The big buzzwords in the publishing industry right now are mobile and video consumption. Periscope and Meerkat, two apps that launched not too long ago, address both of these buzz-worthy trends and they are worth publishers’ attention.
For those not familiar with these apps, Periscope and Meerkat allow you to live stream video though their native, mobile content-creation platforms. At the touch of an icon, you can instantly stream live to users around the world using the camera on your mobile device.
These free, easy-to-use tools provide a new channel for publishers to instantly reach an audience with a uniquely intimate experience.
For years, the only connection to a magazine and the people behind it was a text heavy masthead that resembled a page out of a phone book. Live streaming provides a new opportunity to personalize our brands by having a face to associate with them through real-time human interaction.
Live streaming is blowing up with the Periscope and Meerkat apps, as we saw during the Floyd Mayweather fight against Manny Pacquiao. It is also becoming a new interactive second screen option with commenters streaming themselves during live broadcasts, such as sporting events and popular TV shows, and interacting with other viewers.
This a new opportunity for magazines to further interact with the public. Magazines need to be more 24/7 by live streaming themselves and turning their brand into their own controlled reality shows. Bring us behind the scenes. Stream edit or design meetings, new issue unveilings, post mortems, interviews with staffers or guests. Bring us behind the scenes at photo shoots or interviews, office tours, live events, etc.
We keep hearing how companies have to evolve beyond simply existing as magazine publishers and become full-blown media companies. Letting people behind the curtain on a regular basis will develop a stronger bond with existing readers and attract new ones.
Live streams of baby birds in a nest attract more than 50,000 viewers at a time. Are you telling me a live stream of an SI swimsuit issue photo shoot wouldn’t be a huge hit? How about the latest Vanity Fair featuring the Caitlyn Jenner cover? Imagine the cool additional content they could have streamed associated with that huge scoop.
The beauty of these apps are their simplicity and instant results. As you attract followers, they will be notified when you are live. Others will discover you through the app’s home page, which offers a menu of new streams. Meerkat has a new relationship with Facebook to send alerts while Periscope was bought by Twitter in January, so notifications are automatically posted in your social feeds.
Those who act now will gain a first-mover advantage, as these platforms are still in their early growth stage. Each has significant buzz, with Periscope separating itself as the leader thanks to Twitter and recent its launch on Android devices. Its CEO Kayvon Beykpour announced at the Re/code event that as of May 28, an aggregate of 10 years worth of live video is consumed each day on the platform.
At this point, there’s a land grab happening, which offers publishers a chance to enjoy disproportionate success with greater ROI until there is more noise out there.
Magazine publishers have been handed a tool that represents an evolution in 1-on-1 marketing and brand development.
How will you use it?
Ron Matejko is the President of Phoenix, Ariz.-based MVP Media, an award-winning digital publishing company. Matejko has 16 years of publishing experience in print, Web and mobile and has worked on the staff of two award-winning publications.
MVP Media publishes MVP Magazine, the first interactive sports publication, which won a Bronze 2010 Digital Magazine Award for Best Sports Magazine, besting entrants from 26 countries around the world, and was a finalist for Designer of the Year. MVP Media will launch its own magazines on the iPad in 2011.
MVP Media also helps existing publishers convert their print products into dynamic publications for the web and tablets. Visit the MVP Magazine website at www.mvptoday.com. Contact Ron by e-mail at email@example.com, or connect with him on LinkedIn or on Twitter @mvp_media.