If simple appeals to you - perhaps your team is small, or you’d like to build your confidence and skills before moving into something more involved– here are our tips for taking a simple approach to livestreaming.
- Use one camera – this can be a phone or laptop streaming to a social media network or to Zoom. Read a set up guide here.
- Set the camera or phone close to the main speaker so that those watching can see clearly.
- Consider how you will capture the sound. There are microphones which plug directly into your laptop or phone. You may need to wear two mics - one for those in the building, and one for those watching online. We’ve found some good microphone recommendations here.
- You don’t need to livestream the whole service. In fact it may be more enjoyable for those watching online to watch just one shorter aspect such as the sermon.
- Speak directly to those onsite and online throughout the service – remembering to look at the camera when speaking to those participating online.
- If you are using props or demonstrations, describe as well as show. Those watching online may not see everything as clearly or you may be referencing something in the building not seen on camera. This will help both communities feel equally as part of the service.
- Delegate someone to be in charge of the camera or laptop to start and stop at the right place and make sure the stream and sound remain consistent.
- Prepare an order of service, or the readings and hymns, so that those watching online can participate. Upload it to your website and post the link to the webpage on social media so that it’s easy to find.
- Create a space for those watching online to have fellowship with on another, just like they would onsite. This could be a Facebook group, WhatsApp group or regular Zoom meeting.
- If recording, choose how you will distribute – it could be uploaded to your church social media page, YouTube channel or website. Tell your community where to watch it in your regular newsletter, WhatsApp groups and on your website. Overcommunication is better than under-communication! Learn how to premiere a recorded video here.
Example in practice
- Crofton Parish church set-up a Zoom meeting on a laptop which they position close to the speaker. Those watching at home can see and hear the speakers, and the speakers can directly speak to the community on Zoom. At points in the service the speaker unmutes the Zoom meeting so that they can chat directly.
- Bow church have been running 9.30am short service on Zoom each Sunday morning before the onsite service. A church leader hosts the service and those attending can participate, chat and pray with one another, just as they might have onsite.