Live streaming is proving itself to be a popular communication tool in businesses, education and other organisations. Increasingly affordable methods and improving technology have also played a part in its growing popularity.
Are you considering a live streaming an event but unsure where to begin?
Organising a live streaming can be a complicated and demanding process, as there is plenty to consider. If you are new to this, we have put together a quick 10 step guide to help you produce a high-quality broadcast.
Step 1: Test, test, test
Don’t wait to test the equipment, sound and video quality on the day. Run tests a few days before the planned live streaming! Make sure your camera focuses, your laptop runs efficiently, and all cables are in good condition. You may also need to check the compatibility of the planned equipment with the internet bandwidth.
Step 2: Power Source
While it may seem obvious, it’s important to make sure you know the position of the power outlets at the event location. Always go prepared! Bring extra cable reels or gang extensions so that powering your equipment doesn’t become an issue. Let’s face it, chances are that not all of your equipment is battery powered.
Step 3: Check your internet connection
This is THE most important part of live streaming, if you don’t have an internet connection then you won’t be able to stream. When streaming live video, an internet upload speed of at least 1 mbps is needed to broadcast. So, checking that your internet connection can handle a live broadcast is vital. You can check your internet connection via Speedtest.net. Also, consider how you are going to connect to the internet. While an ethernet (hard-ware connection) is the best, strong Wifi connections work just as well and can even be better depending on speed. If you don’t have an Ethernet or Wifi source, or you have a weak Wifi source, a mobile hotspot is another option. Data can be purchased through most major wireless carriers. Just remember to buy enough data to cover the broadcast.
Step 4: Bandwidth versus time of day
Consider the time of day for the streaming. Is it going to be peak or off-peak? Could buffering be an issue? Off peak times will certainly reduce the risk of buffering; however, you will need to weigh this up against how it will impact your target audience.
Step 5: Be organised
While not often considered, being organised plays a crucial part in the success of any broadcast. Making sure your equipment is tidy and organised will eliminate any potential headaches from losing items, or the risk of a health and safety incident. Check for tangled up or trailing cables which could get unplugged or be a potential hazard. Have a checklist of everything that you need and take the time to check the items before and after the event.
Step 6: Live Streaming Platform
There are plenty of platforms out there that offer a range of features depending on whether you pay or not. Are there specific features that you will need like analytics, automatic video on-demand (VOD) archiving or commenting / live chat? Consider who you want to be able to view the live streaming and if you need a secure feed? Will the live event need recording for viewings for those who were unable to attend? Knowing what you want will make choosing your streaming platform easier.
Step 7: Monitor your live streaming
You may be thinking why bother with monitoring the live streaming especially when you have run tests prior to the event. WRONG – there is still the potential for something to happen and monitoring the event can help prevent an incident occurring. Monitoring does involve teamwork; you will need one person to watch the live stream and look for any problems with the video and audio quality, and another to resolve any issues that may arise.
Step 8: Are you covered?
If you are using a public place check you have the correct permissions and covered for any potential health and safety incidents. If children or vulnerable people are involved, you may need to get the appropriate permissions from parents or guardians.
Step 9: Advertise the event
If you want your live streaming event to be a success, then consider how you are going to market it. Different types of events require different types of marketing campaigns. Here are some things to consider:
- Advertise the event on your website and email signatures
- Use social media – put together a plan
- Organise press coverage
- If it is a community event – advertise on a community website
- Send out invitations to the event via post or email
- Word of mouth – talk about the event with colleagues, customers and other persons of interest.
Step 10: Review
Could you have done anything different. The answer is probably yes! Spend time after the event to review how it went and what you would do differently.
We know that producing a great live stream takes time and effort. If you are organising an event which you would like streamed or recorded and would like expert help, then contact us today on 01244 408990.
Discover here how we helped one customer with a unique set of circumstances that required a live streaming of an event at short notice.