MNB Blog

Facebook Live - Best Practices

Posted by
Dominique

Facebook Live - Best Practices

By Music•Musique NB

There are new techniques and tips being developped and tested everyday on how to increase the quality of your Facebook Live broadcasts. With that in mind, we tried to bring some of that basic knowledge together here. We hope this helps!

There are a few different options and combinations possible to stream a live show:

1. RECORDING WITH YOUR PHONE OR TABLET

Internet Connection

a. Optimize your Wifi connection by turning off all devices that are using internet connection. You want all the bandwidth to go towards your live stream. You should also place your phone as close as possible to the router.

b. If you have access to 5G, use it! Tip for 5G: you will need to be as close as possible to the router. 

Placement

To assure good quality of sound:    

a. Choose a room with no echo (closet, room with carpets, etc.). *If you do not have such a room, strategically place some blankets to cut the echo!

b. Stay close to your phone to avoid picking up the room’s noises & echoes. 

To assure good visual quality:

a. Make sure you have plenty of lighting in the room. *Avoid pointing the camera towards a window. The backlight will work against the subject (you!). It’s better to face a window. 

b. Filming horizontally (landscape mode) is the best way to capture a live stream performance. 

c. It is preferable to use the camera on the back of your phone as it is usually of better quality than your “selfie” camera. *If you want to see your audience’s comments during your live, use another device, like a tablet or computer, to check them out!

 

2. RECORDING WITH YOUR COMPUTER + WEBCAM

Internet Connection

a. If possible, connect your computer directly to your router with an ethernet cable to have the fastest internet connexion possible. 

b. If “option A” is not possible, turn off all other devices that could be using internet connexion AND place your computer as close as possible to your router. Limiting internet use by other devices is still a good idea (see point 1a.

Placement

To assure good quality of sound:    

a. Choose a room with no echo (closet, room with carpets, etc.). *If you do not have such a room, strategically place some blankets to cut the echo!

b. Stay close to your computer to avoid picking up the room’s noises & echoes. 

To assure good visual quality:

a. Make sure you have plenty of lighting in the room. *Avoid pointing the “camera” towards a window- it worsens the quality of the video because the light is working against the camera. It’s better to face a window. 

 

3. RECORDING WITH MICROPHONES & AUDIO INTERFACES

a. If you are familiar with using an audio interface for inputting microphones and instruments it is possible (and preferable) to do so especially for a microphone input.  A large capsule mic closer to the source will ultimately give a better sound than the integrated mic in a laptop or smartphone.

b. Don’t over do it: one microphone should be enough if you are performing solo or duo.

 

4. USEFUL TIPS

a. Plug your phone, tablet or computer during your live broadcast to make sure it has plenty of charge to get through the show. 

b. If you have a tripod for your phone or tablet, use it!

c. Phones & Tablets: Make sure your Facebook App is updated!

d. Computers: while setting up your live stream on Facebook, make sure to select the camera that you are going to use in “Camera Settings”. 

e. Experiment with the sound and visuals before. Do many offline tests to check the quality and consistency of your audio. If you are too loud and the sound is distorting, maybe you are too close to the recording device. 

 

Setting up - Research and TEST TEST TEST:

1. Do your research on how to optimize your live broadcast quality with the equipment you have on hand! 

2. Make sure you have the latest version of Facebook. *This explanation is based on the new version of Facebook. Note: Safari may not let you use the new Facebook just yet!

3. Practice & sound check before going live. In your Artist Page:

a. Click on “Go Live”

b. Click on “Broadcast as test”

c. Start a live broadcast (test) and see how it sounds & looks. *Only administrators of your page will be able to see your test broadcast. It will remain on your page as a reference until you delete it manually. 

4. This is a perfect time to troubleshoot. Sound is not working? No problem, Google it! Ask for help!

5. If you can, set the quality to 720p. No need for more and it will take up more bandwidth & reduce overall quality.

 

BEFORE THE LIVE:

1. Prepare your setlist like it’s a regular live show.

2. Try your best to create an ambiance and esthetic that reflects you as an artist.

3. Write a click worthy title and description for your live broadcast when you set up before going live. 

4. Announce, promote, share! Let people know about your upcoming show!

 

DURING THE LIVE:

Audience engagement:

1. Take the time to respond to a few live comments during your video. This is a good way to connect with your audience and make everyone feel like we are all together for a social event!

2. Mention the commenters by names when you engage with them!

3. Don’t forget this is for all audiences. Be mindful of what you say! 

4. Take this opportunity to plug your new album, social media pages, or anything else related to your project(s) during your live video! Don’t over do it, if you say it twice during your live, that’s plenty!

5. THANK EVERYONE! If you were given any funding to play this live performance, don’t forget to thank the funder! (Ex: Province of NB & Music NB). Thank your audience for attending your show.

 

AFTER THE LIVE: 

1. You have the option to post the live video permanently… it’s definitely recommended to do so in order to give everyone a chance to enjoy your content! 

2. Once you post it, it is a good idea to choose a good thumbnail for your video. Something that will catch the eye, not the part where you get up to turn the camera off! 

 

Tutorials

We asked our friend Chris Colepaugh to provide some wisdom on how you can make your Facebook Live performances better with some simple tips and techniques.
 

We also asked Ben Morier to provide some insight regarding his recent experience with Facebook Live. This one is in french only, but Youtube does a decent job translating. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact(@)musicnb.org