This isn’t really coaching, but it WILL help you to grow your ethical business, and to share your message and connect with your tribe, so that’s good enough for me.
And encouraging people to take action, despite their fears, is also a key part of coaching. So if this ‘how-to’ helps you to do that, then it’s all progress in the right direction.
For at least the last year I have been reading, and hearing all kinds of things about the power of video, and how Facebook apparently loves video, and prioritises it over other content. The Facebook alogorithm is something that I don’t even attempt to start to understand, but I can understand that bit – that if you do stuff on video, and specifically Facebook live, then Facebook will show it more people – simples.
Or is it?
I have known for a good 12 months that Facebook lives are something that I should be doing. I have watched other people effortlessly ‘jumping on’ to them in their groups or on their pages, and I could see the engagement that they were getting and how it was really helping them to connect with their audience, but something was stopping me.
And that something was fear.
Fear of what I’m still not entirely sure, but it was definitely there, that little voice whispering in my ear that danger lay ahead, and that stopped me moving forwards.
I think a lot of my fear was probably around the technology, and not really knowing how to make it all work. I googled and looked at a few blog posts, but I couldn’t find a really easy ‘idiot’s guide’ that told me which way round to hold the phone, and walked me through the whole process. I figured I couldn’t be the only one who was looking for this information, so I’ve put together this step by step guide to going live on Facebook – I hope it’s helpful!
First up – equipment.
- a smartphone
- the Facebook app
- something to hold it with
- an internet connection
It’s that simple!
You just need a phone with a camera, which has an up to date version of the Facebook app on it and some way of holding it while you talk.
I initially wanted to do my Facebook lives via my laptop, and it is possible (there’s instructions here) but it looks a whole lot more complicated, so I opted to keep it simple.
In terms of holding the phone, here’s the info I couldn’t find – you need to hold it with the screen facing you, so you can see yourself and check you are in frame, and you can also see people’s comments.
You have several options for holding the phone:
– you can simply hold it, like you are taking a selfie – bear in mind with this option how long you might want to talk for and how tired your arm might get!
– you can prop it up on some books to make it the right height so that you can stand or sit without having to hold the phone
– you can invest in a little tripod and a phone holding attachment like this one – I bought this from a camera shop about 9 months ago and it has sat in the cupboard taunting me as a visible sign of my lack of action! It wasn’t especially expensive and is something you can probably pick up second-hand on eBay.
Before you go live, you can check out your set-up and whether your face is in the frame etc by simply switching on your phone’s camera, and pressing the little button on the corner to put it in selfie mode:
This let’s you see how you will appear when you are live!
So now you’re ready. Almost..!
I would definitely suggest that at least for the first few times you give a little bit of thought to what you are going to say to save you ending up panicking and looking like a rabbit caught in the headlights.
I like to have thought about the general topic for the live, and thought about my intro and some bullet points to provide a little bit of structure and to stop me waffling on endlessly and repeating myself.
Some people prefer to have a ‘script’ written out, but be aware that it doesn’t come across as too scripted and un-natural, you want it to ‘flow’.
So now you’re really ready. Here’s what you need to do:
1) Open the Facebook app in your phone, and go to your personal page, your business page, or the group page that you want to post on (just a quick word on Facebook etiquette here – if it’s your own group, go right ahead and get ‘living’, but if it’s not your group I would definitely check with the group admin before posting a FB live – lots of groups prefer to just have the admin doing any lives, so do check!).
2) Click on ‘write something’ as you would normally, and you will see a drop screen of options open up at the bottom of the screen.
You want the ‘Live Video’ option – it’s quite normal to be feeling really quite sick at this point in your first go – it does go away I promise!
3) Then you should see this screen here with you moving around in the background.
You need to write a short intro to your video – for my first one I think I wrote something like “Hi guys, I’m trying out my first ever Facebook live! I’m super nervous, please be kind :)”
I do the writing bit with my phone out of the tripod thing otherwise it makes it really hard to type!
