Everyone is talking about live streaming and especially on Facebook, with Facebook Live events. You may not feel ready to fly solo just yet on a broadcast. Perhaps doing live streaming interview style with a co-worker, or an expert in your industry would help ease you into the whole live streaming world, but Facebook hasn’t opened up the multi-user feature on their live streaming product yet, so what else can you do?
There are a few tools out that allow you to connect with another presenter and pull both of your video feeds into Facebook to “go live.” One of the tools we recently tested and really like is BeLive.tv.
Here’s why we like BeLive.tv:
- Super easy to set up and use. No bulky client to download or equipment to purchase. Simply sign up, connect to your Facebook account and schedule your first event. Once it is scheduled, you will be given a link to send to anyone you want to join you as a guest or co-host. Anyone else can watch and participate in your event through chat. There is no limit there.
- The cost right now is …FREE (They are officially still in BETA and therefore offering it free for now. When they start charging a fee, I am guessing it will be under $40 a month to stay in line with other similar tools).
Tips to Keep in Mind as the Host of the BeLive Event for Facebook Live:
- You can have one guest, or co-host, with the host on screen at a time (two people total). I have read that they are working on the ability to add more, but as of March 2016, you and one guest will be shown on screen.
- You can have multiple guests slotted in your event as long as you have given the link to join you on screen and guest number one drops off or hangs up before guest two joins in. So if you had 4 people to interview in one show, you could schedule them all back to back and have them watching the live stream so you could direct the next guest to join in.
- You do not have to have a guest. You may want to just host a BeLive Q&A session or fly solo to discuss something that is on your mind or share tips. Using the BeLive platform allows you to schedule (something you cannot do at this time through Facebook), as well as have very nice features such as adding your name and company in the lower third of your screen (see names in lower third of screen) and pulling questions that are asked in chat, onto the screen to feature them.
- Speaking of questions. During your event, any questions or comments that are typed into Facebook by your viewers are seen inside the BeLive platform. You can simply click on a question or comment to have it pop onto the screen as you answer it. (See Sarah's comment below) The key to remember is to click it again when you are finished to take it off the screen so it doesn't cover your lower-third name tag.
- BeLive.tv works best in Chrome browser, so be sure and have that downloaded prior to beginning the setup.
- Have your guests run a test with you before the show to ensure their video and audio is set up correctly. If you have one guest, simply have them join you in the BeLive platform 15-30 minutes prior to run the tests. If you have more than one guest, you have to run these tests one at a time.
- The only equipment needed would be a computer with a video camera and microphone or smartphone. You may want to use a microphone/headset to plug in for improved audio. TIP (from experience): Do not use a microphone-only plugin as it could affect your ability to hear your guest. Since the microphone is usually plugging into the headset jack. It is fine if you don’t need to hear anyone else speaking, but in this case, use a headset with a mic built in.
- You can schedule your event to broadcast into your personal profile, a group or a business page you manage.
- When you schedule your event, notifications, as well as subsequent reminders, are sent automatically, which is wonderful!
Tips for the Guest Coming on BeLive.tv:
- You will be sent a link to click on the day of the event. Log in a few minutes early (if not several minutes early to practice) and test your microphone and video.
- Do a quick check of your surroundings. You will be on camera and you may want to tidy up around you or be sure there is no confidential information that will appear onscreen.
- You must have a Facebook account to participate. BeLive.tv pulls your name and info from Facebook, at this time, in order to connect you.
- Using Chrome browser is recommended, if not required. Do not wait until the day of the event to download Chrome.
- Just like the host, the only equipment needed would be a computer with a video camera and microphone or smartphone. You may want to use a microphone/headset to plug in for improved audio. TIP (from experience): Do not use a microphone-only plugin as it could affect your ability to hear your guest. Since the microphone is usually plugging into the headset jack. It is fine if you don’t need to hear anyone else speaking, but in this case, use a headset with a mic built in.
- As you are logging in for the first time, you will see a notification “Do you want to allow BeLive access to your microphone and camera.” This is a small message that will appear but watch for it. If you click away or click NO, your computer audio and video will not work. You want to allow the tools to use your camera and microphone. Don’t worry, they won’t snap any selfies on their own.
- Be sure to have strong internet connectivity or strong cell service if you are participating from your phone. Just like using Skype, Facetime or any other live video tool, your internet connectivity is crucial to a smooth live streaming experience.
- Have fun! Your personality is what will make the event fun for the viewers. Relax and don't try and be scripted. Bullet points are fine but don't read your answers onscreen.
So how do you begin? Can you test this before you schedule your first public event? Yes. Go in and schedule an event you will see at the bottom a TESTING ONLY-DO NOT POST option. This will allow you to get comfortable with the features before diving in.
If you need more tips on creating better social videos, be sure and download “3.5 STEPS and 8 TIPS for BETTER SOCIAL VIDEOS”
Connect with us on any social channel or join our DIY.social business building group on Facebook. I look forward to connecting!