Live Streaming Public Relations with Periscope, Meerkat, and now Mentions



Live tweeting with just 140 characters? You’re doing it wrong.  Live streaming videos are the latest social media marketing tool that will take your brand to the next level. Press conferences, special events, company news announcements are now breaking the media barriers of real-time.

Here’s how it works

Both, Meerkat and Periscope, are live streaming video apps that allow you to share videos in real-time and adds a new distribution channel to your public relations strategy.  Both apps require you to link it to your Twitter account.  You can now record videos live and broadcast them to your followers, who will then get notified via push notifications. You can access both live-streaming apps from your smartphone or desktop. Viewers can comment or like, and see how many people are currently viewing the live broadcast.  

Meerkat and Periscope are already being used by tons of public figures. Celebrities such as Madonna, Jimmy Fallon, Ashton Kutcher, and Arnold Schwarzenegger are just a few of the growing list of names who are jumping onboard the live-streaming train.  

Periscope founders describe this latest trend in live streaming videos as “the closest thing to teleportation.”  

The differences

There are a few distinctions between the apps that differentiate user needs.  For instance, once you finish a broadcast with Meerkat, the video will disappear unless you use a third-party application, while Periscope saves the video footage to be viewed for the next 24 hours.  Meerkat offers a more authentic “real-time” experience, but Periscope’s features allows for live video streams to reach a larger audience.

Both apps used to require users to link to their Twitter accounts but after Twitter acquired Periscope, Meerkat removed this requirement. Naturally, Twitter is trying to beat its competition and has prevented Meerkat from showing which of their followers are also Meerkat users. Periscope, however, displays who your fellow Periscope users are under the People tab.

Due to Twitter’s restrictions on Meerkat, the app is now turning to Facebook to gain back its popularity. The new Facebook feature will alert Meerkat users when their Facebook friends or pages start or join streams.

In addition to teaming up with a new social network, Meerkat has added an exciting feature which allows for “cameo” appearances.

What is a Cameo?

Users can invite a viewer to take over their video streams for up to 1 minute– a whole new approach to engaging an audience.

Who’s in the lead? As of August 2nd, Periscope announced that they have surpassed 10 million accounts after launching only four months ago. While Meerkat has not revealed exactly how many accounts they have, pairing up with Facebook is likely to increase in their numbers in the next couple months. Nothing like some friendly competition.

So which app do you download? This depends on who you want to follow. Many public figures use both apps, while some stick to just one.

How can live streaming be used in Social PR?

Live Streaming Video – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires


From a public relations perspective, live streaming videos is a publicist’s dream. Here’s why:

Live Streaming Video – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires

Press Conferences

Through the power of real-time video streaming, you will no longer necessarily need the “press” to be present during press conferences. Game changer, right?  The days of pestering media channels to broadcast your company’s news are over.  You have an added level of clarity with the messages you are trying to convey by being able to directly send that message to your intended audience.  Bottom line: more control.


Live streaming an event is a great way to engage a large audience. From live behind-the-scenes footage, to interviews with special guests, to broadcasting the main attraction, there are so many ways to capture an event to make your followers feel like they have VIP access.  Make it fun, make it personal, and make it feel exclusive.


Interviews with special guest or executives in real-time can enhance a company’s transparency between its customers.  Many times, interviews can appear staged and edited.  With the use of Meerkat or Periscope, viewers are no longer speculating about the authenticity of an interview.  

Social PR Secret: Engage your live audience and let them ask questions. Think Watch What Happens Live on Bravo where he lets callers ask questions live!

Product Launches and Demonstrations

This can apply to all types of companies.  A business that is product-based can easily showcase their products using these apps and get real-time, valuable feedback on their new items. 

A restaurant, for example, can show a cooking demonstration for a new dish. A real estate company can show houses to potential buyers.  A clothing store can live stream a fashion show to lure in shoppers. The list goes on.  This is also a useful platform to share promotions or deals.

Breaking News and Responding to PR disasters

The beauty of live streaming is being able to respond immediately to breaking news or a PR crisis without relying on the media.  If an issue needs to be clarified or addressed, or an apology made or even an influx of customer service issues on a new product you can address it, a live video is the most genuine approach to responding to these situations.

On the Spot How To’s

Whether it’s a quick tip on how to make  your favorite drink or the ins and outs of writing your next best selling book, now  your followers can see you in action real-time.

Social PR Secret: Restream and schedule a highly engaged live stream you already had. All you have to do is make sure to save the live stream then you can schedule it for different time zones and test out which times would work best for you! Remember, your watchers can re-stream to their followers in real-time and create more reach for your brand!

All of these different approaches to using these live streaming video apps allow for a more personal relationship between the brand and its consumers.

With this surge of live streaming apps, even Facebook is joining in on the new trend and has launched it’s own app called Mentions. The biggest difference is that Mentions is only available to public figures with verified pages. Facebook Mentions “makes it easy for athletes, musicians, politicians and other influencers to talk with their fans and each other.”

For all of us non-verified folks, we’ll stick to Meerkat or Periscope.  See you in real time.

Want more? Read Social PR Secrets by Lisa Buyer.



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