Scoping for Entrepreneurs: How to Use Periscope to Build Your Business

how to use periscope
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Maybe you’ve seen them: People walking around with their smartphones in front of their faces, chatting away and talking about hearts. While it might look unusual, it’s actually all part of an app called Periscope.

Periscope lets you give live video broadcasts and view other live videos. You can have real-time conversations with anyone who tunes in and comments during your broadcast.

All of that is great. But you can also use Periscope to make money.

The app, with its 10 million users watching 40 years of broadcasting each day, offers a new opportunity for you to boost your business’ bottom line. Here’s how you can make it work for you.

How to Use Periscope

First, you’ll need to download the app, which you can get on the iTunes AppStore or Google Play. Next, follow these instructions to sign in with your Twitter account or phone number.

Once you’re set up, follow other users, watch live broadcasts (or replays, which are available for 24 hours) and create your own video broadcasts. Share your “scopes” whenever you want, based on what works best for you and for your target audience.

Periscope’s Greatest Strength: Build Relationships With Subscribers

Periscope facilitates a live, interactive conversation with viewers. This new level of interaction can give your business a significant boost, like it did for Courtney Johnston, who offers copywriting services, training and products for other writers and small business owners.

“People get to know you at lightning speed,” Johnston said. “For me, it’s all about the relationship, and I always try to be helpful.”

Use Periscope as a relationship-building tool — the foundation of a solid income stream. By being authentic (not stiff and scripted) and sharing information your audience wants, you’ll rapidly form new relationships.

This relationship-building pays off when your viewers join your mailing list and then become buyers, so be sure they can find you on the web.

Turn Demos Into Sales

Demonstrate your products or services on Periscope, then mention where your viewers can buy them, the way Johnston does.

“I just sort of mention products I have if they’re relevant to the topic, and people come in and they buy stuff immediately,” she commented. “A certain percentage of people who will always do that.”

Periscope’s not just for buy-it-now products, though. Shaundle Pruitt, a real estate agent in Canton, Ohio, uses Periscope to do online walk-throughs of available properties. Packaging them as live, virtual open houses has generated a lot of interest.

“Sellers are always intrigued,” said Pruitt. He leverages that interest to land listing contracts — the foundation of many successful real estate careers.

Are you an artist with a new release coming up? Offer previews and teasers of new merchandise, music or books to generate interest and preorders. Encourage your audience to share your scopes (and reach new eyes and ears).

Share Your Expertise Through Tutoring or Q&A Sessions

If you’re interested in tutoring, offer sessions in a subject you know well. Have customers purchase the sessions in advance, and then use Periscope’s private broadcast feature to teach anyone, anywhere in the world.

You can even tutor more than one person at a time, meaning your hourly rate has nowhere to go but up.

If you’re an expert in a product or skill people want to know about (like essential oils, resume writing or selling on eBay), set up an “ask me anything” question and answer session. Your followers can pick your brain, you’ll build more credibility and you might even come away with new ideas for your business.

Mention your services and/or products and see how many new clients you pick up — just don’t forget to include your blog or website!

Sell Products and Programs

Direct selling isn’t the most common way to make money on Periscope, but it’s still an effective option.

“I’ve done a couple of flash sales and they worked really well,” said Danielle Ford, a marketing strategist who sells digital products and programs, among other things.

“I can have a conversation with up to hundreds of people at one time about what I’m selling.” The instant Q&A, plus a quick order-by deadline, helps her drive purchases.

If your business is an online enterprise with membership programs, courses and frequent launches, Periscope can be a powerful marketing tool. Shelley Hitz, an author, author coach and business strategist said, “The last push I had for my signature program was at the end of July, and 25% of my new members came from Periscope.”

Will You Make Money With Periscope? 

There’s no limit to the number of ways you can use Periscope to make money. All you need is an idea, some know-how and a smartphone.

Whether it’s by direct selling through product demonstrations, offering a quick how-to or tutorial for a skill you teach, or simply building credibility and trust by being accessible and relatable, live-stream video broadcasting on Periscope could help you earn extra cash or build your business.

Your Turn: Do you use Periscope? Have you tried using it to market your business or make money? Share your experience in the comments!

Ashley Gainer hangs out at, where she makes content for businesses and entrepreneurs, and teaches other writers how to do the same. She also spends a lot of time building pillow forts, making pretend-pancakes for Mr. Hippo and Mr. Puppy, and setting up elaborate wooden railways.