Why watch recorded, edited, sanitised videos when you can see things raw and in real-time?

A whole new breed of live-streaming apps is vying for consumer attention.

There’s a war going on between two of the most prominent players – Twitter-owned Periscope is battling for market share with start-up Meerkat.

They both allow users to record and stream video live to their followers. Whilst video-streaming technology might not be new, faster mobile and internet connections are opening up increasingly credible live-marketing opportunities.

Everyone is now potentially a live TV broadcaster.

If you log in to either of the apps now, you can get anything from people celebrating the new Stars Wars trailer to news shows giving you behind-the-scenes access.

It’s not always PG-rated, it’s not always legal (with users getting some heat after live-streaming the latest Game of Thrones on Periscope) and it’s definitely not high-quality video.

But some first-mover brands are already signing up to engage with consumers in this rather raw way.

Starbucks jumped on Meerkat early, giving people live video tours of its Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Red Bull used the app to show extreme sports live in action.

This kind of open and transparent communication would definitely scare a lot of brands – and it should.

If it became ubiquitous, many companies might have to turn away from the traditional, planned, long-lead advertising model they’ve garnered for the last few decades for consumers to believe what they’re selling.

It’s still early days yet but with an established social network like Twitter backing it, live streaming isn’t a fad that’s going to fade away.

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