4) Once you’re happy with what you have written, but before hitting ‘Go Live’ move your phone to where you want it to be- prop it up on your stack of books, or wedge it into it’s holder. You can have it portrait or landscape, whichever you prefer.
5) When you’re ready, take a look at your notes/bullet points, take a few big, deep breaths, smile, and hit ‘Go Live’.
You will get a three second countdown, and then you are live!
6) Enjoy! Don’t worry in this first one about how many people are watching – you get a little eye symbol at the top of the screen that tells you how many people are watching – I know some people who cover this up so they can’t see it while they are recording – if that works for you, then do it.
Also, don’t worry in this first one about trying to read and respond to any comments as they happen (also don’t worry if there are no comments!) – maybe invite people to comment and to ‘like’ but explain that you will look at and respond to all the comments at the end.
The comments scroll up as they are posted, and seem to disappear, but you can just use your finger to scroll them up and down so that you don’t miss any, but like I said, you might want to leave this for another day!
7) When you are done, just hit the ‘Finish’ button in the bottom right of the screen and sit back and exhale!
8) You will see a screen that gives you an option to download the video and save it to your camera – I do this so that if I want to post it to my website, or to You Tube at a later date, I have got it there.
9) Facebook also then asks you if you would like to post the video – this means it then stays up on your timeline or in your group for 24 hours, and gives more people a chance to see – you want to do this (unless you’ve had a complete car crash. Which I know you won’t have done.)
10) Go and have a celebratory cuppa and give yourself a HUGE pat on the back for doing something that maybe terrified the pants off you!
A couple of things to note:
-If you want to have a ‘dry run’ where you can test out the tech without anyone seeing it, you can do this on your personal profile by changing the privacy settings.
When you click on ‘Write something’ you see a little button just under your name, that is probably set to ‘friends’ or maybe even to ‘public’. Click on this, and you should get a drop down box with some options – you may need to click on ‘more’ to be able to see the ‘only me’ option – click on this, and then no-one else will be able to see your video.
Then go ahead and follow the steps above. This can be really useful if you are worried about not being to work out the technology.
**NB. Don’t forget to change your privacy settings back again afterwards, otherwise no-one will see any of your posts! **
– If it says “lost connection” or “trying to reconnect” just keep on talking – it should sort itself out pretty quickly.
– Don’t be downhearted if no-one turns up to watch – you will get far more views after the live itself, so keep going, get your message out there, and keep talking.
– Once you get more confident, you can start giving people a bit of a ‘heads up’ and advance notice for when you are going to be going live, and let them know what you are going to be talking about – that way you should get more people turning up live and interacting, which is after all, what we are after!
Lastly, once the adrenaline has subsided, take a few minutes to reflect back on the experience. If you can bear to watch it back, then do. Think about what went well – write down three things. Think about anything that didn’t go as well as you might have wanted it to – what could you do differently next time? And then think about what you’ve learned from the whole experience. It might be that you’ve learned that you hate live video and that you’re never going to do it again, and that’s ok – you’ve learned something really useful. It might be that you actually really enjoyed it and can’t wait to do some more. Or it might be that you’ve learned that you are braver than you thought. That you took action despite the anxiety, and the nerves, and the fear. That you did something that this time a month ago you would never ever have imagined you could do. That’s amazing. You did it.
Whatever else happened, you did it.
And that is something to be hugely proud of.
I hope this is helpful – do leave a comment to let me know, or if I can add anything to make it clear-er. And I really hope that by de-mystifying the process a little, you feel more able to have a go! Video is such a great way for your customers or clients to really quickly get to know, like and trust you, and to connect with you and your story. It can be a powerful tool as you build your business and your impact, and it’s really not as scary as you might think, I promise!
Do let me know if this inspires you to have a go – with in the comments below, or over in our Facebook community.
I’ll be so pleased 🙂