Facebook Live and Periscope: Live Streaming by The Numbers

What has the introduction of Facebook Live meant for Twitter’s Periscope? We looked at 500 of the largest profiles from three categories (companies, celebrities, and media) across Facebook and Twitter to see what the data says about how marketers are using these live streaming tools.

Facebook Live is Growing

The number of Pages using Facebook Live has steadily increased from January - September, 2016. While media still lead the way with live streaming video, celebrities and companies have increased their usage by a total of 8% and 10%, respectively. It is possible that media have widely integrated Facebook into their live streaming strategy because they are able to reach a larger audience with minimum effort, which is essential to any breaking news story coverage. More importantly, the ability to publish live content perfectly fits the mission of any media company. Facebook Live has become just an extra platform that media companies can leverage to deliver news to large audiences.


Celebrities Increasingly Adopt Facebook Live Over Periscope

Celebrities have adopted Facebook Live at a rapid pace compared to Periscope useage which has seen little change during the same time period. There has been a significant 40% increase from their number of Facebook Live posts from January to February.

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Companies Use Facebook Live More Than Periscope

When it comes to Facebook Live, companies significantly increased their usage. Just 8 months ago, companies were using Periscope 33% more than Facebook Live, and that trend has shifted. We now see that Facebook Live usage has increased by 47%, compared to just 16% of companies posting live videos on Twitter.


Media Chooses Facebook Live Over Periscope

We can see that media profiles were using Facebook Live and Periscope almost equally in February, 2016. However, by March, Facebook Live videos were published at a more rapid rate, and at the same time fewer Periscope streams were posted.


Why the Change?

Facebook Live offers many advantages which could account for the tremendous spike in usage. Firstly, Facebook's online community is huge with over 1 billion monthly active users, compared to Twitter's 300 million monthly active users. As a result, profiles have the ability to reach more of their audience on Facebook than they do on Twitter. It turns out, that convenience could be the ultimate factor that has lead to such an increase in Facebook Live useage - not necessarily product innovation.

Furthermore, Facebook Live is easy to use and exists within the platform. Users have the option to post live without going through an external app. Lastly, Live videos can be easily found and stored on a Page's Timeline. This allows Pages to see more benefits out of their Live efforts long term, unlike videos posted to Twitter.

Data continues to show that Pages are increasingly using Facebook to post live videos. However, marketers should not be discouraged from using apps like Periscope to communicate with their Twitter audience. Instead, social media marketers can use the differences of social media platforms to their advantage, further targeting their content at the right audiences. Rather than shifting from one platform to the next, create a well-rounded approach that includes all of your communities. 

We will continue to monitor live streaming trends to see how markets are using them in practice. 

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