Is Facebook Live Streaming About to Replace Periscope?

“Live-streaming? What the heck is that?”

Well, that totally changed in 2015 when everyone and their brother discovered Periscope and “live-streaming” became a sudden hit – to the tune of millions hitting record. The online marketing community was abuzz about the popularity of Periscope. 10 million users crowded in and started live-streaming the same year it came out (it grew to a million users just 10 days after launch.) Recently, however, Periscope has been the subject of a gradual downfall. There’s a lot of rumored reasons: a lack of communication on Periscope’s part, the bugs in its app that have never been fixed, or the trolls and spam that exists a-plenty in the streams?

As it stands now, Periscope looks like it’s about to be surpassed in terms of popularity by a new, yet powerful live-streaming app from a long-standing social giant: Facebook Live. There’s a very good chance that this new live-stream king may well usurp Periscope off of the throne.

What’s really going down in the battle between the platforms?

Let’s explore.

fb live or periscope

Is Facebook Live Streaming About to Push Periscope Down the Rabbit Hole?

Periscope is owned by Twitter. Originally, Periscope was launched as an attempt by Twitter to gain more relevance and compete with other popular livestream apps like Meerkat.

According to Hustle, Zuckerburg is going for the throat punch on Jack Dorsey. With all the tremendous power of Facebook, it’s a huge move to open up Facebook Live streaming to the public. And Facebook just did that.

The Verdict on Periscope

While Periscope enjoyed heavy buzz and widespread adoption in its early days (it was even named the best app by Apple in 2015), the app could be seriously deflating. Here’s just a few reasons why it’s on a downward slide:

  • said that it’s a “parent’s worst nightmare”
  • Another news site said that with Facebook Live’s launch, and Google offering their own version of live-streaming soon called YouTube Connect, Periscope could die off like Meerkat
  • Chalene Johnson, a NYT Bestseller and Top #10 hottest iTunes podcaster with over 12 million podcast downloads and huge early Periscope fan with hundreds of thousands of followers, recently said in a podcast episode that Periscope is letting her down: it has gone too long without telling us why it was constantly freezing, not fixing a lot of issues, cutting down on the spam (trolls and fake accounts)
  • The fact that you can watch people snort cocaine, a girl DUI’ing (don’t worry: the cops were called on her since she publicly streamed it), and that spam and trolls thrive and exist in every other live stream, well, to put it simply: that doesn’t bode well for Periscope.
  • Spotlight was stolen: For another, Facebook stepped in and stole the spotlight. Facebook Live Stream is an app that the social media giant announced in late 2015 and which has been slowly rolling out over the last several months. Much like Periscope, Facebook Live streaming allows users to share their live videos via the Facebook platform.

Just The Technical Side: Periscope’s 5 Worst Problems

Don’t forget a whole number of technical problems Periscope has (likely some of the largest reasons for the platform’s downward trend):

  1. Freezing. Anyone who remembers Twitter’s infamous “Fail Whale” episodes might not be shocked by the fact that Periscope was freezing on a regular basis.
  2. Trolls. According to Business Insider, trolls were one of the most common problems on Periscope. From sexually explicit comments on female users’ profiles to harassment on posts that reached the trending list, many users were driven from Periscope due to bona fide harassment issues. Parents started reporting Periscope to higher authorities when they found their underage kids using Periscope and receiving illicit advances from these trolls. Periscope has came across as a very transparent platform where privacy didn’t really seem like a big deal: you could hit live and broadcast to anyone with very little trouble.
  3. Fake accounts. Fake accounts went hand in hand with trolling on Periscope and it wasn’t a problem that even the owners of the platform were unfamiliar with. In fact, even CEO Dick Costolo admitted that the platform “sucks” at dealing with fake profiles and abusive users.
  4. Failed notifications. One of the main reasons to join Periscope was to participate in live broadcasts. Unfortunately, however, many Periscope users simply weren’t getting notifications when live broadcasts came on. What’s more, when these users would report the issues to Periscope itself, the platform couldn’t identify the failed notifications and often had no answers for the users.
  5. Bugs. Periscope was riddled with bugs that made it freeze, function slowly, and provide a poor user experience. While these bugs may have been simple to fix, Periscope responded slowly or not at all to user inquires.

