Social media has long been an integral part of a successful marketing campaign. However, it’s not effective without engagement. Simply scheduling a few weekly static posts isn’t enough. Consumers want to engage with content, and social media live streaming delivers a smart, easy platform for meaningful interaction.


Midday host Melissa Moore and General Sales Manager Karen Miller of Bonneville’s KOSI in Denver discovered the value of live streams as they contemplated ways to connect with audiences during the pandemic. Without the ability to broadcast live remotes, they wanted a safe way to dialogue with their audience. What they came up with was a series of creative and effective live stream events.

Melissa Moore

Melissa Moore

Karen Miller

Karen Miller

“Coffee with Melissa” Is a Hit

One particularly successful campaign, “Coffee with Melissa,” involved social media live streams from Melissa’s kitchen, sponsored by a coffee company. It quickly evolved into more than they envisioned and became a huge growth opportunity for both the advertiser and the station. Here are a few things they learned throughout the process.

Tips for a Meaningful Social Media Live Stream

What’s the secret recipe for social media live streaming? Consider these tips:

  • Focus on relevance and engagement: The live stream must resonate with your audience. It is up to the on-air talent to know what content listeners would find interesting and to identify ways to make the video engaging. For example, “Coffee with Melissa” did not involve talking to the coffee company’s sales rep. The coffee company sponsored the series and included giveaways of their product, but coffee wasn’t always the topic of conversation.
  • Be authentic: The audience is perceptive and will recognize if the people involved truly believe in the products they’re promoting. For example, Melissa drank the sponsor’s coffee regularly and could confidently recommend it.
  • Take a 360 approach: Never offer a social media live stream as a standalone advertising opportunity. Instead, incorporate it into an integrated advertising proposal that includes an on-air campaign and a digital advertising

Benefits for Stations

Live streaming is a win for stations because it’s:

  • Cost-effective: A live stream doesn’t require a highly produced video; on the contrary, the more produced something appears, the less authentic the viewer perceives it to be. Often, it only requires a smartphone and a few willing participants.
  • A revenue generator: Although a live stream does not cost much for the station, don’t give it away for free. That goes for all social media. Be sure to include it with an appropriate fee. 
  • Great for developing relationships with advertisers: Using a layered, holistic approach allows for more interaction with advertisers. You build a collection of content and a more collaborative and trusting relationship that sets the stage for years of renewals.
  • Not limited by market size: Live streams work no matter the size of the market. They are just as effective in small markets as they are in larger ones. 


Benefits for Advertisers

Advertisers can reap returns as well because live streams are:

  • Affordable: Just as for stations, a live stream can be much more cost-effective for an advertiser than creating a more traditional video ad. Advertisers can also repurpose the content after the live broadcast. 
  • Vehicles to showcase local influencers: On-air personalities are powerful influencers in their local markets. A new poll revealed that young Americans trust local TV news the most of any media organization. Many hosts use their own social media to promote live stream events to complement the station’s efforts. 
  • Creative: Research shows that consumers prefer live videos to static content. One survey found that 82% of people prefer live video from a brand over standard social media posts. Sponsoring a creative live stream can help advertisers reach their audience in a new way.
  • More directly engaging: A successful live stream will drive likes and visits to an advertiser’s own social media pages. A live stream could increase their social media following, giving them long-term access to these potential consumers. 


Social Media Live Streaming Is an Appealing Digital Marketing Tactic

Based on the success of this station and the data on consumer preferences, social media live streaming is certainly something to recommend to your advertisers. With the right hook and message, consumers will find it engaging, reaping benefits for you and your clients.