Live streaming is the hottest new outreach technique available, and there are many social media experts who understand the need to live stream in order to drive traffic. Far fewer understand just what live streaming is (and is not), why it is important, and some of the key things to keep in mind when putting up live content. Youtube is second only to Facebook for networking and only to Google for internet searches and is a great place to build a live stream audience. Here we cover the basics on how to stream on Youtube.
What Is Streaming On YouTube?
Live streaming has become simple to implement, requiring only a camera and a stable internet connection. Live streaming on YouTube is the process of running a video and audio feed onto the internet in real time, meaning as events unfold. Live streaming also has the capacity to produce recorded archives of events.
Why It Is Important To Know How To Stream On YouTube?
Live streaming just makes sense from an outreach perspective. Video outreach has been hot for a while, and live streaming videos have now supplanted pre-recorded videos as the way to reach an audience. Live streaming has many qualities that make it superior to video.
Live streaming is interactive. It allows the audience to participate with the host and with each other. Questions can be answered immediately, and comments can be responded to in real time by using a moderator and carefully observing the process of comments.
Live streaming cost very little, and mostly, it only costs you your time. Live streaming can be done with any type of high definition webcam, laptop camera, or smartphone camera and a high-speed, stable, internet connection.
When live streaming, the audience gets to see what really happens behind the scenes. Showing off a demonstration of a new product, showing how things are produced, or introducing the audience to staff members helps to build transparency, which is highly valued.
Successful outreach is no longer about targeting individual customers. It is about building a community. Nearly everyone will now look to reviews and experiences of others before committing, so providing a live streaming space for an interested community to congregate is essential.
Live streaming allows the opportunity to provide more in-depth education about your product or service. Offering some education with no motivation to sell something is a benefit to the organization as a whole. All live streaming videos can be used in the future for educational archives.
Once you have run through one live streaming event, it becomes really easy to know how to stream on YouTube again in the future. The initial set up may take some practice, but once you do one you can easily integrate live streaming into your regular outreach plan.
10 Tips On How To Stream On YouTube
We assume that you already know the basics on how to stream on YouTube, and we intend to provide you with some tips to make your live streaming more successful. YouTube provides basic tutorials to get you streaming in minutes. Here are the top 10 tips on how to stream on YouTube.
1. Plan Ahead
Live streaming on YouTube requires some steps before you can start. Your account must be verified by YouTube, which can take up to 24 hours. Also, it is a good idea to send out invites and announcements about the upcoming live stream to gather a greater audience. You will need to ensure all your hardware and software are in order, and that you have a system that can manage live streaming.
2. Market Your Live Stream
Share your live stream event to all social networks ahead of time, and encourage friends and followers to come to the live streaming event to get likes, share, and comments. Use keywords in your video description, but do not overuse them. Remind people of the event a few days ahead of time and the day of. Live streaming to an empty audience will be no fun for you and will not encourage future viewers.
3. Research Methods
There are three ways that YouTube has set up for you to live stream. “Stream now” is set up as a mostly hands-off experience, so YouTube starts and stops the stream for you at prearranged times. “Events” lets you preview before being live, have backup streams, and allows you to start and stop the streaming when you want. If you want to stream from your phone, use the “Mobile” option to stream from your app. Using a computer and Chrome, then the “Webcam” eliminated the need for an encoder.
4. Understand Encoders
To put a live stream up, you must first download encoding software which will enable you to grab content, video, audio, etc and send it to YouTube. Download the encoding software early and understand it to avoid pitfalls. YouTube recommends you configure your encoder two hours ahead of time and start it 15 minutes before your planned live stream starting time. Preview it if possible and have a backup encoder in case of primary encoder failure.
5. Check Your Equipment
There is nothing more frustrating for a live streaming audience than issues caused by poor planning. Ensure that you have a high definition camera that records video and audio. Use simple equipment set up when you first start so that there are fewer pieces with the potential to fail. If you are not sure, test it all out with a prerecorded video first to troubleshoot before you have invited a live streaming audience. Testing equipment will allow you to know where to look (at the camera!), how far your microphone can pick up audio, and whether video and audio work at the upload speeds you have available.
6. Check Your Internet
Testing your network speed and reliability ahead of time is a good idea as well. Outbound (upload) bandwidth must be high enough to stream, and you must have a total bit rate that is less than the bandwidth available. YouTube recommends you have about 20% extra of each. Ensure that your network is reliable, and it is being used by as few people as possible during the time you will be live streaming. Either an unreliable network or too many people taking up bandwidth can lead to slow or interrupted streams.
7. Don't Cheat
Live streaming on YouTube is designed to be live, yet many people investigate how to stream on YouTube with no intention of actually doing so. Organizations that try to bypass this system, by running prerecorded videos through various online programs to try to cheat the live streaming, will usually get flagged by YouTube, Google, or both. Be alive with personality for your live streaming. Producing a more transparent and potentially awkward video is one of the side effects of live streaming. No one expects a polished production and may be suspicious if your live stream looks rehearsed.
8. Pay Attention To Settings
There are many setting within YouTube that allows you to customize the live streaming experience. Privacy settings allow you to determine who you want to see the live stream video, so be sure your intended audience can get in. Maturity ratings give you some leeway with community guidelines; if your video stars may have foul mouths, consider age restricting the video yourself before YouTube does it for you. Set up sharing settings ahead of time to automatically include the live stream on your other social networking platforms. Spend time investigating the settings ahead of time.
9. Follow YouTube Community Guidelines
Your YouTube account, or your ability to live stream, will be at risk if your live stream violates the community guidelines set up by YouTube. You are held responsible for what happens in your video and what occurs in the comments section. The first violation may cause a three-month suspension from live streaming at all. YouTube community guidelines restrict things such as nudity, sexual content, unsafe practices, hate, violence, spam, threats, impersonation, violations of privacy and more. Review these guidelines before beginning your first live stream.
10. Polish Your Video
After the live streaming is over, there are many things you can do to go back and polish your live stream records. Fill in all the advanced options on YouTube, add annotations and information cards and expand your responses to comments. Add custom thumbnails to every live stream video recorded. Post the recording of the live stream on your website, blog, or social networking site and use it as an invitation for the next live streaming event. Giving people a taste of what they could experience is one of the best ways to build an audience.
Your first live stream videos will be experiments on how to stream on YouTube, so start small. Make your first attempts simple, such as introducing a member of your organization with a few interview questions. The simplicity of implementing a live stream makes the question of how to stream on YouTube less daunting. If you launch your live streaming campaign with a well moderated live stream that is only a few minutes in length, you will have a nicely finished product and get a firm understanding of how to stream on YouTube.