Did you know: YouTube and Google work together to make live event video streaming readily accessible (and free!) for anyone with a solid Internet connection? With this technology, the opportunities for businesses to expand event participation, grow product awareness, and increase their return on investment are huge.
Check out our brief guide to ensure you’re prepared to take full advantage of YouTube live streaming at your next event!
1) Establish Your Online Presence
The most important step toward reaping the benefits of live streaming is to create and verify your YouTube account. This does two important things:
1. Gives you access to YouTube’s streaming service
2. Enables you to take advantage of Google+ Hangouts on Air and create live two-way broadcasts, which allow you to interact directly with potential customers.
Once you’ve verified your account, spend some time building out your Google+ profile page and YouTube channel page with pertinent information about your organization, including the dates, times, and locations of any upcoming events. Creating engaging pages will help entice potential online viewers to both watch your archived video streams and virtually (if not physically) participate in your future events.
2) Promote Your Event on Social Media
From assembling high-profile presenters or performers to disseminating information widely about your event through paper flyers, online ads, and direct email marketing campaigns, you are probably already doing a great job of promoting your physical event.
When it comes to promoting the live stream of your event, you also need to have a strong online presence on platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. Social media is possibly the most important factor in growing your event’s online audience. What can you do on social media to boost your event?
• Interact with your company’s followers
• Periodically remind people about your event
• Post updates about your event’s speakers or guests
• Incentivize participation with promotions
These are all great ways to drive online traffic to your live stream and boost your event’s exposure.
3) Carefully Plan and Produce Your Online Event
Once you’ve verified your YouTube account and begun cultivating an online audience, it is time to start planning your online event. Think of this almost like a live television production: a one-take recording of a real-world event that will be broadcast to anyone who joins the live feed.
As such, you need to consider issues like viewing angles, lighting, and sound in the context of both your real-world event and your live-streaming feed. Make sure, for example, that your recording equipment is set up so people won’t pass directly in front of a camera and microphones won’t pick up background conversations. You will also, of course, need to consider ways to make elements like cameras and microphones unobtrusive, and instruct your guest and staff members to pay attention to both audiences simultaneously.
4) Take Advantage of Two-Way Communication Features
The best live streaming events make the online audience feel as though they are participating alongside the actual guests at your event. A great and easy way to improve your online audience’s connection is to use two-way communication features that enable virtual audience participation.
Using Google+ Hangouts on Air, you can invite online attendees to submit questions to a moderator or even interact directly with the host of your event using text or video chat. By creating avenues like this for online participation, attendees feel embraced by your brand and are encouraged to spread the word.