For the past few weeks, I’ve been immersed on Periscope, learning all about the tool, the culture, the people, and basically, falling in love. I’ve prepared this guide to share with YOU and all my friends, subscribers, visitors, and followers, so you can know the ins and outs of Periscope and how you can use it to your advantage.
WARNING: This post is long! You can skip right to the sections that are more important, relevant, and meaningful to you, or come back and read it in chunks at a time. I could have written a series, but I decided to keep all the information in one place and to keep updating as this platform evolves. Let’s get right to it!
Periscope 101 ~ What Is Periscope?
Periscope is a fun and useful live video streaming app available on Android and iOS, which was purchased by Twitter for $100 million in January 2015, before it even launched in March! The founders wanted to create something that would serve as some type of teleportation: for people to discover events and places through live video.
The reason I love Periscope so much is because as a viewer, you can see the world in real time through someone else’s eyes. As a broadcaster, you have the power to share content in context: share people, places, interests, events, and experiences with others, while witnessing their reactions and having a two-way conversation.
Why Periscope Matters For Entrepreneurs (or MOMpreneurs) and Women In Business
Micro-broadcasting is an amazing thing for techies and geeks such as I to adopt; however, it is also a useful trend for content creators.
And you may wonder what makes this platform different than YouTube, Google Hangouts, and Ustream, (just to name a few)… well, it’s the new trend and early adopters will always be ahead of the curve, plus, it provides live interaction and calls for just a short broadcast, rather than a live “show” format. People’s attention spans are short, especially on mobile, and people come and go out of your broadcast as they please.
As a Certified Guerrilla Marketing Master Trainer, there are three ways I help moms build their business and gain visibility, credibility, and profitability and all three can be increased on Periscope:
Positioning: You can use Periscope to position yourself as an expert as you develop a common theme across your scopes. If you’re already blogging, you can match your scopes to your blogging categories (which -ahem- ideally align with your Top 5 Passions). Sharing your story is a powerful way to do this, because in your pain lies your purpose and in your struggle lies your strength.
Branding: You can use Periscope to solidify your brand (image) by keeping consistent in the way you show up in the business world. As you scope, you must introduce yourself several times during your scope and that is an opportunity to tell others where to find you and what your mission is. I always say “I’m Elayna with ThePositiveMOM.com and my mission is to empower, equip, and encourage moms to create JOY, BALANCE, and SUCCESS on their own terms.” I end my scopes with my famous quote and tag line “BE Positive And You’ll BE Powerful“ and a “See you later at ThePositiveMOM.com“ To share my authentic personality, I smile and laugh a lot and strive to spread positive energy.
Marketing: Many people confuse marketing with “shameless self promotion,” however, that is not the case at all. I believe there are 5 stages in the marketing process: contact, conversation, connection, community, and conversion (click to learn more) and you can leverage Periscope to go though each, spreading awareness about the value you bring to the table so that your ideal persona knows, trusts, and likes you enough to do business with you.
Getting Set Up On Periscope
When you download the mobile app, you can login to Periscope with your Twitter account (using your Twitter handle) or simply with your mobile number and a handle of your choice.
I did both since someone else has thepositivemom on Twitter (and they don’t use it!) so my Twitter handle is ThePositiveMOM_. Therefore, I am both @thepositivemom and @ThePositiveMOM_ on Periscope. As you login and out of your mobile or tablet device, you can switch from Periscope and Twitter ID’s. Grab yours before it’s taken!!!
You can go to settings and add your name and last name, as well as a mini-bio. Make sure your profile picture represents exactly how you want to show up in that space. You can also keep the information you already have on Twitter.
Next, you’re asked to follow people on Periscope, and, since Twitter owns Periscope, you can easily find and connect with your Twitter followers (AKA tweeps!).
How To Start Your Periscope Broadcast
When you launch the app, you will land on the discovery stream (with the TV icon). The third icon on the right will allow you to stream your own broadcast. To go live, you simply type a title and click the big red Start Broadcast button.
UPDATE: I recommend you use WiFi and test your Internet connection before you begin your scope. Set your smartphone on AIRPLANE MODE, because if you get calls during your broadcast, you will likely be disconnected by the interruption.
The first image on the stream will be the thumbnail that shows up on people’s screens, so take advantage of branding. I usually place my business card (showcasing my logo and tagline) or a screen shot of my website. To flip from the front to the back camera and vice versa, you double tap the screen. Don’t press the Start Broadcast button unless you are ready!
