Experimenting with Periscope – 3 Keys to Successful Broadcasting!

Experimenting with Periscope – 3 Keys to Successful Broadcasting!

Here is a great case study of how a Baptist State Convention is using Periscope successfully to reach their audience and expand their brand. The principles here can easily be applied to churches, ministries, non-profits and businesses.
[Ed Note: If you have not yet heard of Periscope, read our previous post, “New $100 Million Social App ‘Periscope’ Great for Church Ministry!” ]

Guest Blogger: Brian Harris, Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions
Recently we held our first Periscope broadcast to announce the Christmas Backpacks for the Mississippi River Ministry (AlabamaWMU.org/backpacks) that we are really excited about at the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions. If you want to see the broadcast, the video has been archived on YouTube at https://youtu.be/zeR6dAxvGLw.

I created our Periscope account a few weeks ago with the intention of watching others to see if this takes off. Without any promotion we had 40 followers fast. As of today we have 81. Our Twitter account (@alsbom) in comparison has 3,678 followers.

Key 1: Publicize Before the Broadcast
Leading up to the broadcast, I sent out tweets about 36 hours in advance with the initial concept. I followed up with additional tweets every 6-8 hours. I sent another tweet 2 hours before the broadcast, and the last tweet was a picture of the group that was participating sitting around the table prepared to go live.

Key 2: Interaction During the Broadcast
During the broadcast we encouraged viewer questions, asked via text tweets that would pop-up on screen, and we were able to answer those questions live. We had a total of 72 live viewers during the 18 minute broadcast. 22 of them watched from a desktop computer, the other 50 from the Periscope app. After the broadcast was over, it remained available on Periscope for an additional 24 hours and was watched by 18 additional people. During the live broadcast we kept an 18% retention rate… these are the people that tuned-in when we began and watched the broadcast to the very end.

Key 3: Opportunities After the Broadcast
Looking at the list of viewers, I saw our core audience that we were looking to reach tuned in: Alabama pastors, ministers and association staff members. Periscope allowed us to do this. We even received additional questions and comments afterward on Twitter that we were able to answer.

With the success of this first broadcast we are already preparing for several upcoming broadcasts and I have asked the staff to be more aware of potential opportunities especially as guests visit our building for different events.

You Will Need Some Guidelines for Success
Since Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions is a corporate account and needs to be represented well,  I have begun to develop some Periscope guidelines for our staff to follow. I will continue to refine these, but here is what we have so far:

  1. A minimum 24-36 hours advance notice of any broadcast.
  2. Don’t be event driven on the broadcast. It’s a great way to emphasize a ministry or communicate an idea but don’t use it to promote an upcoming event.
  3. Have a set start and end time. Budget at least 10-15 minutes but be aware of what your audience is saying (or isn’t saying) to determine when to end.
  4. Record the broadcasts so they can have a second life on Facebook and YouTube.

I know people have used Periscope for event broadcasts but I haven’t decided if I want to use our corporate account for that or stick to more traditional means of live streaming an event. I may reserve those types of broadcast to personal Periscope accounts where there is a little more freedom (and forgiveness!).

Have you used Periscope for yourself, your company or your ministry?
This is still a new tool and I will continue to experiment with it so with that in mind I’d love to hear of your experiences.

guest blogger Brian HarrisAuthor: Brian Harris
Brian is the Digital Marketing Strategist for the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions in Montgomery, Alabama focused on web, social media, email marketing and video production. He has previously served on multiple church staffs and also runs Harris Media Solutions, LLC, a small digital marketing agency. You can connect with Brian on the following social networks and via his website:

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