Evoque was a success, precisely because it succeeded where Elio Motors did not—no accidents of any kind, even on bumpy terrain. The camera never blinks, as the saying goes.


Live streaming offers a direct path to engage with consumers in real-time. From bonanza game shows to product demos, the ways that brands can experiment with Facebook Live to generate consumer interest are varied and numerous. Anything can happen once you hit that Live record button. Just remember to have fun with it!

Written by Alex Herring

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