Ever wondered what a Livestream is, or what kind of equipment you should have before going live? Wonder no more.
Because with a bit of preparation and the right equipment, Live Streaming can be an easy way to get creative, boost your brand, and hone essential screen production skills.
If you’re curious about filmmaking, you can enroll in a degree in filmmaking or a bachelor of screen production and use Live Streaming as practice. You might not know this, but the preparation for a Livestream is excellent practice for screen production students. It takes careful planning and an awareness of your audience.
But first, let’s understand what Livesteaming is and how to do it the right way.
What is Livestreaming?
Live Streaming lets you create, share, and watch videos in real-time across the web. Unlike regular content, which can be chopped, changed, edited, and polished to perfection, live-streaming invites brands and users to share raw and unedited footage in real-time.
Live Streaming has gained popularity as it allows users to interact with brands, celebrities, and other users on a more personal level. Similar to TV, people can tune in and watch you live and, on some platforms, interact with you and ask questions or give donations.
Where can I live stream? What’s the difference between private and public streams?
If you’re looking to host a live stream, the most popular streaming websites and apps are Facebook Live, Instagram Live, TikTok Live, YouTube, and Twitch TV.
When Live Streaming, you have an option to make the stream private or public.
Private streams are often used for business conferences or meetings, ticketed events or talks, and even private shows. Usually, the host will distribute a password-protected channel, and users across the globe can tune in at the designated time to watch the stream.
Public streams are open to anyone on the platform. Many well-known streamers in the space have dedicated weekly or nightly sessions, which you can tune into like a radio show.
Public streams have the potential to generate millions of viewers. The record for peak viewers on a live stream is currently held by Spanish streamer TheGrefg, who amassed a whopping 2.4 million viewers on a stream where he unveiled a new Fortnite skin on Twitch.
How to Begin Live Streaming
Ready to share with the world? Here’s what you’ll need to Livestream:
– A video and audio source: these could be your phone, a laptop, a camera, and microphone, or other equipment with an internet connection. Many people prefer to have a stand or tripod to help hold their camera in place during the stream.
– Streaming software: also known as a video encoder. This software takes your computer’s video and audio input and transmits it to your streaming platform of choice. There are plenty of free options available, including OBS Studio, StreamLabs OBS, XSplit, vMix, and Restream Studio.
– A streaming platform: this is where your stream will go live. Most social media platforms offer streaming services so that you can use your preferred social media platform.
– A stable Internet connection: an unstable connection will cause your stream to freeze, buffer, or cut off entirely. Ensure your internet connection is strong, stable, and capable of streaming.
How to prepare for a Livestream
As it’s a live stream, many people think you can “go live” without any preparation. However, a successful stream is anything but impromptu and instead should be viewed as an opportunity to hone your screen production skills.
As natural as Livestreamers may seem, everything they discuss is carefully scripted and mapped out before going live. By planning what they want to discuss or show on the stream, they ensure that the stream is as beneficial as possible for both them and the audience.
If you are currently enrolled in a degree in filmmaking or a bachelor of screen production, preparing for a Livestream is similar to preparing for any screen production. You need a plan to keep viewers engaged.
To prepare for a Livestream:
– Time it right: if you want people to watch your stream, you need to go live when they’re available to watch it. Streaming at 3 am won’t work if you’re looking to capture a local audience. Aim for evenings, weekends, and when people won’t be working or sleeping.
– Find your niche: who are you looking to engage with? Who is your audience, and what are you looking to stream about? There are endless possibilities for your niche, including music, political discussions, gaming, fitness, movie reviews, and beauty tutorials—which niche is suited for your content?
– Establish goals: what are you looking to get out of the stream personally? Establishing your goals will help you measure success or identify where you can improve. For example, are you looking to establish yourself as an expert on a movie genre? Your goal could be to host weekly streams with an audience of 30 people minimum. Are you looking to promote your brand? Maybe your goal is to have three new potential customers by the end of the stream.
– Promotion: how will people know about your stream? Promote your stream before you go live so people know where to find you. Social media is a great way to advertise your upcoming stream, just don’t forget to include a link.
Stick to a consistent streaming schedule, and remember: streaming should be fun! You might not hit your goals the first time streaming, or you might not have any viewers the first time. Don’t despair. The secret to Livestreaming is consistency.
Are you falling in love with Live Streaming? It could mean that video production is perfect for you! Consider enrolling in a bachelor of screen production or a degree in filmmaking and start chasing your dream career!