Now, it would be unfair just to blame Periscope only for the bugs or trolling issues (after all, Facebook has dealt with some of the same problems); the issue is not so much the existence of the bugs as it is Periscope’s apparent unwillingness to deal with them as proactively as they’ve needed to.

While Periscope users have long since been aware of the platform’s bugs and shortcomings, Periscope itself has seemed virtually oblivious or, at the very least, has failed to reach out and talk to its users about what’s going on internally, which is something Facebook has historically done very well.

Perhaps the only plus Periscope does have still going for it, is that Twitter owns it.

And with that kind of backing, I suspect it’ll be a good fight before it totally goes down – Dorsey is going to fight for it. (According to Hustle, their latest move is teaming up with GoPro to offer live streaming straight from GoPro’s cameras.)

Introducing Facebook Live: A Whole New Way to See the World

While Facebook Live streaming and Periscope may look quite similar on the surface, it’s what’s inside that matters. While Periscope is a simple live-stream app that’s connected to Twitter, Facebook Live is a live-streaming app that makes its home on Facebook – which remains the largest social media network in the world.

It used to only be available to celebs, but now it’s available for nearly everyone: just hit the little record button from your profile.

fb live

facebook live

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Don’t go live just yet, though…

Hold your horses. Users of Facebook live are warning first-time Facebook Live users that your first 45 seconds going live is “make and break time” (podcast from Chalene Johnson again: her first live stream got 250+ shares). Your first time going live sends an actual notification to every last person on your friends or subscribers list–and announces that you’re going live in 3, 2, 1… It’s a big deal and a lot of publicity for you, for free.


Better fix that hair… yer goin’ live.

So yeah, make that first one count. (That’s why I haven’t done mine yet; and per the Twitter chats I’m in, a lot of marketers haven’t either for this very good reason. You have to do it right.)

4 Good Reasons to Use Facebook Live Streaming Right Now

If you can get over doing your first live FB stream, here are some really, really good reasons to start using Facebook Live:

1. You can target your viewers

Facebook allows targeting. This is huge in potentially beating out Periscope, because Periscope has limited functionality there. But with FB Live, you get all the power of their demographic and people targeting capabilities. If you do Facebook ads, you’ll absolutely want to try FB Live.

2. It’s easy and available for nearly everyone

As it stands now, Facebook Live streaming works quite a lot like Facebook Messenger, meaning that there is a live video button at the bottom of the screen that users simply can click to share their live video broadcasts. (This rolled out early 2016 and is available to nearly everyone now.)

3. It’s huge for interaction and engagement

Facebook Live encourages a LOT of interaction. So much so, that Facebook says people comment “10x more during a live video than a regular video.” That’s 1000% more interaction for any of your non-live, shared videos! In addition to allowing users to showcase their broadcasts, the livestream app will also allow users to follow specific topics, like current events and science, and receive updates every time a video is posted in a certain category. Additionally, people viewing live videos on Facebook Live will be able to invite their friends to hop in on the same video (invited people will receive a push notification alerting them). Viewers will also be able to view Facebook’s new “Reactions” feature in the form of floating icons across the screen, much like Periscope’s floating hearts feature. The introduction of Facebook Live Stream is just one more notch on Facebook’s belt of video-focused innovation, following hot on the heels of the introduction of autoplay into news feeds.

4. Accessibility

In addition to higher levels of functionality and a larger user base, one of the distinct advantages that Facebook Live has over Periscope is accessibility. Contrary to what many marketers and app developers believe, everyday mobile users aren’t often completely up to date on the latest apps and, because of this, they’re more willing to use one app that covers all of their needs – from social media updates to live streaming. Facebook, increasingly, has emerged to fill this position. Because Facebook already has such a huge base of users, the platform is already in a better position to become a leader in live-streaming technology. The average U.S. user spends about 40 minutes each day on Facebook, which means that users who are already on the app are more likely to use the same app for all of their live streaming needs.

What’s more, this is a development that has the potential to boast widespread impact across various groups of users, including business and personal users.

One Big Reason Facebook Is Going to Win

Still not assured?

Get ready, I’m going to blow your mind. Ready for this?

In ONE quarter of 2015, Facebook added more daily active users in the U.S. alone than Twitter added in a month globally.

BAM. That’s a lot more people and power on the Facebook platform, vs. Twitter.

Which potential audience would you rather reach?

So, my verdict:

Consider using Facebook Live.

