Livestreaming is easy. You just need a phone, an app and internet and you are good to go. Right?
If only it were that simple.
In reality, a good livestream is much more complex. While it’s true that you can now go live with so little effort, the quality and amount of viewers you attract will mostly depend on the effort you put when setting up your broadcast. Little effort equals small audience.
How to Livestream an Event
So, to have an engaging livestream of your event, you need to:
Back Up Everything
If you have two, you have one and if you have one then it’s as good as having none. Always make sure you back up and have an extra pair of everything — cords, a computer, camera, etc. Connectors and audio cables, for instance, are cheap but hard to get on short notice. Always make sure you get one extra of these items when you are making a purchase.
Charge Your Devices
Whether it’s your phone or computer, make sure your devices are ready at all times. Always have a backup battery since livestreaming is a heavy drain on batteries.
Get an Extra Pair of Hands
Get someone to help you with your livestreaming. And as you do this, ensure your connectors and cables are organized in such a way that you can easily tell someone where they can find something. Make sure you label all your devices.
Check Your Internet Connection
Use WiFi if possible. If are relying on a mobile network, make sure you network provider offers reliable Internet service. It is also advisable for you to get a hot spot from a different service provider to act as a backup.
Additionally, you need to check your Internet speed using sites like speedtest.net before you start streaming. Disable any apps that might be running on the background. You should also know your quality options should your Internet speed drop below the expected speed.
Consider Your Livestreaming Platform
There are lots of livestreaming platforms out there. Facebook Live and Periscope are just among a few that can help you reach a broad audience.
Test, Test, Test Again
You need to run a test before going live just to make sure that everything is working as it should. Make sure you are conversant with the mechanics and controls of the live streaming service that you are using. More importantly, ask for feedback from your colleague or friend on the test run.
Consider Your Lighting
For quality videos, you need to consider your location’s lighting. Make sure it’s ideal and avoid backlighting your subject.
For outside filming, consider the sun’s glare as it might prevent your viewers from viewing your video.
Take Care of Sound Quality
To minimize the background noise, consider using a headphone-mic combo or a lapel mic. However, if it is windy, find some sort of cover to block the wind. Foam wind covers on lapel mics helps.
Also, avoid having private conversations near active mics.
Live Streaming Using your Phone
If you have a prepared presentation then you should use a tripod and a lapel mike for good quality sound. However, for raw, “spur of the moment” broadcasts, you can hold your phone with one hand and use headphones or the built-in mic.