What are the largest live streaming platforms

Live streaming platform and target group comparison

Live stream transmissions are trendy. Thanks to the social networks, a video broadcast can be broadcast on the internet in seconds. This not only opens up new target groups, but also strengthens identification with the brand.


WhichPlatform is the best for live broadcast?

And what criteria do you use to select a suitable platform? We compare the advantages and disadvantages of the live streaming portals Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter Periscope and Livestream Services and advise which platform is best for your target group.

Facebook livestream platform

Facebook was the first service to offer live streaming of videos on its platform in December 2015 and offers many advantages. The wide reach of Facebook is undisputed. The announcement via the event page or via the contribution function is easy to use. After the live broadcast, the videos are saved as videos on demand in the timeline. Practical: Facebook also offers the function of selecting the target group of its posts in a differentiated manner. This ranges from age to place of residence and residence to relationship status and academic degree.

On the other hand, the large reach of Facebook also harbors a weakness: the competition never sleeps! More and more companies are using Facebook for live streams and are optimizing their strategies. This makes it harder for smaller companies to stand out on their target audience's news page.

As a company, you also have to consider: Not all posts with commercial content are actually published. This becomes clear in Facebook's blocking rules: “Your contribution violates our community standards”. However, it is often unclear for the creator of the posts which aspect exactly violates the standards.

Facebook also has disadvantages in terms of its support. Since this is a free service, support queries are not answered immediately and sometimes the live stream breaks off unexpectedly without the problem being resolved in the short term, as no error message appears.

In addition, the new Facebook algorithm reduces the organic reach of the posts, i.e. the number of people on whose screen unpaid posts from their own site are displayed: The user should only see messages specially tailored to him. The reason: Too much content from too many companies would flood the Facebook customer feed. Facebook is also following the trend: if you want more reach, you should also pay for marketing. Completely according to the factors: Affinity, Weihgt and Decay "Affinity" evaluates the interaction between the company and the recipient (likes, messages, etc.). "Weight" evaluates the interaction of the content, for example how often it is shared, liked and is commented on. And “Decay” evaluates the time of the user's last login and the post. In addition, Facebook communicates that various smaller factors such as the quality and the device used to access the post also have an influence on its playability. How these are measured exactly and how they ultimately affect remains opaque. Especially during the stream, when it comes down to the time played, companies with uncertain factors like this find it difficult to plan.

So what is becoming more and more important on Facebook is a well-considered, strongly target group-oriented marketing strategy. It remains to be taken into account: The younger generations Y and Z are hardly represented on Facebook today. Exactly selected articles, competitions and live videos with subtitles still offer greater chances of increased reach than displaying the posts at short intervals. When using Facebook in a corporate context, attention should increasingly be paid to the fact that more budget basically means more effective advertising and reach, but the factors of the exact display still remain opaque.

Twitter Periscope Livestream Platform

Twitter offers companies that they can use the network to increase their reach and to address new customers. The focus of many articles is on the professional exchange of information and news. Like Facebook, Twitter has an automatic storage function for live streams, but this is only valid for 24 hours. After that, the video can no longer be accessed. An interesting aspect of Twitter is that you can make the live stream privately or publicly available, which makes it easier to address a specific target group. In addition, the communication function during the live stream is very well developed: In the meantime, you can even choose which users are allowed to use the comment function and which are not before the live stream.

A problem when using the Twitter platform can be that the number of Twitter followers is automatically adopted for the Periscope platform. So if you already have a large community, that can of course be a big advantage. If the level of awareness is low, the stream may not reach as many interested parties.

Instagram livestream platform

Instagram offers to create live stories and to share and comment on them. This function is particularly popular with younger target groups and is in great demand. However, it turns out to be problematic that Instagram does not yet offer an official way to use another source - apart from a smartphone - as input for live streams. However, Instagram's live story function is generally suitable for short-term campaigns, background stories and spontaneous announcements. A good story, first-class content and planning the live stream can also achieve a high rate of interaction with fans.

How does the Instagram algorithm affect live stream posting? Instagram's algorithm creates an individual feed for each user, which mainly consists of images and videos of the pages that the user is following. This is only interrupted by advertisements. The algorithm now has to work differently than it did when you only followed 30 people. Due to the growing popularity on Instagram and the following from hundreds to thousands of accounts, Instagram is also filtering more and more what is shown to the user and what is not. Depending on the interest and interaction, the content that is more than pure “like-for-likes” is prioritized. So the same motto applies as on Facebook: More work, more money and more quality mean a higher penetration with a post.

YouTube livestream platform

YouTube has the advantage that you don't need to register to follow a live stream. At the same time, the network also serves as a kind of search engine, which is why you have a greater chance here than with the other networks of being found under certain keywords. YouTube focuses on the publication of videos and is therefore also suitable as a media library for videos on demand. The livestream function impresses with its ability to create 360-degree livestream videos, with high interaction rates and professional operation.

However, as with the other “free live streams”, support inquiries are not answered immediately and the quality of the videos cannot be consistently provided. Furthermore, third-party advertising is shown, which may not always be in the interests of the video owner.

YouTube’s algorithm is also aimed more at "loyal" followers and only notifies active followers about new videos or live streams. From this follows: Live streams make little sense if the company either has few followers on YouTube or has many but who are not active. In both cases, the number of viewers for the live stream is likely to be rather limited.

The livestream services platform

With regard to the additional features, livestream services offer significantly more than conventional social networks. In addition to the live video, you can integrate a chat or polls and votes, separate access with password protection and individually customizable symbols and players.

In contrast to Facebook & Co, Livestream .Services offers comprehensive support: The team is available not only for planning, conception and any kind of questions, but also for implementation and follow-up, e.g. in the form of an individually programmed media library or integrated provision of videos on demand.

The livestream via the livestream-services platform is particularly suitable for webinars and live coaching, seminars and workshops, especially since high-quality technology is used and social media tools, films and presentation slides can be integrated. Not only is the quality of sound and image impressive, but a professional server infrastructure also ensures that the transmission of the live stream is constant and error-free. Streaming is possible on any device worldwide.

The service has a price, of course, but not a high one: the Livestream.Service service is not free, but free of advertising and strongly driven by the service. Videos can also be shared on social networks, depending on the type of use. A social media button can also be integrated into the videos so that the range can also be increased.

Conclusion: Livestream platforms in comparison

All platforms offer the provision of a live stream: You can comment on the video in a chat, and you can use a like function to show your support and enthusiasm for the topic posted. livestream-services even offers additional communication tools for surveys, webinars or chats.

In terms of quality, support, reliability and transparency, livestream-services is the clear winner. One disadvantage: the video does not automatically reach a large follower community in the social media networks, but is communicated to a specific target group. Depending on the requirements of the live stream in terms of professionalism, security and planning, there are price differences.

When comparing the free live streaming platforms, Facebook emerges as the winner if the focus is on fast implementation and high reach, even if this aspect has to be treated with caution thanks to the new algorithm. A strategic approach is the motto here, provided the target group can be found on Facebook.

Twitter is particularly worthwhile for live streams for companies that already have a very large community and want to address their target group quickly and in a targeted manner.

Instagram is known for quick updates, short posts, and a young audience. The focus at the moment is still on a spontaneous live stream function.

If you want the videos to have a long-lasting effect, it is worth uploading them to YouTube or your own media library.

If you have any questions about live streaming and are wondering which platform might be the best for your live broadcast, we will be happy to help you. Not only with the selection, but also with the conception and implementation, we are happy to assist you with advice and action. The best thing to do is to give us a call: +49 89 41414530. We look forward to hearing from you!