While Periscope has been a helpful tool for many marketers, the fact of the matter is that Facebook simply seems to be prioritizing live streaming videos more than Twitter.

Facebook Live’s users (including Chalene Johnson) consistently report that the platform feels quieter and more personal and that it’s easier to pull better numbers through Facebook Live videos than it is through Periscope videos.

While it’s inevitable that apps will develop bugs every once in awhile, the fact that Periscope has consistently failed to communicate these things to its users has been a bane for many onetime fans of the app.


At the end of the day, while Periscope and Facebook Live share similar visions and interfaces, the fact of the matter is that the team at Facebook Live has simply executed its vision more effectively. While both apps offer live streaming, only one of them places its users at the forefront and creates a quiet space that actually achieves the original purpose of the project: to engage people in conversation. It seems as if Facebook Live is about to take over Periscope. But, only time will tell.

What are your thoughts? Comment below!

julia mccoy book

#ContentWritingChat February 2 2016 Recap: How to Use Periscope and Live Video in Content Marketing with Christoph Trappe

Did you miss this week’s #ContentWritingChat? Not to worry! We have you covered with our weekly recap of our third-ever Twitter chat, on Tuesday, February 2nd at 10 AM CST.

#ContentWritingChat February 2 Recap: Periscope & Live Video with Christoph Trappe

Our guest host this week was Christoph Trappe, the creator of the Authentic Storytelling Project, content marketer, a global keynote speaker, frequent Periscoper and blogger, and recipient of The Content Marketing Institute’s 2014/ 2015 Top 100 Most Influential Content Marketer award. We were thrilled to have him on!

And, exciting times – once again we became a trending topic in the USA, ranking in at #47 this time!

Known as The Authentic Storyteller™, Christoph is a frequent Periscoper and shared his expertise with us specifically on live streaming video.

With the growth of live streaming apps such as Periscope, MeVee, and Blab, many marketers are feeling the pressure to join these platforms. As a marketer, it’s important to be where your audience is if you want to reach them! Live video allows you to better connect with your audience as a brand and on a personal level. Plus, it provides such a great way to engage them when you can get immediate feedback.

Our guest host, Christoph, mentioned that his favorite live streaming platform is Periscope. However, you shouldn’t count out the others. You should definitely give MeVee a try and Blab. Blab is great if you’re feeling a little nervous and want to have someone co-host with you. Grenae is right: live streaming is a great way to put a name with the face.

As Maureen pointed out, live video is just another layer to the content you’re already producing. It provides a whole new way to connect with your audience and get to know them. Strengthen your relationships with your customers, as Grenae said, and your audience is sure to love you.

Do you want to do a better job on Periscope? Take Christoph’s advice: be real! It’s so important to be genuine and show your audience your true personality through your live video broadcasts. When your audience gets to know you and like you, they’ll start trusting you!

Michael’s tip of promoting your Periscope broadcasts in advance is fantastic if you want to get more live viewers. If you have a broadcast coming up on a popular topic or are just talking about something you really want your audience to hear, let them know ahead of time so they know when to tune in.

Broadcast on Periscope or do a live video stream when you feel like you have something to say. If you have quality material you want to share with your audience, go live.

Our CEO, Julia, mentioned that daily scopers are seeing growth, so you may want to ramp up your presence on the platform when you’re just starting out. It will help you be seen and grow your audience quickly.

However, you should also keep your audience in mind, as Grenae mentioned. Think about what time it is before you broadcast because you don’t want to go live when a majority of your followers are likely in bed. If you want live engagement, you have to give people the chance to join!

Ai is spot on in suggesting to share quality content. If you want to gain followers and keep them, make sure you have something of value to share with them. Christoph brought up the importance of interacting with your audience by answering their questions. Don’t ignore the comments that come up while you’re broadcasting. It’s a turn-off for your viewers. They want to know you’re listening to them!

Both Michael and Alejandro shared some great tips as well: create a plan before you go live. This will be helpful if you forget something or even if you get nervous. Just don’t plan it out word-for-word. Be natural when speaking! And before you sign off, give your audience a call to action. Tell them what they should do next!

Great advice from Christoph: If you want to attract the right viewers to your broadcasts, use a title that’s descriptive and states exactly what you’ll be talking about.

Use hashtags in your video titles as well. When you share your broadcasts to other platforms (like Twitter) your Periscope will show up, which will get you more exposure.

