Facebook Mentions allows verified accounts to tell a story as it happens with live video.
The mobile app for iPhones (Sorry Androids) was released last year for public figures to connect with fans. I used the term “public figures” loosely because the app is now open for anyone with a verified account. On Sept. 10 Facebook said anyone with a blue check mark on their profile would be able to access to the program. (Click here for more details.)
Tearsa Smith, WATE 6 On Your Side anchor for our morning show Good Morning Tennessee, used the live video feature during the newscast today. She held the stream on an iPad.
I would describe it as Facebook’s version of Periscope and Meerkat, but only for “special people,” the verified accounts.
The video stream lasted about 30 minutes and by the end there were about 240 viewers.
I was having problems embedding the code from Facebook to the page. Here’s the live stream on YouTube.
Tearsa posted the stream on her page. I shared it to the WATE 6 On Your Side main Facebook page.
This was the first time we used the app during the show. I think it was well received.
Tearsa showed the viewers what happens on the other side of the TV screen, a view many people do not see.
She asked the viewers to post questions in the comments section, talked to them during commercial breaks and moved the camera around to capture our meteorologist Trent Magill in the weather center and “right now reporter” Shelby Miller at the storyteller covering national news.
The response from our viewers were mainly positive. One woman even asked if we were going to do this every day.
After the show, I asked Tearsa if what she would do differently:
- Give viewers a “heads up” – Let them know in advance that we will be streaming online during the show.
- Test out the angle – Make sure the camera is placed at a flattering angle
- Set up your live stream on one device (in this case, an iPad) and then set up your computer for comments.
After the stream, the video lives on Facebook for playback.
Announcements, hosting a question and answer session, sharing to other social media platforms and up-to-date trends are other features of Facebook Mentions.
I haven’t experimented with them. Partly because the Mentions app for Android has not been released yet. (Androids always get the short end of the stick.)
Facebook Mentions in the news:
Facebook now lets all people with a verified account use Mentions app (Mashable)