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Here’s A Breakdown On What Periscope Is and Why You Need to Get On It

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Nov. 12 2015, Published 2:30 a.m. ET

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If you haven’t noticed, I’m obsessed with Periscope. I’m still in shock when I mention it and get a blank stare from bloggers, freelancers, business owners and consultants. Do you know the kind of opportunity that you are missing out on? It’s still a relatively new platform that not a lot of people don’t know how to leverage. But let me put it into perspective for you. It took Instagram almost 3 months to get its first million users. Periscope did that in 10 days. Four months after launching, the app had 10 million accounts and people watching 21 million minutes of live-streaming a day. That’s equivalent to 45 years, people. Stop reading this and download it now. Then follow me. (Shameless plug, whatever.)

The platform has exploded within the last 6 weeks, right on time for the recent Periscope Summit in NYC. Don’t have FOMO though, I’m going to share all the deets from the summit below. In addition, I wanted to share periscope tips on how businesses, bloggers, and media personalities can thrive on the live-streaming app and take engagement to completely new levels.

But before we get into all of that, let’s get the vocabulary together:

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  • A scope – a periscope broadcast
  • The Scope – abbreviation for the Periscope app (I know, confusing already)
  • Hearts – the equivalent of likes on Instagram, given by taping the screen endlessly
  • Scoping – doing a broadcast
  • Scopers – people on Periscope

Periscope is the perfect blend of all our favorite features from Twitter, Instagram, and webinars. You can follow and comment in real-time, share your praise with a tap, and learn while you are on the go. The one thing that became clear during the summit was the sense of community and vulnerability that this platform creates among complete strangers. People feel connected to someone’s circumstance through a mobile phone screen. That’s powerful.

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The one thing that I always struggled with was not feeling like I had an exciting enough life to share. We often feel like we need to have something special going on to make us interesting on periscope, but Scott Williams, one of the platform’s influencers, reminded the audience, “What’s ordinary to us, is amazing to other people.” – @ScottWilliams on Periscope.

He started live streaming tornados in Oklahoma and finally found his groove sharing Periscope tips and morning motivations. It really doesn’t take too much effort to build a community. You just have to be open and willing to be vulnerable, while sharing a glimpse into your life. It wasn’t originally intended to be a teaching platform, but that’s exactly what it has become for many people: the unconventional college experience. From marketing to sales to DIY, Periscope allows us to learn from or be  industry experts at any moment on our phones.

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Periscope helps you build credibility by allowing you to consistently deliver content to a highly engaged audience. Popular topics of discussion are how-tos on beauty, marketing, and entrepreneurship. There are many experts giving you a glimpse into their life, while also sharing tons of knowledge for free! People crave knowledge. They want to know how to do things better, faster, easier. They want answers, Sway. The genuine interactions with your viewers on the scope allow you to position yourself as an expert by speaking to what you know. Blog posts, ebooks and guides can be edited and researched, but answering questions live on camera separates the weak from the obsolete (thanks for that line, Biggie). You become the producer of your own TV show and are able to leverage your expertise in a very natural and authentic way.

Own what you know. We all aer experts at something and should embrace that expertise for our brands and careers.
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You are an expert to others.  As I always say, own what you know. Jai Stone is the perfect example of this. As a master brand coach, she has found success on Periscope by sharing her 10+ years of business and marketing experience. She had me dying laughing when at the summit she said (with sound effects and finger guns going), “I take a Machine Gun Kelly approach. I spray them with content.” But that is exactly what we should do, bombard our audience with valuable content they become addicted to.

While creating  and sharing content is important, you need to also deliver it properly.

Be a Better Broadcaster. Here’s how.

  1. Remind replay viewers that they can still share and give hearts.
  2. Welcome your audience and ask them to introduce themselves.
  3. Give your own quick elevator pitch to help viewers understand why they should listen to you.
  4. Introduce your topic and what people can expect to learn by watching.
  5. Ask them to share with their friends and encourage them to give hearts if they like what they hear.
  6. Jump into your content and be sure to reintroduce yourself and your content periodically if new scopers join.
  7. Keep your content to about 25 minutes and share where they can find more information on the topic.
  8. Share when your next broadcast will be and where your viewers can find you outside of Periscope.
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Tools You Need for Periscope

lenses for your mobile device, a lavalier mic and the Katch.me service to replay your scopes.

Create a Periscope landing page on your site so you can:

  • Make it easy for your audience to find your content.
  • Track how  much traffic you are driving from Periscope to your site.
  • Turn your viewers into email subscribers.
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You will notice that some of the best Scopers are highly connected to their audience, calling them by name, welcoming them to the broadcast individually and acknowledging all of their comments. I’m still trying to master this level of multi-tasking but it’s getting better. These interactions are important of course to build relationships with your viewers, but it also allows you to collect some informal data. You can ask them to shout out their name and city, and, if appropriate, age and gender as well. Don’t get too carried away with the interactions though. Be sure to plan for breaks because people come and go on the scope so you must consistently re-introduce yourself and welcome new viewers. It’s similar to how hosts welcome you back to a show from a commercial break. Allow for people to take breathers so that the conversation flows and is a more interactive experience.

Like on Instagram, viewers can give you praise by tapping the screen to send hearts. This used to be valuable because the broadcasters that received the most hearts appear on the “Most Loved” list on the app. But don’t put too much emphasis on vanity metrics like hearts. In true tacky social media fashion, you can even buy hearts now. Instead of working for likes, measure success by looking at your follower count and increase in following on other channels because those are the people that like you, and have made a conscious decision to tune into your broadcast again.

The key to building a brand on Periscope, or any other social platform for that matter, is to portray a lifestyle. Similar to other platforms you cannot jump on there and just start selling, you need to create an experience AFTER people become invested in you.

Have you done a scope? If you are trying to build your brand, I don’t know what you are waiting for.

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