Facebook Stories vs. Facebook Live: Which Event Marketing Tool Should You Use?

Both are great methods for delivering time-sensitive content to your network

Over the last few weeks, Facebook has been rolling out Stories––a feature that, to be fair, is giving us a case of serious déjà vu (anyone with social smarts knows that “stories” already rolled out in both Snapchat and Instagram). And how does it differ from Facebook Live, anyway? 

Despite the similarities, there’s something to be said for a storytelling tool that caters to a crowd that might be a bit less filter- and hashtag-savvy. For event planners, that means Facebook Stories can help you reach a broader, possibly even slightly older audience, as a recent Pew survey suggests.

So which feature should you choose to spotlight your event? Here, we outline the most ideal event marketing scenarios for Facebook Stories and Stories Live. 

Facebook Stories

In addition to filters and the ability to send direct messages (as opposed to simply posting for your network to view), Facebook Stories allows you to track views and from whom––making it especially useful if you’re pulling data from the event. But aside from standard views, how do you ensure your audience is engaged? 

What It’s Ideal For

•    Telling a sequential “story”––from setup to attendee arrival to the final evening toast, giving your attendees a chance to relive the night can ignite excitement.
•    Capturing behind-the-scenes footage to “tease” the audience in preparation of a big, splashy event (see the third bullet point for Facebook Live tips below). 
•    Leading to a bigger content piece if it’s your (or the client’s) blog, vlog or website you want to direct attendees to.

Facebook Live

In January 2016, Facebook introduced Live to all iPhone users after providing a test run with celebrities and select users. The live-streaming component—designed to compete with other live-streaming vehicles on the market—will allow users to stream live to the public, to friends or just to themselves. So how do you use it to promote or engage attendees at your next event?

What It’s Ideal For

•    Capturing a keynote speaker’s speech and saving it to your camera roll so that it can easily be edited or distributed to other social media platforms.
•    When you want your video to acquire high views, as your entire network on Facebook is usually notified once a Live video is posted.  
•    Filming something exciting and groundbreaking (but most importantly, less than 30 minutes). Facebook Live is, as its name suggests, something that should be lived. Although the video is viewable after the fact, you’ll harness the most engagement and excitement if the content (in the moment) is truly enticing. 

With both Facebook Stories and Facebook Live, follow these tips to ensure a quality video: 

- Make sure you’re connected to Wi-Fi to avoid connection issues.

- Turn off notifications, which can cause the screen to pause.