Instagram Live VS. Facebook Live l Showdown

Everywhere we turn right now, we’re seeing notifications that profiles we follow are going live on social media. Facebook and Instagram live are the newest trends that are the leader in many other social media platforms to develop their own in-app broadcasting. They are highly popular among millions of users — but what marketers or even small businesses haven’t really understood is how they can be used not only for personal purposes but also to grow your brand.

Let’s take a closer look at these features and talk about the best ways you can get great results from both platforms. Also, which one is better depending on the purpose!

Similarities between Facebook and Instagram:

  • Both give users on-site and push notifications (if enabled) that a brand they’re following is going live

  • Both tell the video’s creator how many people are viewing the live video in real-time

  • Both allow viewers to engage with the video as it’s happening, and can leave comments or like it. The video creator will see this as they’re making the video, so they can interact in real time

  • Both are actual live-broadcasts happening in real time, shot with the in-app cameras.

Both platforms are so similar but have so much overlap that it is easy to expect that Instagram Live would be the same as Facebook’s since Instagram is owned by Facebook and all. Despite those facts, their live video features are pretty different. While both can increase engagement and build your social following, they must be used uniquely.


What is Instagram Live and why use it?

It is an effective channel for reaching your audience in an interactive way including creating better more authentic content for posting.

Photo by  Hans Vivek  on  Unsplash

Photo by Hans Vivek on Unsplash

  • Increase Visibility: With Instagram’s new algorithm, your content may not always get the attention it deserves. Instagram Live increases your visibility as it sends push notifications to anyone and everyone who follows your account.

  • Increase Engagement: Imagine having your questions answered directly from your favorite Instagram influencer, celebrity, or even brand? Instagram Live increases engagement by bringing followers closer to your real-life.

  • Build Relationships: Whether you’re using Instagram Live for answering questions, revealing parts of your life, or for just chatting with your followers, each time you appear on a Live story your audience is building their relationship with you.

  • Develop Brand Identity: This relationship turns into a brand identity. Instagram Live can help your brand develop its identity and share it with the Instagram community.

Your Live broadcast should bring viewers something extra special that they can’t get from any other Instagram account.

Examples of how you can do exactly that:

  • Go Behind-the-Scenes: Instagram Live can make viewers feel like they’re actually there with you, doing a makeup tutorial or on a concert tour.

  • Feature a Special Guest: Reach out to influencers and/or brands that would be interested in doing an Instagram Live takeover.

  • Question and Answers: Using Instagram Live to answer questions is an awesome tactic for directly engaging with your followers. It shows that you care about what they have to say and that you’re approachable.

What is Facebook Live and why use it?

It is a live video streaming feature that allows you to broadcast a live video out to your audience through your company page or personal profile. These Live videos experience 3 times the engagement than of typical videos shared on social media, with millions of users tuning in around the world.

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  • Promote Before You Broadcast: While most of the time we try to follow up with consistent promotion, it’s important to remember live videos are more like an event for our audience to experience over and over again. In other words, you need to generate interest before the experience if you want to get the engagement.

  • Always be Responsive: The live comments and reactions are part of what makes the experience so engaging to people. It feels more like a two-way conversation when you’re responding directly to their questions in person. That’s why Facebook Live drives comments at 10 times the rate of non-live videos. One of the most powerful ways to increase engagement online is to actively respond to comments in real time as you broadcast.

  • Be Likable: One of the most important tips to remember is this is your chance to really connect with your audience. In other words, you’re not trying to market yourself obnoxiously or sell a product but you are trying to build relationships that lead to longer-lasting impressions. When you’re ready to go live, make sure you’re relaxed, smiling and feeling confident.

If you’re trying to raise brand awareness, get more leads in the door, or increase interactions with your current customers, Facebook Live is the tool you should be using. Below are 5 ways you should be using it to your advantage:

  • Connect with Your Audience: Do you ever feel like your audience sees you as a corporate stuffy robot, overdone advertisement or an attention seeking millennial? Well, there couldn’t be a better way to connect with your followers and potential customers than a live streaming video. It’s essentially like meeting your followers in person, since the event is happening “face to face” and in real time.

  • Showcase an Event: This is a great way to broadcast events and connect with your customers or leads who weren’t able to attend. As long as you have a strong internet connection and the permission to stream the event live, you should absolutely do it!

  • Question and Answers: Same as with Instagram as it is a great opportunity for your audience to get to know you and also interact.

Overall Thoughts…

Live broadcasting makes it inherently compelling to users who check out social media for the latest updates and trends. My personal opinion is that both platforms can be used for great engagement results whether you have a business or a personal agenda. Although, Facebook Live seems to be better for businesses big or small compared to Instagram. It all depends of what the use is and how you want to utilize the features.

Feel free to leave a comment or reach out by email if you have any suggestions or tips from your own live streaming experiences.