Not since I discovered Instagram almost four years ago have I been more excited about a social media channel. In its short two month life, this live streaming app knocked out its closest competitor while taking the new media world by storm. Although many have heard of it, many have not heard of it. Within the next six months, it could be a household name. No doubt about it, there is a hot new social media application out right now that has limitless potential and a concept that will draw just about anyone in. It is called Periscope.
For those who feel lost when I write about social media, please bear with me. You need to hear about Periscope. I promise I will make it super simple for you.
Periscope is a live streaming social media application for iPhone and Android. If you get lost with the words “live streaming,” let me make it even more clear. Periscope is a service where you record something on your phone and that video stream is shown LIVE on a global scale. As you broadcast through your phone, whoever is watching has the opportunity to participate by posting questions or comments in real time. I like to think of Periscope as a hybrid between Skype, Chat Roulette, and Twitter.
The power that comes from Periscope is what draws me to it. You can target your “broadcasts” (Periscope’s term for a live video) to your Twitter followers but unless you have a privacy setting on, the whole world can watch. Knowing that you have folks from every corner of the country and abroad watching your content is pretty cool. It adds just a tiny bit of pressure and accountability to what you put out, more so than the other social media services that are out there. Your performance is critiqued. Give your audience garbage and they will embarrass you with mean comments. Produce quality content and you will receive compliments and “hearts,” the equivalent of an Instagram “like” or a Twitter “favorite.”
I have already instituted Periscope at Coastal Carolina University as I briefly wrote about it last Thursday. Since then, I did another broadcast yesterday and I will conduct two more this week. It has taken off here at #CCU. But for this blog post, I want to talk more about it on a personal level as opposed to a professional level.
Periscope just makes you feel special. It is as if you are in the confessional on a “Real World” episode or as if you are holding your own press conference. Quite simply, if you like the feeling of swimming around in the fishbowl while everyone looks in at you, Periscope is your thing.
I have conducted 20 Periscope broadcasts and garnered over 1,600 hearts over the past week and I must say I am a little addicted. It is just so much fun. Throwing ideas at people and conversing with a global audience is a little intoxicating. For me it is also just good practice when it comes to communication. We live in a society where Skype interviews and video correspondence are becoming more and more prominent . To have the opportunity to stage Periscope broadcasts will do nothing but improve my skills in this area.
I also enjoy Periscope because I don’t have a shortage of topics to talk about. When you are a blogger who has published over 800 posts, you have a large library of subjects you can pull from print and have come alive on a Periscope broadcast. For example, last night I chatted about whether I should go to Great Clips for my next haircut or go to a more reputable salon, a topic based completely off of a blog post from three years ago. Although the subject was old for me, it was fresh and interesting to my Periscope audience as the questions, suggestions, and jokes steadily came in.
Of course with any social media service, advanced users will make sure it is a two-way street. I can’t get enough of hopping on random broadcasts from all over the nation. You never know what people are going to say and what you are going to learn. Engaging with interesting folks is a lot of fun. In the past few days I have gone to sleep early in the morning just because I was watching people on Periscope. Users can be very creative, honest, and entertaining.
If you aren’t on Periscope yet, I encourage you to download the app and explore. Although I have anointed social media services before that never materialized, I think Periscope is the future. If you ever want to catch me live, make sure to follow me on the service by searching “@brentreser.” Don’t Blink.