It’s easy to think of live-streaming apps like Periscope as simple press-the-button-and-stream processes, but a lot more goes into getting noticed by the audience and making the result worth watching.
If you’ve ever wondered how the pro users make their supposedly unpolished Periscope streams look effortless and always have lots of viewers, then you need to check out the following tips.
Make Your Scope Titles Clickable
Periscope asks for a description of your scope before you start streaming, and this becomes the title that people browsing will see. That’s why it’s important to really think about what you write here!
Try to think along the lines of blog posts and ask yourself if you’d click on it. Would you click on “Here’s me having a quick chat before bed” or “Late Night Whisky Scope With The Classy Crew”? Maybe you’d click on neither, but I’m sure you get my point.
Yup, hashtags are a thing on all social networks. Ignore them at your peril.
Hashtags are an easy way for people to find scopes they’re interested in. Even if they’ve never heard of you before they’ll take a look at your scope if they’re bored and wanting to watch something.
Tag where you are, what you’re talking about today, what profession you’re in and whatever else helps people to find your scope. And do take a look at what other people you’re following are using as there are some Periscope-specific hashtags out there for every niche topic.
Use Emoji in Your Bio, Your Name & Scope Titles
Make good use of your emoji. Even if you hate using emoji, you can’t deny that usernames, bios and scope titles with brightly-colored emoji really stand out on Periscope. So why not be someone that stands out?
Choose Your Name Wisely
Sure, you could just use your real name or your blog name on your Periscope account. But for some accounts, it might make sense to use YourSite.com as your username, meaning everyone sees your URL when you scope.
Sign Up Now
You might not be planning to scope until next month, but if you sign up now you’ve got a chance for your Twitter followers to notice you’re there and start following you. Then when you do start scoping there’s someone around to see!
And if you’re still not sure whether you will, check out some great reasons why you should start using Periscope now.
Simultaneously Use Periscope and Other Streaming Apps
If you’re doing something cool for Periscope, why not use a second phone to stream to Meerkat, save for uploading to Instagram or Vine or YouTube, or take a snap? Or if it’s a longer session, you could use your computer to simultaneously Blab at the same time.
I’ve seen sessions where multiple people were on Periscope and Blab at the same time. It’s kind of weird, actually, but it saves you time!
Consider Tips For Better Video
Read up on tips from all sources on how to create better videos on your smartphone, including lighting, backdrops, noise problems and more. There are so many tips out there in improving your videos, so take it all in!
You might also want to improve your public speaking skills, wear brighter colors than your everyday wardrobe, buy a fancy backdrop, re-arrange a room so you’ll always have a blank wall behind you when you scope, or at least just make sure you’re not sitting in front of a pile of dirty dishes.
Review Your Own Scopes
I once heard Chalene Johnson start a scope with something like “I want to tell you about the worst scope I’ve ever seen: The one I did yesterday”. She then totally dissected everything she’d done wrong and why no-one on Periscope should ever do these things. In another scope she outright just asked her audience what she was doing right and wrong.
Asking for feedback is a great idea, as is just privately reviewing your own material.
Your audience is going to be unique to you, so the very best thing you can do is to analyse exactly what happened in your own scopes. Was there something you said that people really liked? Did you miss a comment? Did you spend too much time chatting at the start? Did you actually get to the point of whatever you said you’d talk about in the scope description?
I suggest you also try tools like Fullscope.tv to assess your scopes. It will let you know who’s engaging the most with your scopes and make sure you don’t ignore your biggest fans.
Think about it and analyse what your audience wants more of… Then deliver!
Scope at the Right Time
It’s really easy to use tools like FollowerWonk to find out when your Twitter audience is online and reading Tweets. Then add some adjustment in, to account for the fact that people tend to watch video content later at night. Now, use that information to decide when you should be scoping for the maximum number of eyeballs.
Ask People To Share
People forget to share things until it’s too late, and with Periscope that’s all too soon. Just quickly ask people to share at the start of your scope. They either will or they won’t, but at least they won’t “just forget to”.
Remind them that to share your scope they need to swipe right on iOS or swipe up on Android, then it’s possible to share with other Periscope users and Twitter followers. If you do it while everyone’s still chatting and saying”hi”, it’s not too intrusive.
Note, this doesn’t follow for hearts. It’s considered to be pretty tacky to beg for hearts during a scope. Not that this stops people…
Try to offer content that only YOU can give. Do you live in a really interesting area? Does your industry have some secrets you can expose? What’s your band doing backstage before the gig? What does the sunset look like at Surfer’s Paradise this morning?
The more interesting, intimate, emotional and ephemeral the better. And if it’s something only you can offer (at least right now), your audience will be hooked.
Find a Balance Between Presenting and Chatting
Periscope is designed so that scopers are constantly seeing questions on their screen, while simultaneously trying to talk authoritatively on some point. What this means is sometimes people stop mid-sentence to respond to something they’ve seen, which can get really annoying to other viewers.
Some of the best scopers deliberately do a few minutes of chit-chat to get started, then present solidly for a while, then get back to chit-chat at the end. But this can mean that you forget what you’ve been asked in the middle.
If you’re a big name with a huge following, maybe you could get an assistant to send you the best questions via Slack so you can get back to it at the end. If you’re not using an assistant, you’re going to have to remember those questions and find a way to work them in naturally into what you’re saying.
Try a GoPro Scope
People on Periscope love to see new places and fun stuff, so the idea of using a GoPro to film your scope was just meant to be. GoPro announced in January that they were teaming up with Periscope just to make it easier for you to scope from your GoPro Hero 4. So give it a try!
If you’re out of ideas, check out the GoPro social ambassador team @MitchOates, @DanMoore, @catherineaeppel, and @loki_the_wolfdog to see what they’re up to.
You can swap cameras between front and back on Periscope mid-stream with a double-tap. This is just like Snapchat, and was recently mentioned as one of our Snapchat tricks.
Save Your Scope Video
After your scope you are given the option to save the video to your phone. However, this won’t save any of the comments or hearts, just the straight video. It might be worth saving that video to YouTube for safe keeping, but it might lack context without the comments.
Another option is to use Katch.me, which is a service that automatically stores your Periscope and Meerkat broadcasts. All you do to set it up is log in with your Twitter account and tell it exactly what you want to store and share.
Some people would advise against saving your Periscope videos altogether though, as it stops your original scopes from being ephemeral (and therefore a must-see) if people know there’s always going to be a copy someplace else. But in the end it depends on what you want to do.
Plan Your Thumbnail
This is a simple little trick, but some people don’t think of it. That thumbnail you see for scopes and their saved counterparts on Katch.me is always going to be the first image on the scope. So, if you want it to look fancy and show a pretty image with a title or whatever (made with Canva, perhaps), be sure to focus your phone on your computer while the image is on-screen to begin the scope. Then just turn it around and start chatting.
In fact, you don’t even need to go that far. Some people start by showing off where they are and then never turn it around to let you see their face.
Do You Scope?
Are you already a scoper with a decent following? What sorts of things did you do wrong when you started? What have you learned along the way? Tell us!