Live social news: The next generation delivery mechanism

News consumption on social media continues to rise in the US, with our latest consumer research finding that 42% of US consumers regularly watch news on social media. 

Live streaming has become an important component of social media coverage, with 25% of consumers looking to access more live news on these platforms. 

This can be attributed to the decreasing use of linear TV platforms in the US, coupled with the convenience of accessing live digital streams on multiple devices in any location. But how and why should broadcasters produce more live social news?

live social news

Reach a wider audience

With an estimated 295 million social media users across the United States, social media platforms are the cheapest and most efficient channel for delivering live news broadcasts. The discoverability and interactivity of live social news makes your content much easier to find and keeps viewers engaged for longer. 

Univision put social media to work during the 2020 US General Election, delivering eight hours of continuous live coverage on its social media channels using Grabyo. On Facebook, its live coverage generated over 4.5 million views, while over 3 million people tuned in to watch President Joe Biden’s inauguration.

During an event such as elections, when the news cycle moves at a rapid pace, Univision ensured consumers had instant access to its programming on every device, positioning itself as the primary source of news for millions of people.

A place to meet

While traditional broadcast news coverage has evolved to incorporate audience interaction via call-ins or overlays of social media posts, live social news gives everyone a chance to have their say.

Live social broadcasts create a virtual meeting place for consumers to watch and discuss the news with each other. Publishers can also interact with comments to create a two-way dialogue with viewers and use this real-time feedback to shape programming. 

Using tools such as Singular.Live and Dizplai, broadcasters can overlay polls, social comments and user-generated content (UGC) seamlessly into their broadcasts, allowing audiences to feel involved and engaged. 

An excellent example of placing audience interaction at the forefront was by Mediacorp during the 2020 Singapore General Election. Mediacorp’s live stream of “Singapore Votes 2020 – The Political Debate” was delivered to  Facebook, YouTube and online, reaching over half a million viewers. Mediacorp held live social broadcasts and events throughout the entire election period, with consumers using these streams as a place to discuss the issues.

Going vertical

Audiences on each social platform have their own needs and preferences. News organizations that optimize their live content for all platforms individually will reach the largest audiences across all demographics.

The increasing consumption of vertical content formats on TikTok, Instagram and Snapchat requires close attention from news broadcasters, especially as our research shows 25% of consumers rank smartphone access as the most important consideration for choosing where to watch content. 

Univision used Grabyo’s cloud-based tools to produce and distribute a ground-breaking social-first live news show, broadcast exclusively in a vertical format.

The show, JANIOT: PM is optimized for viewing on smartphones and designed to enable audiences to tune in live from anywhere. Alongside JANIOT:PM, Univision delivers live video in vertical, square and horizontal formats using Grabyo Producer, tailoring the viewing experience to each platform. This allows viewers to access content on every platform, or wherever they feel most comfortable.

Building a video strategy for every social platform is now a base expectation for news broadcasters. Live social news will be next. Those who get there first and evolve their offering to connect to consumers in a more meaningful way will see the benefits. 

To find out how we can support you in building a robust social media distribution strategy, get in touch!

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