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January 4, 2023

9 tips for hosting better live content

Ryan Hayward
Co-founder, Storytail

We’ve been building live content for over 4 years. We’ve led virtual conferences with 5,000 attendees to 1-on-1 sales calls. Fair to say we’ve gone through the hard yards on figuring out the best methods for hosting incredible live content. In this article, I share my 10 best tips for building better live content.

1. Content is king. Screen shares as boring.

How you deliver your content is just as important as the content itself. Your live content should be a unique experience. Your audience is sick of listening to presentations, they want something that offers more connection. Consider different ways you can present your content rather than just another screenshare. Could you make it interactive? Could you involve an activity?Could it be a game? The possibilities are endless.

2. If it could just be a YouTube video, it should be.

This can often be a tough one to swallow. But why should someone turn up to your live content in real-time? Why couldn’t they just watch the video replay? If you’re not sure, you need to reconsider how you’re running your content experiences. We’re constantly moving towards a more on-demand world. Take Netflix, Youtube & TikTok for example: these platforms have a goal of giving you content, when you want it.

Live content should offer a FOMO experience. An experience that if you don’t attend at a certain time, you can’t have it. Often this is a tailored and personalised experience that on-demand content just can not provide.

3. Audio is more important than video.

We can put up with a pixelated webcam, but we can’t deal with crappy audio. If you can, invest in a dedicated microphone for your live content setup. This will make the world of difference to your content experience. Your attendees headphones will appreciate it too!

4. Test your tech beforehand.

Technical difficulties when you’re presenting can be nerve-racking. It can ruin the attendee experience. Before every session, spend 5 minutes testing your video, audio, screensharing capabilities & other tech so we know that there won’t be any hiccups on the day.

5. Break the screen.

The world is sick of consuming. Your audience craves deeper connection. Give it to them. Where possible, consider delivering your content differently and get your audience engaging with the content you’re presenting. Instead of just sharing your screen, aim to create create two way conversations.

As mentioned earlier, if your live content could just be a YouTube video, it should be. Give a reason for someone to attend your session in real-time. Give them an experience that they can become a part of.

6. Sweatpants are for zoomers. (turn up your production)

tldr; make your video look good! This doesn’t mean you have to suit up. Simply, position yourself in front of a window for good lighting, make sure you’re centered in the frame. Make yourself look considered on video.

7. Speak like a human.

Do you want to fall asleep when someone presents like they’re a robot? Me too! Present like you’re talking to someone in the room. Speak with fluency, energy & personality. Your role as a presenter is to keep the attention of your audience - you can’t do this by speaking like a robot.

8. Look into the webcam.

Simply looking directly into your webcam instead of your screen makes a huge difference to your attendees experience. They’ll feel more connected to you, just like you’re speaking directly to them. It’ll feel awkward to look at a little camera at first, but your content experience will greatly benefit.

9. Host on Storytail

Bias aside, Storytail is fantastic for building & hosting stress-free live content that feels personalised to you.

You can start creating for free here.

Ryan Hayward
Co-founder, Storytail
Become the experience your audience craves.

Communicate, tell stories and present your way. Storytail allows you to host in an environment that you control.