Because it takes a few seconds for viewers to start joining your live cast, it is a best practice to watch the scroll and wait until you see more than one person viewing and then you start talking.
How long should a scope be?
A few minutes is fine. It’s better to post shorter streams more frequently, rather than a long one. Have fun, be spontaneous, and animated. Don’t close while getting a lot of comments and hearts: when you are done sharing or viewership and interaction starts dropping, say goodbye.
Fab Tip: If you get down to 0 viewers and you are not done, stop and restart with another title! To end you scope you swipe down on iOS.
Letting others know about your scope
On Periscope, you can share your live-stream by enabling tweets to go out as you start your broadcast (do this by tapping on the bird icon before broadcasting). The title of your scope will show up and a link to view on the non-yet-editable tweet, like this:
LIVE on #Periscope: [Broadcast Title] [Link to Broadcast]
This tweet was automatically sent out when my 12 year old daughter started to livecast my presentation at Rocks Digital, where I spoke on Social Media Day:
— Elayna Fernandez (@thePositiveMOM_) June 30, 2015
Besides the Tweet notification, you can also copy-paste the URL and share it somewhere else: by e-mail, text, Facebook group, or any social media update you choose – and tell them what you scope on.
Writing The Best Broadcast Titles On Periscope
Your title needs to be entered before starting your broadcast to describe what you are scoping (broadcasting live on Periscope) about. Your scope title can be:
- 72 characters long
- straight-forward (say exactly what it is!)
- made dynamic by using hashtags for more discovery power.
- stand out by using CAPS and emojis (emoticons!)
- in the form of an invitation to learn or call-to-action
- intriguing, sound exclusive, or seem weird ( i.e.I scoped my behind-the-scenes from #AdventureCon15 and that was a hit!)
At this time, you cannot edit your scope title, so take a bit of time to make it an effective one.
7 Ways To Engage Your Audience On Periscope
After you click the red BROADCAST button, your viewers can comment and they can also share your broadcast with their followers. Viewers can also send “hearts” to the broadcaster (you) by tapping on their mobile screen as a form of love, support, and appreciation. Here are some ideas to interact with your Periscope viewers:
- welcome/greet viewers as they join (some have weird usernames you won’t be able to pronounce)
- ask viewers where they are viewing from
- ask your viewers to “Swipe right” to share your broadcast with their followers (they can invite all or select individuals).
- acknowledge their comments and answer their questions. Comments can be up to 72 characters long.
- ask them to tap the screen to express love and give feedback (that’s how you get to Most Loved status).
- ask questions and encourage interaction (viewers can view each other’s hearts shared and comments, as well as reply by clicking on another viewer and click on their name to get their profile information and start following)
- Ignore or block trolls or anyone who is rude or offensive, don’t give them undeserved attention and never take it personal. You can limit comments to followers only.
I love the hearts. I love hearts in general, but HEARTS are the official Periscope currency: your popularity is measured by how many hearts you receive. It’s all about how many hearts you have! As you start getting hearts, you will notice the hearts will come in different colors; this is because hearts match a viewer’s avatar color. Your avatar color as a viewer will be different all the time.
It takes a little time to get used to scoping and interacting, and I find that the more I do it, the more comfortable I become and the better I engage.
10 Ways To Grow Your Periscope Following:
- Collaborate, co-host, or interview other broadcasters.
- Choose a consistent schedule for your scopes (like my friend @TabithaPhilen with her nightly scope for inspired bloggers).
- Be focused on a topic or style and share your honest, helpful, positive expertise.
- Be authentic, be yourself, be original (and don’t worry about the lack of filters – you are beautiful just the way you are… just ask Bruno Mars and Mr. Darcy!)
- Broadcast often (some people say at least once a day).
- Include your Periscope name on other social platforms and share threads
- Watch the most loved scopers, ask for help and tips, and give hearts.
- Encourage online viewers to download the app so they can interact with you.
- Teach your fans/followers/subscribers/ and blog readers how to follow you on Periscope
- Insert cards on your YouTube videos
Repurpose Your Scopes:
While we’re talking about YouTube, did you know that Periscope has a built-in auto-archiving feature?
It keeps your scope for replay for a total of 24 hours (with hearts, comments, and all). Even though your replay will disappear like magic from the Scopesphere (I just made that up), you can choose the Autosave Broadcast option to send the scope automatically to your camera roll. This allows you to edit them and upload them to YouTube if you choose. I even use Instagram to do a tease video asking people to watch the replay while it’s up, too. The possibilities are endless.
