Live Streaming Events: Is it worth it?

Recently I have dealt a lot with live streaming events on the web and I’ve made a few observations that may be helpful if you are an event planner who intends to stream a live event.

Who is your audience?

At Beltway Park we stream many events and this is a question we find ourselves asking all the time. Many times event leaders have come to the technical department wanting to stream things just because it’s the “cool” thing to do currently. It is important to know who your audience will be or if an online audience even exists for this content.

Are you promoting the stream?

If you do have an audience in mind the next question is, “how are you promoting the stream?” We can setup a streaming event with all of the latest and greatest technology in place, but if the fact that we are streaming is never announced in person, on social media, or in other event communications you won’t have an audience even if you have found that there is indeed a need for the stream.

What resources are you willing to devote to the stream?

I’ve seen it happen so many times from people who jump into streaming, they get a free Livestream account and setup a webcam at the back of the room just so they can say that we are “hip enough to stream events.” If no one has already, let me be the first to tell you, no one wants to watch your SD webcam at the back of the room for hours on end feeling like they are seeing a security camera feed. To do streaming right you need to be able to devote time, money, and people to have a compelling story being told by the stream. Most times this is the biggest deciding factor of whether or not streaming is a good idea.

So next time you plan your event and want to stream it ask these three questions to decide if it is necessary. As the old adage goes, “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.”


3 thoughts on “Live Streaming Events: Is it worth it?

  1. xyattxorgan says:

    Good points! I have a buddy that blows glass (he makes ornaments, trinkets, and what not) and I love when he puts up a live stream from his GoPro of him at work on his glass products. I think he uses it as means to show his friends how it works. I saw the link posted on his Facebook, so obviously he is catering to his friends who may be interested in learning the components of glassworks and glassblowing.


  2. Brance,
    You hit it right on the spot. Live streaming can be very useful and beneficial to an organization or an individual. But if used improperly, little benefit can come of it. I do some (very little, but some) of the live streams for ACU. I live streamed all of the Summit sessions in moody. For us it was crucial to live stream because summit is a huge event that hundreds of people attend. For those who can’t attend, the live stream allows them to be a part of the awesome Summit experience!


  3. Tommy says:

    Awesome post. I think Live Stream is quickly becoming a buzzword to make something seem more desirable to draw more of an audience to the actual event, but, nevertheless, it has an important place.


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