Blab.im: Why Your Business Should Consider Blab
Want to hear about the latest live-casting technology?
To discover more about Blab, I interview Joel Comm.
More About This Show
The Social Media Marketing podcast is an on-demand talk radio show from Social Media Examiner. It’s designed to help busy marketers and business owners discover what works with social media marketing.
Joel will explore Blab live casting and why your business might want to consider using it.
You’ll discover the difference between Blab.im and other live-streaming platforms, as well as some tips to get started.
Share your feedback, read the show notes and get the links mentioned in this episode below.
Here are some of the things you’ll discover in this show:
How Joel got started with video
Joel shares how he signed up for his first YouTube account in 2006. The next year, he decided that video online needed to be kicked up a notch.
Inspired by the rise of YouTube and the reality show The Apprentice, in 2007 Joel produced and hosted the world’s first competitive Internet reality show, called The Next Internet Millionaire, which received an honorary Webby award for reality TV.
In 2008 UStream.tv became one of the first tools for streaming live video from a desktop, so he started doing The Joel Comm Show from his offices with co-host Dan Nickerson. They did a weekly interactive show that was usually about an hour long. Sometimes they would have a guest in his studio office, and other times they would just engage with the people who were commenting. It’s very similar to how people comment on Blab.
Joel believes streaming video is a great way to communicate, broadcast, share and deliver content, and build community.
Listen to the show to learn what was involved with filming The Next Internet Millionaire.
Joel and Blab
Joel, who has been using Meerkat, Periscope and Live for Facebook Mentions for several months, thinks it was Mia Voss who first told him about Blab. She mentioned it at the beginning of August, and he started using Blab a couple of weeks later. He has been immersed in the platform ever since.
He hosts two different shows and then logs on at other random times, either to do a Blab that’s not really a show, to hang out and talk with people or to be interviewed on somebody else’s show.
Joel explains that Blab, in its simplest form, is a video conferencing tool that allows up to four people to be on screen at once. It’s integrated with a chat room, and whoever wants to watch a blab can do so. Viewers are also able to interact with each other and the hosts.
Blab is integrated with Twitter (your login is your Twitter account), and you’re able to easily tweet from the Blab interface. There’s a mobile app available for iOS devices and an Android app is on the way.
What’s so cool about Blab is that it works, Joel says. While Google hangouts sometimes require a whole tutorial, Blab is so simple that most people get it intuitively. Audience members click to request to join a seat. When the host approves you, you’re on the show.
People ask Joel what’s better: Periscope or Blab. He believes that’s not the right question, because it’s comparing apples to oranges.
Periscope, Meerkat and Facebook Live Mentions are all one-to-many broadcasting apps. They allow one person to instantly reach and talk at their audience. It’s only a conversation in that those watching can comment, and whoever is hosting can refer to those questions and comments on video. Unless you have somebody right next to you on the screen, it’s just one person.
Blab puts the “social” component into social media in the most profound and effective way. Blab allows people to be face to face in real time without being in the same room.
Live casting and live streaming are two different things. One is not better than the other, Joel says. They are different and each one has its place.
Listen to the show to discover how influencers and early adopters feel about Blab.
How Joel uses Blab
Joel uses Blab in three ways. He does two regular shows and off-the-cuff blabs.
First, there’s The Joel Comm Show, which serves as the relaunch of the podcast Joel put on sabbatical in January 2014. For this blab, Joel has been interviewing associates and peers, including Bryan Kramer, E. Brian Rose, Mari Smith, Robert Scoble, Michael Hyatt and Perry Marshall.
He uploads the recorded blab MP3 to his iTunes account, and has started to use his mixing board and add music as well. It’s not nearly as polished as his previous broadcast, Joel admits, but he is providing content to his iTunes subscribers.
On Blab, you can start and stop recording whenever you want with the click of a button.
After the broadcast, Blab will take all of the recorded content and compile it into one file.
Joel also does an evening show with Vincenzo Landino, called BlabTalk Live. It’s more of an entertainment-type show with fun music, goofing around (they’ll talk about words people have nominated to the Blabsaurus) and guest interviews.
They have interviewed Jay McMichael, a senior photojournalist from CNN, reality stars Spencer Pratt and Heidi Montag from The Hills, Tyson Apostol from Survivor, David H. Lawrence from Heroes and more. At an hour, they’ll stop and have even more fun. They’ve had karaoke, stupid human tricks, jokes, etc.
