Immediate Future proves Facebook LIVE is a fundamental B2B tool

I want you to think about the last video you published. How many video views did it get? 10s, 100s, 1000s? Now imagine the positive impact on your brand if you could garner hundreds of thousands of views from your prime audience – and, specifically, boardroom decision-makers.

There’s a myth within industry that Facebook is only for consumer marketing. Every time I hear this, I reply: “Tell me about your trial project. What happened?”

It’s remarkable how many people claim to know Facebook’s role without having challenged the status quo, and tested the platform for themselves. When I delve deeper, the origin of their consumer-focused belief tracks back to a conference or a piece of content they once saw. There is no tangible evidence either for, or against their belief. In most cases recalling the speaker or conference isn’t possible.

It’s remarkable how much trust we place on unproven or unchallenged opinion and insight. Always seek evidence!

18-months ago I was sat in a meeting room considering why brands were working overtime to foster media attention. Why do B2B brands place high value on a few column inches that may reference their brand and message? Why do they crave the 2-minute BBC News interview that may, or may not, namecheck their brand – and more importantly may, or may not, be seen by their prime audience.

Before we go on, I should say, I come from a Public Relations background, and of course I know the answers to these questions. I was debating that given the lottery around whether my businesses audience would see the interview piece, and knowing media compliance regulations have tightened forcing broadcasters to prevent overt branding or marketing messages appearing, and understanding editorial requirements had in turn toughened, why are brands clamouring for coverage when their brand exposure opportunity is narrowing.

I started thinking: what if we presented a broadcast-style interview, and we didn’t shy away from the tough and uncomfortable questions; what if we honed in on the core challenges industry is facing right now, and we presented impactful insight that addresses those challenges? What if we took ownership of the production and presentation, meaning we didn’t have compliance or editorial limitations? We could present and publish whatever messages and branding we wanted. In my mind, all we had to do was make sure the production had compelling appeal and viewability. Given immediate future’s outstanding reputation for storytelling, I was struggling to see a single barrier.

Next, I started thinking about Reach and the potency of the Facebook Paid Media platform. The brilliance of Paid Media is that you can zero in on your prime audience.

For intellectual property reasons I can’t go into too much detail. If I told you how to do everything, then you wouldn’t need our production and execution smarts. However, what I can share is that we have data within the agency showing the changing consumption behaviours of C-Suite. Boardrooms globally are increasingly time-poor; they’re consuming more content on-the-go, with a tendency to favour video and podcasts over print. It’s why the likes of the Economist are thriving with their pod cast proposition. Yes, I’m massively simplifying complex and detailed insight, but the summary is accurate.

We knew that if we produced an impactful production that focused on the big challenges within industry, and what the answers are to those current boardroom shared challenges, our prime audience would consume an impactful and desirable video.

Facebook LIVE is a wonderful platform. Even before the application of Paid Media, Facebook LIVE reaches 6 – 10 times more people than standard video. People wrongly think that you can only shoot Facebook LIVE using a smart device; as Facebook Partners, we actually film, edit, and broadcast LIVE from a professional multi-camera shoot; it allows us to control the photographic story, lighting and audio; maximising viewer pleasure. It’s remarkable how this content also delivers thought-leadership!

For the last 18-months, immediate future has been pioneering this approach to content production. We’ve delivered for many B2Cs and B2Bs throughout Europe. Why have I focused on B2B within this blog? Simply put, we got fed up with everyone saying Facebook, and particularly Facebook LIVE doesn’t have a place within B2B.

Remember my first question: how many video views did your last published video receive? In the past three-weeks, immediate future has delivered over 500,000 Facebook LIVE video views from CEOs, CTOs, CIOs, VPs and Directors. Our client wanted to take key vertical messages to their customers and prospects – and they only wanted to reach C-Suite operatives! For example, a Transport LIVE presentation targeting CEOs within the transport industry; a Retail LIVE presentation taken to CEOs of retailers, and so on and so forth.

Facebook LIVE and the Facebook Paid Media platform is a potent tech combination. You do need specific intelligence to produce the right presentation – so you don’t bore and switch-off your audiences. After all, if you’ve turned their heads, then you need to impress them to win their hearts. You also need specific intelligence of how to maximise the Paid Media deployment. It’s utterly pointless shooting an impactful video and then just throwing it out there to all and sundry. We don’t care about the millions of pointless video views; we’re passionate about seeking out the hundreds of thousands of buyers or your brand’s proposition.

We’re here to help. We love innovating and delivering what no one else can. I guess that’s why we’ve won Best Use of Social Advertising two years on the spin and Best Campaign / Strategy of the Year at the Drum Social Buzz and Drum Network Awards.

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