As with anything online, privacy is always an issue. Be safe, especially when you’re broadcasting a live video. Turn off location sharing when you’re at home, like Julia mentioned. Michael also brings up a good point about being aware of what’s in your background. You don’t want to accidentally expose confidential information.

We look forward to seeing you at the next #ContentWritingChat! Be sure to join us (@ExpWriters) on Tuesday, February 9th, 2016 at 10 AM CST.

Want to be a guest host? We’re still scheduling guest hosts out for 2016. Email Julia! 

10 Hot Ways To Use Periscope To Promote Your Brand

If you’re not familiar with Periscope, it’s time to learn all about it.

Owned by Twitter, Periscope is a video app that allows users to take real-time video and post it to a variety of social media outlets.

After originally gaining popularity with a host of diverse companies, Periscope has quickly been hailed as one of the most exciting and effective ways for a company to extend its message and promote a brand.

how to use periscope

What is Periscope?

Periscope is a live-streaming video app that allows people to stream video directly from their phones to anyone who is interested enough to watch. (Note: it’s only available as the app, not on a site currently.)

Much like Snapchat except without the annoying immediate delete feature, Periscope is a broadcast platform that allows everyone to become an instant videographer.


Twitter purchased the app earlier in the year for a grand total of $100 million dollars and, so far, it’s performing well.

Within Periscope, users take videos, stream them out to the world and viewers can “like” and comment on the videos. It all happens real-time. These updates appear as a live-feed on the video screen for the original user to read and interact with.

So, basically I can turn my camera on and immediately broadcast, and real-time comments, “hearts” and member names pop up as people join and interact with me.

You can “follow” people here, and people can follow you. You’ll even be notified of live shows to watch if your friends say you should watch (it’s an annoying whistle on my phone that I need to turn off, ha).

There’s even a map showing how many people are live on Periscope around the globe, like so:

Photo credit

Photo credit


I’ve been pretty successful at watching and joining a few Periscopes, and soon I plan to host my own Periscope, answering questions about writing. (Feel free to get in touch if you have some you want me to answer before the show!)


I have to say, it’s pretty fun to be on. You can join anyone’s live feed – and anyone can join yours. You can even share after to your Facebook or Twitter and anyone can watch the reply.

How much better can instant video get?

Some even say it’s more refined and useful than its close cousin, Meerkat.

Periscope is a great way for content marketers to effectively promote their company while also making a unique and accessible impression on their audience.

4 Big Brands Using Periscope

Although Periscope is new to the game of live video streaming, it’s already garnered a wide variety of followers. Companies have chosen to use the app thanks to its cool features: unlike some of its competitors, Periscope allows users to view archives of video streams, which means that viewers can locate live-stream videos even after the broadcast period has ended. Additionally, the app offers a curated and featured section that displays videos the Periscope team loves as well as the videos that people a user follows have recently interacted with. Because of these features, Periscope has become popular with these companies:

1. Spotify

Spotify joined the Periscope community in late March and immediately got down to business by posting a behind-the-scenes video of a performance by popular Irish singer Conor O’Brien, a member of the band The Villagers. The video garnered 382 views during its live-stream period and gained 1,534 likes during that same time.

2. Mountain Dew

Mountain Dew hopped on the Periscope bandwagon almost immediately after the app was released, choosing to release a vine-style video called “stop by to say what’s up.” In the video, a girl spells the word “Swag” on a chalkboard in front of a table full of the company’s logo-branded shirts and hats.

3. Red Bull

Red Bull is known for being one of the first companies to hop aboard new social media platforms and they didn’t miss a beat when it came to Periscope. The energy drink company streamed its live events from the Red Bull Guest House at Miami Music Week earlier in the year using the app and supplemented its use of Periscope with updates on Twitter and Snapchat.


Known for more than just edgy clothing, this lifestyle brand has begun using live-streaming video as a way to offer customers behind-the-scenes views of the company’s shoots and clothing selection. Specifically, DNKY used Periscope earlier in the year to provide customers and fans with a look inside the company’s closets. This created a frenzy of anticipation among eager customers and was, by all accounts, a very good marketing move.

