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Live stream chats offer valuable marketing insights

Live streaming offers a radically different experience for audiences and content creators compared to traditional on-demand video. Live streams create a sense of urgency as viewers want to be part of the experience, and for many, the chance to interact with other users and creators in real time is a big part of the appeal.

Whether you're streaming on the big platforms like Facebook and YouTube or through your own custom website, that little chat window on the side of your screen shouldn't be ignored.

Paying attention to what people are saying or asking for feedback can improve your live stream while it's still happening. You can also take the opportunity to answer viewers' questions and you could even make more sales. Here's how.

Building a community

Streaming chats have more in common with live messenger apps than the comment sections below traditional on-demand videos. Rather than leaving a message and hoping someone will notice some time in the future, live stream audiences are involved in a dynamic conversation.

Whether you're webcasting from a studio or event streaming, this sense of community can enrich the experience and make people more eager to keep returning to your channel in the future – especially if you acknowledge the chat from time to time and help your audience feel involved.

Real-time feedback

Live chat isn't just for the benefit of your viewers either. Live streaming generates 10 times more interactions than on-demand video content, according to Facebook, so it can also be the best place to source honest, timely feedback from your audience.

As well as monitoring what people are saying, you can ask what people think about your channel or your other products and services to get instant feedback. This could be invaluable for continually improving or adjusting your offering and refining your strategies to meet user demands.

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Generating leads

If you want your viewers to make a transaction – whether it's a purchase or just signing up to your newsletter – the immediate and personal nature of live streaming can give a boost to leads and conversions.

If people want to know more or have questions before they continue, you can address these issues as soon as they're raised in the chat. Fast response times make for an improved customer experience, and nothing is faster than live.

When you can answer customers' queries and break down their barriers while they're still interested and engaged, they're more likely to convert than if they're waiting for your email and seeking out other options.

Monetising chat

Depending on the platform you're using, and how successful your channel is, chats can also generate revenue in their own right. Features such as YouTube's Super Chat allow users to pin comments to the top of the chat where they'll be more visible, for a price, similar to Twitch users 'cheering' comments by tipping in bits, the site's virtual currency. The Streaminghouse custom web page option allows you to add any number of turnstile/gateway options to your streamed content.

To find out more about how live streaming can deliver real rewards for your brand and how to monetise your webcasts, download our free ebook.

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