• Michael Linsin

How Facebook Live Can Help Grow Your Blog

Typically, I'm leery of social media.

Don't get me wrong. I love it when readers share my stuff, and I try to make it easy for them by using Social Warfare. (For more information on Social Warfare, please visit our "tools we use" page.)

In this regard, social media has been a big part of growing my business. It isn't unusual for me to get thousands of shares per article on Smart Classroom Management, which is awesome, of course.

What I'm leery about, however, is the use of social media myself to try to send more people to SCM. You see, I want to draw them there, to the blog, not to my social media platforms.

I want my blog to be special, exclusive, somewhere readers seek out and feel fortunate to have found. The blog, after all, is where readers make purchases, which can't happen on Twitter or Instagram.

Furthermore, I don't have the time to make my own social media channels compelling. The truth is, they're a lot of work. I believe that time is much better spent making my blog the best in the educational niche. If it does that, then readers will do all the sharing I need for me.

However - and this is a big however - I recently experimented with Facebook Live. I've always had a Facebook Page for my blog because some readers prefer getting their notifications there rather than subscribing to the blog.

It's also easy.

Whenever I publish an article on the blog, I just post the link on Facebook. It's all I've ever done and now have over 23,000 followers. But for the past several months I've been intrigued by Facebook Live.

If you don't know what it is, Facebook Live is a live video feed that broadcasts to your followers or anyone who happens to be on your page. You set up the day and time you want to go live and Facebook uses your computer camera and mic to transmit the signal out into the world.

When the live video ends, you can then post it to your feed for others to view.

What attracted me was the ability to connect with readers in a different way. Although blog readers will get to know you through the written medium, they'll never experience the level of connection available via video.

I'd experimented with YouTube in the past, but never got comfortable enough using my phone camera to pull the trigger. I felt awkward and the preparation time was extensive. It also wasn't real time, which I felt I needed to be authentic.

The great thing about Facebook Live is that the visual presentation is no different than when using Skype or Zoom. So I was comfortable in that regard. But the biggest benefit is that you can interact with your readers via an adjacent chat window.

I get so many questions from readers in the comment section of my blog, but don't have much time to answer them. So I though I could kill two birds with one stone: Offer a deeper, more intimate connection and answer question live.

So last week I tried it out. I set up a time and went live on Facebook for a one-hour Q&A. It was awesome. I don't think I was very good at it (yet). But it attracted enough people to fill the whole hour with questions and my answers.

To see a replay, click here.

As of this writing, in four days, the replay has been seen by more than 1400 people. Not bad for a first time and certainly enough to try it again in a couple weeks.

So, to sum up, I highly recommend Facebook Live as an addition to your blog. It provides good supplemental exposure, allows you to connect with your readers in real time, and if you use it as a forum for questions or conversation with your readers, you don't have to do any planning.

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