The third way Joel uses Blab is spontaneously. He’ll just start a blab and begin talking to people. Those are always off the record, he adds, so you have to be there.
To start a blab, click the link in the upper-right portion of your browser, or in the lower-right corner on your mobile device.
Put in a title and pick up to three tags. Then either start the blab immediately or schedule one in the future. Pick a date and time, and then schedule it.
Once you schedule a blab, the people who are following you and have notifications turned on are immediately notified that you’ve scheduled a blab. You can see in real time people who are subscribing, just as you can see people who come into your room in real time.
Listen to the show to hear how Social Media Examiner is using Blab.
Businesses using Blab
Joel has seen people do American Idol-type blabs with performers and cooking shows where people cook on-camera, talk to the audience and bring in guests. He has heard of people using Blab to teach in the classroom. It’s great for support groups and special interest groups too.
Then, there’s the philanthropic approach. Joel raised money for WATERisLIFE.com on one of his blabs. They were talking about WATERisLIFE, and someone decided to auction off a $130 microphone. It sold for $401 and all of the money went to the charity. Others who were bidding and didn’t win the auction gave donations, too.
It’s a powerful platform that can be used in so many ways, Joel says.
Listen to the show to hear ideas of how to use the mobile app for remote blabs.
Joel suggests using a desktop connection for your blab. You have a better view of everything that’s going on, and have a stronger connection than you would on a cellular network. The desktop app is more reliable. Plus, you can have an HD webcam positioned so you can see someone’s whole face.
Having a good microphone is really important, Joel adds. You can still blab with your webcam or your computer’s built-in mic, but you minimize the chance of an echo with a microphone. Joel uses the ATR 2100 USB mic.
Robert Scoble does a show called The Gillmor Gang with three others. They talk about the latest tech news, apps or startups. Joel says he could envision a Blab show with the same four people. They don’t bring in other guests and take questions from the audience, but it’s actual programming designed to broadcast one-way.
Listen to the show to learn about rotating guests.
There’s a brand-new service called SumoRank from BuzzSumo.
Visit SumoRank.com and put in your Facebook page, and it will analyze your page. It’s more than just a ranking system. For example, we tried it with the Social Media Examiner Facebook page. It told us our most popular post type, as well as our most popular day of the week and the most popular time to post.
SumoRank shows monthly interactions and the average engagement per post type to give you a feel for whether video versus link versus image post has more engagement. It even analyzes the engagement based on the number of characters inside the post, so you can determine whether short posts have higher engagement than longer posts. Plus, review your top posts over a period of time.
It’s very cool and it’s free. Check it out at SumoRank.com.
Listen to the show to learn more and let us know how SumoRank works for you.
Other Show Mentions
Today’s show is sponsored by Social Media Marketing World 2016.
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The event takes place in San Diego, California on April 17, 18 and 19, 2016.
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Listen to the show!
Key takeaways mentioned in this episode:
- Connect with Joel on his website.
- Watch The Joel Comm Show and BlabTalk Live.
- Subscribe to and watch Joel on Blab.
- Follow Joel on Facebook and Twitter.
- Read Twitter Power 3.0.
- Check out The Apprentice.
- Watch The Next Internet Millionaire.
- Explore Ustream.
- Learn more about Dan Nickerson and Mia Voss.
- Watch Joel’s blabs with Bryan Kramer, E. Brian Rose, Mari Smith, Robert Scoble, Michael Hyatt and Perry Marshall.
- Check out Vincenzo Landino and the Blabsaurus.
- Watch BlabTalk Live episodes with Jay McMichael, Spencer Pratt and Heidi Montag, Tyson Apostol and David H. Lawrence.
- Learn more about WATERisLIFE.
- Get the ATR 2100 USB mic.
- Check out Robert Scoble and The Gillmor Gang.
- Watch this podcast and other Social Media Examiner shows on Blab.
- Follow me and subscribe to my blabs.
- Check out SumoRank.
- Learn more about 2016 Social Media Marketing World.
- Read the 2015 Social Media Marketing Industry Report.
Ways to subscribe to the Social Media Marketing podcast:
- Click here to subscribe via iTunes.
- Click here to subscribe via RSS (non-iTunes feed).
- You can also subscribe via Stitcher.
What do you think? What are your thoughts on Blab? Please leave your comments below.