Video has long reigned as the king of digital content, and livestreaming takes it to the next level. You can stream live videos directly to your social media followers, connecting you with your audience more personally than ever before. Not only does livestreaming enhance your interaction with existing customers, but it exposes your brand to a wider audience of potential customers. Learn more about how livestreaming has become an increasingly easy and engaging way to connect with audiences across Facebook, Instagram and YouTube, and what you need to get started.
A standard external USB webcam is sufficient for most livestreams, and the leading brands offer consistent quality at a budget-friendly price. If you plan on filming livestreams regularly and have fast internet speeds, consider investing in a professional video camera that delivers true HD quality. Most webcams can be placed on a desk or mounted on a computer monitor, but larger video cameras may perform better with the use of a tripod. You may also need to purchase a USB extension cable and/or HDMI cable depending on your setup and the inter-compatibility of your devices. Certain apps even make livestreaming from a smartphone or tablet a viable option.
Most USB microphones will work just fine for your livestreams, but depending on your budget and goals, you may opt for a microphone in the less than $100 range or a high-end microphone that delivers exceptional range and fidelity of sound. You should also invest in a pair of quality headphones to minimize feedback during your stream.
Depending on the time of day and the position of your camera, you may be able to make do with natural daylight. Adjustable lamps, soft boxes, and light rings are a few options to keep your livestream well-lit. Experiment with various lighting setups to find one that best suits your environment and objective.
Know your topic, format, and duration. What will your broadcast achieve, and what will viewers gain by watching? Will you stream from YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, or another platform? Make sure you and your guests know what to expect from the stream. Creating an outline with time markers can help you produce focused content.
You should go live when most of your followers are likely to be online. You can find out what time is best by using various software or built-in tools on your broadcasting platform. For example, Facebook has a “When your fans are online” metric. Make it a regular event at the same time every day or every week, and post in advance to build hype and let your followers know when they can catch your broadcast.
Pick a catchy headline and keyword-driven description for your livestream. Prepare these before you go live to ensure your viewers can find you.
Regardless of which platform you use to livestream, proper planning and execution can help you engage your audience, increase your exposure, and build a loyal following.