Prepare content for a Live Stream

A livestream doesn’t have to be all live production in real-time. Sometimes content needs to be pre-recorded. This page will help provide guidelines to those responsible for sharing content like images, audio, and video.

Video format

All videos should be submitted in horizontal layout instead of vertical.

The main reason for making horizontal videos is the horizontal alignment of our eyes; we spend our lives on a horizontal plane. Therefore, movies and TV are horizontal.

The horizontal format is far superior to vertical when showing most things in daily life. For instance, scenes that have more than one person involved, or those that include dynamics and motion, are never vertical. They also can’t be as effective as they are in a horizontal video.

Rotating the iPhone to a Horizontal Position Will Record Video As Intended in Wide-Screen Format

Record your videos in 1080p HD

You can use your iPhone or iPad to record video in high-quality formats — from 720p HD at 30 fps, all the way up to 4K at 60 fps, depending on the model of your device. For streaming, we prefer to receive the videos in 1080p 30 fps. Click on the arrows on the image on the left to see how to change the options.

Use the Settings app to select a video format and frame rate:

  1. Open the iPhone Settings app.
  2. Tap Camera, then tap Record Video.
  3. Select from the list of video formats and frame rates that your iPhone or iPad supports.

Tips for better streaming video

Frame yourself

How you “frame” yourself on camera has a powerful subconscious impact on your audience, so it is worth knowing some of the basics.  In terms of online video presentations, framing has exactly the same meaning as a picture frame on the wall, i.e. it is the rectangular border that frames the image inside it.

Headroom is the amount of space between the top of your head and the top of the frame. Ideally, you don’t want to cut the top of your head off.  The exception is if you are filming an extreme close-up shot or full close-up (where cropping is unavoidable).  If so, then crop the frame at the top of the forehead; keeping all of your face (the expressive features) fully in the frame – as well as your neck.  Do not cut your chin off and leave enough room for graphics for your name and title (also called Lower Thirds).

Another common mistake is to show far too much headroom, which wastes frame space and can be distracting.

Consider a phone tripod

Consider the lighting

When it comes to any kind of video project, lighting is extremely important because it’s going to not only help your viewers see and understand the subject, but also set a certain mood or ambiance. If you’re shooting footage outside, you can definitely take advantage of the natural light but be aware of which times of the day are best for certain types of shots. Most people avoid shooting outside at noon when the sun is at its highest point, creating unwanted shadows and a washed-out look.

Light yourself from the front!

Test submitted music for copyright

YouTube and Facebook have algorithms that can instantly recognize copyrighted music and can shut down your stream during a broadcast. Even after the broadcast is over, it may be analyzed and your video could be deleted or audio muted for copyright infringement.  Every video uploaded to YouTube and Facebook is scanned against the Content ID database to detect if it contains any copyrighted music or video. Just upload a video with the song in question and see if it is flagged.

Facebook MusicYouTube Music

Keep the slideshows short

The larger your audience is, the shorter your slideshow should be. Don’t expect people to keep their attention for a very long time. Keep the video short and sweet!

For social media and live streams, keep it at a minimum and ideally below 3 minutes. Exceeding 15-20 minutes, your slideshow will be more like a documentary, so if you need to show a longer video, try to brainstorm ways of dividing it up into episodes or chapters. Perhaps you could show it in different intervals?

Consider the age group and profile of your audience too – for example, if you have older people in the audience who might appreciate viewing photos a little bit longer, decide on the pace of your slideshow accordingly.

The aim is to find the ideal length – as well as content – where your audience can make it to the end of your slideshow with interest and the emotions you want to convey.

Get good clear audio

It’s easy to take and edit quick videos on the iPhone, but getting great audio isn’t always as simple as pointing and shooting. The microphone on newer iPhone models isn’t too shabby at close distances. But when you’re trying to film in a crowded room, or the great outdoors, it’s not quite enough. Here are some tips to avoid sub-par sound when shooting iPhone video, starting with great equipment like the RØDE Microphones VideoMic Me-L Microphone. If you lost your lightning adaptor, you may need this.

In addition, pay attention to the environment where you’re recording. A careful setup might be able to reduce interfering sounds like wind noise or jabbering people in the background. You won’t always have time to fix up the area where you plan to record, but if you do, try to improve the acoustics by amplifying the sounds you want to capture and dampening those that you don’t.

Even something as simple as getting closer to your subject can make your audio sound much better than it would at a distance. If you frame yourself similar to the CNN example above, you should get good audio. Be sure to avoid recording yourself in a room that has a lot of echo. Rooms with rugs help.

External Microphone

Practice, Practice, Practice!

Even famous actors or news anchors rehearse their roles. There’s a lot of moving parts in a live stream, and it’s best to work out most of the kinks so that everyone is prepared and knows what to expect. As a technical director, I’m providing guidance to the the attendees.

Keep in mind that technology does not always go as planned. The Internet can be spotty for any of the participants. I’ve been on corporate webcasts for Fortune 100 companies and even the CEO’s video was choppy or the audio was out of sync for another executive! Sometimes we are at the whim of the Internet Service Providers (ISPs). To ensure your participants have the best audio and video, have them review these tips.


Tips for better streaming video

Here are some additional tips to check out

With some thought and preparation, your livestream can look very professional!

Tips for better streaming videoLook your Best