Wowza's created a great downloadable guide for live streaming success on Facebook. You'll find a link to it at the bottom of the original article, but take a look at the at their 7 tips for what not to do!
If you are ready to take your Facebook Live streaming to the next level, you'll want to check out Wowza's ClearCaster appliance
. It'll help you fool-proof your stream and is worth seriously considering investing in.
Also, check out our article: Videoguys Top Products for Facebook & YouTube Live Fall 2017
Read on for the top 7 mistakes to avoid:
So you’ve decided your organization needs to be on Facebook Live, and you’ve learned some best practices for creating professional live streams. But almost as important as following best practices is knowing what not to do. A poorly executed Facebook Live session can actually hurt your marketing strategy, making your brand look unprofessional—and, potentially, driving your followers away.
We recently released a comprehensive resource, The Wowza Ultimate Guide to Facebook Live Streaming
, which includes feedback from social media experts and video professionals about Facebook Live pitfalls they commonly see. Based on their insights, as well as our 10-plus years of experience leading the streaming-media industry, we’ve created this list of the eight biggest mistakes to avoid on Facebook Live:
1. The Awkward Pause
Whether it’s a radio show, a TV program or a Facebook Live session, “dead air” is a broadcaster’s worst nightmare. Starting your stream by asking, “Are we on?” may prompt viewers to lose interest and click to the next item in their News Feed. And if you seem unprepared in your videos, it may hurt your online reputation.
Not knowing exactly when you’re live can also lead to sudden starts and stops. This happens when the person behind the camera alternately cues and halts the performance, based on their best guess about when the stream has started. There’s a reason terrestrial broadcasts start with a “3-2-1” countdown: On-screen talent needs time to get ready for their close-up.
Know when you’re live.
The only way to completely avoid unfortunate “hot mic” moments, awkward pauses or false starts is to use an encoding and solution that’s integrated with the Facebook Live API, such as the Wowza ClearCaster™ appliance
. Its integrated countdown clock will tell you, with frame-specific accuracy, when you’re actually on the air.
You can also get a designated start time by scheduling your broadcast in advance. Not only does this ensure your followers know where to go and when, it also allows you to extend your reach by leveraging the recorded asset after the live stream ends. It may not be frame-accurate, but at least you’ll know the exact time your broadcast begins.
2. ‘Are There Any Questions From the Audience?’
Nothing disrupts the flow of a Facebook Live session like stopping to ask someone off-screen if there are any questions from followers. Even worse is when the person monitoring Facebook shouts a question to the host that viewers can’t hear.
One of the best ways to engage Facebook Live viewers is through broadcasts that incorporate interactive elements, such as Q&A sessions, audience polls or follower-driven segments where viewers determine key parts of the production.
Hosting live Q&As may seem intuitive, but according to social media marketing experts, many hosts struggle with how best to conduct them. The most important thing to remember is that on-screen hosts should speak directly to the camera, mimicking a face-to-face dialogue with viewers as much as possible. In order to do this, your hosts need real-time access to questions and comments, so they can respond without breaking the natural rhythm of the show.
Eliminate the moderator.
Many broadcasters will give hosts an iPad with the Facebook stream pulled up, or set up a laptop in front of them. The best option of all—especially for high-profile broadcasts with a large comment volume—is to use Wowza ClearCaster. It’s the only appliance on the market that deeply integrates with the Facebook Live API to aggregate comments and Live Reactions into a talent-facing feed, which can be displayed on an external monitor for easier viewing.
Unfiltered communication with fans and consumers helps build a loyal following. And given that today’s consumers are increasingly skeptical of brands, with 84 percent of Millennials distrusting traditional advertising, it’s more important than ever to establish personal relationships with your base.
3. You Can’t Go Pro From a Phone
Shaky hands, poor audio quality and network instability are an inherent hazard of going live on mobile devices—not to mention, your stream can be interrupted if someone tries to call you in the middle of a broadcast.
Quality and reliability are at risk with mobile broadcasting, as well. When you’re at the mercy of an LTE or a WiFi connection, your stream is more likely to drop. And since Facebook accepts mobile video differently, you can’t stream in the same high resolution as you can on a dedicated camera.
Invest in equipment.
In short: If you’re serious about Facebook Live streaming, invest in a basic studio setup. All you really need are:
- At least two cameras, so one can capture a locked, wide shot, and another can shoot close-ups and cut-in footage.
- A switcher to toggle between the two camera feeds.
- Some basic audio equipment, such as a boom and/or some lavalier microphones to pick up on-air talents’ dialogue.
- A dedicated space to shoot, whether it’s a formal studio, an empty office or just a corner of the room where you can set up your equipment.
- An encoder to deliver your live stream to the Facebook platform.
- A reliable internet connection.
When it comes to encoders and switchers, the most important thing to remember is this: Purpose-built hardware is always more reliable than software.
Software is dependent on a laptop, and video encoding requires a ton of processing power. Even a pro-level laptop will often slow down, drop frames or experience connection issues to the point where it can’t switch properly.
Facebook itself encourages the use of hardware encoders when streaming with the Facebook Live API
, since they provide greater stability and more successful delivery than software. If you must rely on software, make sure the laptop that’s running it is dedicated only to encoding and/or switching.
Learn how to use it.
You can find equipment that fits your budget at any level. The more you spend, the more special features you’ll get—just make sure that whatever you purchase, you learn how to use it. According to our social media experts, getting gear they can’t master is a common pitfall of new Facebook broadcasts. You’ll be able to make better content than someone with higher-quality equipment if you know how to use yours better than they do....[continue reading]