10 Ways to Use Periscope to Do More Business

Most companies are familiar with the ways in which content marketing can be beneficial to businesses, but many people associate content marketing with written content in the form of blogs, articles, how-to’s and answered questions. Content marketing extends to video and visual content, however, and Periscope is a promising tool for any company that wants to promote its brand and reach more customers. Here are the top 10 ways companies can use periscope for business purposes:

1. Use Periscope to Make the Brand Relatable

Customers love to feel like they can relate to a given brand. Often, companies can come off as somewhat cold, omnipotent forces without a human face or a personality. Periscope and other live-streaming video services can help change that. Take the Spotify example from above: Spotify is a company that specializes in live-streamed music and thus works closely with musicians. The average Spotify listener, however, doesn’t see that. All the user sees is a list of saved songs and various playlists. By live-streaming their studio session with Conor O’Brien, however, Spotify added a human face and a sense of relateability to an otherwise impenetrable company and, most importantly, allowed viewers to take a peak at what really goes on in the Spotify offices.

2. Use Periscope to Offer Behind-the-Scenes Peeks

Much like making a brand relatable serves to produce a stronger brand identification in customers, giving customers sneak peeks of behind-the-scenes action helps make them feel like insiders. It’s a widely known fact that customers love to feel like they have insider intelligence and offering behind-the-scenes videos is one of the best ways to promote interest in your company.

3. Use Periscope to Offer Pre-Release Demos

Periscope will be a powerful tool for companies to offer demos of soon-to-be-released products. Although a snazzy photo and a “coming soon” description on a company’s website are great, they’re often not enough to get customers truly excited about a product. For example, PrecisionHawk, a data collection company, used Periscope to provide a flight demo preview of its new drone collection as well as live-streaming impromptu interviews with some of the flight-demo attendees. Doing this builds anticipation and encourages customer interaction with the eventual launch of the product.

4. Use Periscope for Tutorials and Help Desk Purposes

Nothing kills a company/customer interaction quite so quickly as a difficult-to-navigate product and poor customer service. Thanks to Periscope and other live-streaming apps, however, this can soon be a thing of the past. By translating customer concerns into live-streamed tutorials and how-to episodes, companies can offer stellar customer service while also humanizing their company and creating outstanding customer loyalty.

5. Use Periscope to Present Ideas

Much like a pre-release demo, Periscope can be used to introduce new ideas to customers. When a company doesn’t have a physical product produced yet (or is dealing with ideas rather than products), it’s nearly impossible to write something up on a website that will incite customer interest. With Periscope, however, companies can introduce new offerings without having a physical product in hand.

6. Use Periscope to Broadcast Live Q&A

Customers love companies that offer surprise value and Periscope is a great platform for introducing exciting guests and dispensing short, vivid, exciting Q&A sessions to the customer base. Alternately, companies can use Periscope to answer customer questions in a live Q&A session, as Tim Ferris often does through various video methods.

7. Use Periscope for Live Events

When customers are dedicated to a company, they want to be present for live events. If they can’t be, Periscope offers the second-best option: an exciting live broadcast of live events. Because Periscope offers a unique perspective on a highly accessible platform, companies that broadcast their live events in this fashion are likely to draw more customers and increase excitement.

8. Use Periscope for Viewer Feedback

Wondering about what your customers want from a product? Use Periscope to ask them. Because Periscope is an interactive platform, it is a great way for companies to interact in real-time with their customers. Customers can provide feedback, offer comments and interact with a company’s proposition using Periscope much easier than they can on less flexible platforms.

9. Use Periscope to Offer Webinars

Webinars are a close cousin to the Q&A. Ideal for boosting engagement and broadcasting low-tech, simple sessions with interesting guests, webinars are a great way to engage customers and promote further interaction with the brand.

10. Use Periscopes to Spread the Word About Exclusive Offers

Want to produce a literal rush of business for your company? Use Periscope to announce an exclusive offer to the customers who are watching the live-broadcast. Again, people love to feel like they have insider knowledge and using Periscope to release secret deals and promote limited-time-purchase offers is an incredibly effective way to produce new business and get people excited about your products.

For companies that want to interact with their customers in a relatable yet exciting new way, Periscope offers the ideal platform. Great for companies who want to remove barriers and interact with their customers in a more organic fashion, Periscope offers a huge amount of content options in the tiny package of a single app.

Whether you’re seeking to promote a new product or share the fun of a live event with your absent customers, Periscope is the tool of the future that will help your business get it all done.