The Basics of Periscope
For nearly a year, Periscope has quietly been sneaking up into the backdrop of the Social Media Ecosystem. With the help of start-up funding, the Twitter owned platform has quickly grown to a platform of 10 million active users. This number on its own is pretty impressive, overshadowed only by the fact that Periscope’s users watch 40 years worth of live video streams each and every day on the Periscope app alone. This begs the question – what is it, and how can brands leverage this growing social audience?
I’ve attempted to simplify the basics of the Periscope platform, explain what it is, and include some introductory thought as to why Periscope just might be the next big thing in the social media world.
What is Periscope?
Periscope is a streaming video social media platform, where broadcasters are able to stream live video directly from their cell phones using the Periscope app. Viewers can then tune into the broadcast using either the phone app, or a web browser. The streams themselves are archived for 24 hours on the broadcasters Periscope page, before they disappear into the cyber abyss.
During a stream, viewers are able to interact with the broadcaster through chat functionality that appears as text over the top of the video. Viewers can watch the broadcaster, however – broadcasters aren’t able to see their viewers.
Who’s Using Periscope?
Since adopting the platform ourselves in mid-2015, we’ve seen just about anyone and everyone take a crack at Periscope. We’ve seen brands announce new products like Harley Davidson did earlier this year with their 2016 lineup of bikes, to Park Rangers inside Yellowstone National Park showing the sunset from a remote location inside the park. In between, there are millions of users who are trying to find their fifteen-seconds of fame. I have to admit, some of the most entertaining ‘scopes take place in the wee hours of the morning – but that’s an entirely different article.
What Makes Periscope Great?
If you’re a brand or marketer that has experience with internet video and video production – you know the pain. You spend days or even weeks shooting, editing, correcting and tweaking the next greatest two minute video on the internet. It feels like it’s become your life’s work. With Periscope there is no editing, correcting to tweaking. The video is live. Once something is done – it’s done. While this direct to broadcast style can cause some anxiety, the beauty of ending a ‘scope – and walking away, is undeniable.
In addition to the real-time aspect, I’m loving the way that Periscope has been supporting and developing the platform itself. It seems that a new set of features comes out nearly weekly. Far too often, I’ve seen a new social media platform pop-up, only to die under its own weight. Lack of support, direction and feedback can cripple a new platform almost overnight. Periscope appears to be nimble enough to keep its power users happy, while developing paths for new users to adopt and explore the platform.
Like any new technology, time will be the ultimate judge of longevity. For the time being, I encourage you to download the app – and take it for a test drive. At the very least, you can play voyeur for a while…at the other end, I hope that it sparks some creative thinking as to how you can harness the power of the Periscope platform.
We’re happy to talk more about Periscope, and if it’s the right platform for your business. Reach out to Primer 180 today!