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Top 5 Platforms And Tools To Livestream Events Online 2018

1The return on investment for live video vs pre-recorded is obvious and something that artists can capitalize on. Here are the five best platforms and software tools to get the job done.

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Guest post by Amanda Smith

Live streaming tools are offering fresh, effective and interesting perspectives to influencers. Influencers are no longer interested in delivering personality driven scripts. This can be attributed to the fact that the returns on scripted videos and pre-recorded videos are significantly declining. Live streaming provides a host of benefits such as allowing influencers to address the queries of their audience, make them more accessible to viewers, build trust, refine and fine-tune marketing strategies, etc.

Want to host and broadcast a live streaming event like prominent influencers? Get yourself feature-rich live video streaming software.

Note that not every video streaming software is capable of brilliantly shaping live streaming campaigns. Live streaming software should give you enough leverage to impress your target group.

Without any further delay, let’s take a look at the best 5 live streaming tools. 

Facebook Live

Facebook has more than 2.20 billion active users. Its live streaming platform Facebook Live is all the rage. Ever since its inception, Facebook Live’s popularity rose by 330%

You don’t need any fancy stuff to broadcast an event through Facebook Live. You require a strong data connection. Thanks to its array of in-built emoticons, it’s effortlessly easy to gauge different reactions of your audience. And yes, you can interact with them in real time and get their queries answered in no time by going through their comments.

Live streaming through Facebook Live can drain your phone battery. Also, there are no features that let you add titles and graphics. This can be a big turnoff to influencers who are looking for engagement features. However, it is way better than much popular live video streaming software as it’s free and helps you reach a large audience.   

Periscope

Twitter’s take on live streaming dates back to 2013. In 2013, Istanbul witnessed massive protests in Taksim Square. The founders and users of Twitter could read about the protests on Twitter but couldn’t see them. Since then, the founders set their sights on live streaming tools and features.

In 2015, they acquired Periscope. Periscope can be accessed on iOS and Android platforms. And yes, broadcasters are entitled to make their live videos available to all or to a few viewers. Truth be told, Periscope is best for content marketing.

You can inform your audiences about your upcoming or scheduled live streaming events by just tweeting from your account. There’s a problem though. Technical glitches often surface on Periscope and hence, video would pause for a while. First time users may not like this live streaming tool.

YouTube Live

 Not so long ago, the core functionality of YouTube was limited to watching pre-recorded and uploaded videos. Today, it’s a different scenario. YouTube Live lets you stream live content. This live video streaming tool is probably the best for on-the-ground reporting as it provides great control over live-video coverage.

One of the biggest positives is that it can be monetized easily. You can acquire sponsors and get yourself a few advertisers. This can be a negative aspect though. YouTube controls different types of ads- display ads, pre-roll, mid-roll etc. Users have no control over the ads. This is a huge turn off looking for uninterrupted live streaming videos.

Now, all the aforementioned live streaming tools are undeniably great. But let’ consider this fact – Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are the most blocked websites in schools, universities, businesses etc. And these tools come with huge restrictions on monetization opportunities, sponsorship prospects etc. Facebook Live doesn’t have great analytics. When it comes to Digital Rights Management (DRM), YouTube, Twitter and Facebook hardly have any significant leverage. This is where live streaming software come into picture. Let’s take a look at them.

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Open Broadcast Software (OBS)

 OBS is incredibly popular among gamers. This video streaming software is free and open source. This essentially means code lovers can write lines of code and alter the programs according to their discretion.

Here’s a good news for Linux users- They can use OBS on Linux. And yes, it runs seamlessly on Windows 7, 8 and 10. Mac lovers- don’t worry. It works perfectly on Mac OSX 10.8 and advanced versions. All this necessarily means that OBS is simply top-notch when it comes to software flexibility.

But there’s a huge downside- There is limited technical support. As a matter of fact, there’s no formal technical support. For beginners, it can be pretty much overwhelming! More often than not, people post their doubts and concerns on community forum. It may take days to get assistance.

StreamNow

Unlike OBS, StreamNow comes with a formal technical support. For broadcasters, this live video streaming software offers a bundle of monetization features. You can run subscription based offers or charge your audience per video basis. You can collect payments from PayPal gateway which is built-into this platform.

StreamNow’s peer to peer commenting system resembles that of Facebook Live in many ways. And yes, users can follow broadcasters to receive notifications on upcoming live video sessions. There is a dedicated dynamic admin panel that lets you change all the settings of your live videos. You can delete, flag, and modify videos. In addition, you can change its social configuration.

This video streaming software can be accessed on both iOS and Android platforms. Technical glitches are almost a rarity. Take a look at its features here.

Final Words

According to Statista, by 2021, the number of digital video viewers in the US is all set to surpass 230 million. Digital video advertising in 2019 stands at an estimated $14.38 billion in the US. More importantly, online video penetration is more or less universal in appeal. So, it’s important for upcoming vloggers to utilize live video streaming to the fullest.

It’s perfectly okay to invest in live video streaming software which has advanced features. It’s important to think about the huge returns. Prepare a live streaming strategy and draft a schedule. Be consistent in your efforts and learn from your mistakes. Watch your audiences’ reactions. Our best wishes are with you. Cheers!   

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