When it comes to your online business strategy, big or small, live streaming can be a great feature to explore and add. In this article, we would like to show you how to seamlessly run live streams with some useful tips on what devices to use, what to prepare in advance and how to make sure your live stream will go as smoothly as possible.
The rise of live video tools
During the lockdowns in the pandemic, face-to-face human interaction became sparse (outside the ones in your household, of course). We had to (and many of us still do) work from home and get used to meeting up with colleagues via online conferencing tools such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams. These online conferencing tools came in quite handy, at first. One of the advantages of these online meetings is that you can set up a call in a jiffy and for presentation purposes you can easily share your screen with the rest of the team.
Of course, there are some challenges too. It can take quite some time to prepare for a Zoom or Teams meeting, if you were the one hosting it. At first, you have to pick your top half of formal clothing (the bottom half doesn’t matter), prepare your presentation and practice for your click-for-the-next-sheet-moments.
Next to screen sharing, every conferencing tool offers a few standard features, such as chatting options and ‘conference room management’. However, there are no ‘smart’ features you could use in order to improve your business strategy after the meeting. Think about—for example—analyzing your engagement data after the call. In addition, every member in a Zoom or Teams meeting is a participant. So there is no leaning back and enjoying the show for your viewers, unless they turn off their microphone and camera, of course. When it comes to using video conferencing tools for business, you might miss out on some commercial benefits.
The difference between video conferencing and live streaming
Next to the growing demand of video conferencing tools during the pandemic, the demand for more functionalities in online video presentation grew exponentially. Especially for those of us who like to use online video tools in their business strategy. This is where live streaming comes into play.
The use of live streaming increased a whopping 1200% at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. Which is no surprise, given the fact that live streaming comparatively allows for complete control on what your viewers see during the stream. This includes functionalities as placing logos and text elements on your screen, featuring sponsors and showing brand elements. Another major added feature is the possibility to analyze your data afterwards, which is great for improving your business strategy when it comes to using online video tools.
Why live streaming is great for business
Did you know that more than 60% of consumers are likely to buy a product after watching some kind of video about the product online? More than 82% of consumers prefer seeing social media videos over posts. On top of that, viewers watch nearly 6 minutes longer when a video is live and not recorded in advance. When you add these learnings together, you will quickly find out why live streaming is an excellent way to maximize the engagement of your current (and potential) customers.
In comparison with video conferencing tools, there is no limit on the number of viewers who can join you in your live stream. This is great for expanding your potential user base. Whether you are showcasing new services or products, building your brand, (new) relationships and/or communities, live streaming will be a great tool to add to your e-learning business strategy.
Live stream checklist
By now, you will probably see why we are quite enthusiastic about live streaming. If you kept reading so far—you might be too. So let’s go over the best practices to live stream, so you can try it out yourself!
1. Make sure the gear is right
First things first, you will need some decent tools to make sure your live stream will go ever so smoothly. Make you sure you have the following items in check before beginning:
- A stable internet connection;
- Good professional or HD camera (with enough battery);
- Good microphone;
- A soundproof room or location;
- Good lighting (artificial or natural);
- A script or summary of points you would like to discuss.
Got your gear in check? Good, now let’s continue with the software.
2. Choose the right software
Quite a lot of video streaming platforms offer the possibility to live stream. Of course, you choose your software based on quality and stability. However, it is important to take a few other things to take into consideration when selecting the right software for you and your business. Take in mind the following things:
- Content security;
- Is your video content safe, shielded and protected?
- Where is the traffic leading to?
- Streaming services like YouTube direct the traffic to their website, instead of yours.
- How is the pricing?
- When software is offered for free, look for certain conditions that might not benefit you. Or it might be too expensive with fees consistently increasing.
- Are there additional features next to live streaming, like analytics?
- In order to improve your business strategy, it is very beneficial to be able to analyze data from analytics, make conclusions about what worked and what not for the next time.
You guessed it - Kinescope offers all the items above and more when it comes to live streaming. Feel free to discover Kinescope here, but before you start, let’s continue with our list.
3. Mic check 1-2
When you have the right gear and software you are ready to rock and roll. In advance make sure everything is working accordingly. So check your camera settings, your battery percentage, your microphone, lighting and script. Also make sure your viewers know in advance that you are planning on streaming live, to gain maximum exposure. Or use the element of surprise, it is totally up to you!
When you are struggling to find a topic for your first live stream, consider the following:
- Host a live demonstration of your product or services
- Give a live presentation about your company’s services
- Have a chat with Q&A
- If you want to get really fancy; choose a weekly or monthly topic and invite a special guest
Bonus tip: To make the videos even more exciting for your viewers, you can organize giveaways or special promotions as part of the live streams.
So you have your gear, software, date, topic, and optionally your script or summary with items on hand. Everything is working and ready to go. Now it is showtime!
When it comes to hosting a good live stream, two things are important: preparation and experience. Make sure you are well-prepared and practice beforehand if needed.
A pro-tip for during the live-stream is to plan cues beforehand. Think about questions, certain key phrases and (product) images beforehand. This way, you can pinpoint what works for you and your business (or doesn’t) after the live stream by analyzing the data afterwards. Do not worry if everything doesn’t go perfectly on the first try! The more experience you get, the more natural it will go the next time.
Like mentioned above, the aftermath is equally essential in terms of analyzing the data of your live stream. Study your cues and spikes and dips in your engagement graph to learn about what kind of things work for you and your business. Implement them in the next live stream to examine if these cues are beneficial for your business strategy.
Plan your first live stream with Kinescope
Get started with Kinescope and discover the benefits of live broadcasts:
- Create directly from the dashboard a one time broadcast or recurring events without restrictions on the number of participants.
- Connect with your OBS, Larix, vMix, Zoom or other popular RTMP transmit programs
- Record your broadcast to watch later again
- Analyze the results with the live analytics
But there’s more! With Kinescope you can securely upload thousands of videos on our private infrastructure, customize the player, integrate with many LMS (Learning management systems) and benefit from our open-source.
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