Some choose to broadcast their content as a hobby but many choose to make a career out of live streaming. If you are considering doing the same then you will need to know how to record stream video. Naturally, if you are going to be broadcasting content then you will need the best streaming software to make sure things are as streamlined and efficient as possible.
Typically, the type of content being recorded and broadcast involves video games, though other types of content are live-streamed including learning and playing music, real-life streams, and other diverse creative content. If you are going to be recording video game content then you will need the best game recording software you can find.
Benefits of Recording Your Own Live Stream
While some live streaming platforms will immediately archive your streaming sessions and convert them to Video on Demand (VOD) format there are several benefits of learning how to record streaming video and keeping backups of your live streams. If you create copies of your streams for your own archives you are creating a safety net for your content and your business.
Learning how to record a live stream is an excellent opportunity to increase your stream’s revenue. Copies of your stream can be uploaded to other types of platforms which will provide another source of viewership and another place to see and support your content should something go wrong with your primary platform.
Recording your live stream sessions provides an opportunity for you to flex your editing muscles and strengthen your personal brand by enhancing your content post-stream. Having a copy of your streams affords you an opportunity to generate new kinds of content while also providing an additional way to engage with your viewership community.
Software Tools for Recording and Live Streaming
Streaming quality content requires more than just a good idea and the will to succeed. In order to broadcast your content to the world, you will need the right software to encode your video content and convert it to web-friendly data to be broadcast online. If you plan to keep recordings of your streams for further use you will need an online video recorder or streaming video recorder. Fortunately, streaming software is readily available and easy to acquire, many of them are even free!
The three most popular streaming programs are Open Broadcaster Software (OBS), Streamlabs OBS, and Lightstream. All three are completely free to use and available to download online except for Lightstream which is browser-based meaning it doesn’t require downloading at all.
OBS is an open-source software developed by streamers for streamers which means that it is full of features that are ideal for streaming, but it requires study and practice to use to its full potential and isn’t very user-friendly. Streamlabs OBS is a combination of Streamlabs streaming tools with OBS software and is very popular among gamers. Lightstream describes itself as “the Google Docs for live video production.”
How to Make a Live Stream
To start streaming you will need to determine a few things about your content as well as learn how to record stream video.
First, you need to decide what kind of content you would like to make. Figuring out what kind of content to make is wholly determined by your personal interests and skillset but it’s recommended that you base your streaming content on something you enjoy doing.
Second, you should consider who your target audience is. There are no wrong answers here but knowing what kind of audience you want to watch your content will help shape your content and in-turn help inform your choice on where to stream your content to.
Third, you have to pick a platform for your stream though this is usually made easy by knowing your content and audience. If you are a gamer then the most likely place for you to stream is probably Twitch or YouTube. If you already have a community built up then you might consider Facebook for its many ways to interact with your community. No matter which platform you choose it will be a simple matter to start streaming.
Step 1: Make sure your audio and video sources are connected to your encoder
Step 2: Configure your encoder
Step 3: Configure stream settings
Step 4: Connect your stream to your encoder
Step 5: Start your stream!
How to Make Money Streaming
If you are going to make a career out of live video streaming then you are going to need to know how to make money. Fortunately, streaming comes with many different revenue sources. Learning to take advantage of these revenue sources is essential to supporting your content if you are trying to make a career out of streaming.
1. Getting Donations or Tips From Fans
Streamers often receive donations from viewers that wish to support their content. Usually, these take the form of a one-time payment to the streamer through the platform as a show of support for their content. This option is offered by most streaming platforms and is a well-established part of the streaming culture.
2. Regular Viewer Payments for Subscribers on the Streaming Platform
Some platforms provide a way for viewers to help support your content by signing up to pay you a certain amount on a regular basis, usually monthly. Not all streaming platforms offer this as an option but it is very popular and those that don’t will likely start adopting it soon.
3. Tips and Regular Payments via Third-Party Platforms
If you are looking for redundancy in your business plan or perhaps independence from your platform of choice you can set up third-party systems for donations and regular payments. Services like Patreon, GoFundMe, and Kickstarter are excellent options for allowing your viewers to help support your continued content creation or provide you an opportunity to enrich your content going forward.
4. Revenue From Ads
With certain platforms, you can earn ad revenue by playing advertisements during your stream. Unfortunately, advertisements are risky. Few viewers like to see their entertainment interrupted by advertisements and there are third-party programs out there that will block them from seeing ads all together which will lose you a source of revenue.
5. Brand Deals and Sponsorships
If you have a sufficiently large community of regular viewers organizations and companies might reach out to you and offer to support your content in exchange for you promoting their goods or services. Some companies might sponsor your whole stream or pay you to use their good or service and review it for your viewers.
6. Affiliate Sales
Some companies will offer you a link or code that your viewers can use when they purchase goods from that company and when your viewers do purchase goods from that company using your affiliate code or link you will receive a commission for directing them there.
7. Create and Sell Your Own Merch
Merchandise is a well-known source of revenue for many businesses and streaming is no different. You can choose to create and sell your own merchandise or some platforms offer to do it for you in exchange for a cut of the profits.