If you want others to know about the replay beign available, you can retweet your cast to remind others to view it before the 24 hours are up. OR, if you don’t want to keep the replay up for viewers, you can manually delete it… just make sure you autosave it if you want to refer to it or repurpose it later.
You can broadcast publicly or privately. I have been coaching and mentoring some of my mom clients on Periscope, which is really awesome. I love the public scopes a lot because you can gather an international audience with very diverse viewers. Of course, this also means crazy comments and even marriage proposals. LOL
To view live broadcasts of public video streams, you tap the TV icon in the app, and to watch replays, you can tap the “View All Recent Broadcasts” option.
Privacy Concerns: Sharing Your Location
Location tagging is usually a major privacy concern for many people on any network. Periscope used to pinpoint exactly where you were scoping from, but now they record your location as a general area. You can also turn location tagging off if you choose. I always turn it off when I’m at home, but I turn it on otherwise because I’m usually sharing places and events with my viewers, which they absolutely love.
Study Your Periscope Stats / Analytics
You can look at several stats on your scopes such as retention rate, number of live viewers and web viewers, number of hearts received (both live and on replay mode), and more. This is a great tool to start noticing what works, what doesn’t, and what to do differently (that’s my way of assessing everything!). I’m learning more every time I scope and I love the adventure!
Something that helps me become a better scoper is to watch my own replays. It was something I did when I started speaking and doing video, as well.
I’m looking for patterns when I watch my replays and when I watch other broadcasters’ scopes: what gets the most hearts? what causes viewership to drop? what comments to look for and answer and how?
Tips For Recording Your Scopes
I use my iPhone 6. Many people on iOS have reported having problems with the 4 and 4S. Interestingly enough, I haven’t heard any issues with any Android phones.
You can use a tripod or a selfie stick for stability, but don’t be afraid to scope on the fly. Spontaneous, inspired scopes are the most popular. The same is to be said about scripts; an outline will suffice to keep you focused with all the interaction happening on screen.
Try to have the least background noise possible. Of course, if you’re at an event, people understand it’s not realistic. Your phone microphone should be okay, but if you happen to have a lavalier, please use it, because it will look and sound more professional. You can ask your viewers if the sound quality is working for them and adjust accordingly.
Scope from a variety of environments and be aware of the lighting. My friend @CherylLPitt does incredibly valuable scopes for bloggers and homeschoolers from her car because “it’s quieter,” she says.
What NOT To Do On Periscope
Thankfully, you can block people from commenting on your scopes, because I’ve experienced that some of the commentary going on is negative or inappropriate. You can become familiar with Periscope’s own Terms of Service HERE.
In general, try and keep it legal, friendly, respectful, peaceful, and PG-13. And don’t impersonate, mislead, purchasing popularity, practice piracy, or hijack other’s scope to promote yourself. Sensitive content is allowed “when it is artistic, educational, scientific or newsworthy.”
Besides following the rules, it always helps when we report abuse so others don’t have to experience it.
Oh… and P.S. a note from your friendly Positive Mom: Don’t Periscope and drive! 😛
If you allow Periscope notifications, you’ll get push notifications from people inviting you to watch various live streams they watch. You’ll start seeing them more and more often, and they pop up even when you are watching other scopes. I get so many notifications from people I love that I must admit I watch more than I scope, because I follow amazing people. For example: @WendyWoerner, @DrWalterSims, @CathyHackl, and Loren from @DisneyPeriscope show up on my radar at least a dozen times a day each.
Periscope vs Meerkat
A lot of people ask me why Periscope and not Meerkat. They are very similar platforms, with very few differences. On Meerkat, every comment is a Twitter reply to the original Meerkat Live video prompt tweet, while Periscope comments are Periscope-only, which is better for me.
You can hide messages on the screen on Periscope, while you don’t have the option to do that on Meerkat. When you are watching a scope, you can swipe to the right and go to the bottom to tap the hide chat symbol and view the stream without comments.
Periscope allows you to watch previous streams (organized in a chronological list), and Meerkat does not allow replays.
Subscribe For Updates!
This post includes everything you need to know about Periscope right now. And since Periscope is a growing network, I’ll add any updates below as they become available – be sure to subscribe here for more!
Did you find my tips helpful? Of course, I’d love to hear how you’re using Periscope as a mom or mompreneur. Please share your feedback, stories and advice in the comments below!