Facebook Live was launched in 2016 in order to make live video streaming possible on Facebook. Users are able to stream videos from their mobile devices or PCs straight to a selected audience. It has become a popular tool used by people from many countries across the world.
There are various opportunities that have been discovered as a result of Facebook live video streaming. FB Live is a big platform in the video streaming industry with hobbyists, publishers, influencers, media companies, celebrities, and others utilizing the service for various purposes. Businesses can check tutorial videos to see how going live on Facebook can help them in promotions and making sales.
Let’s Take a Look at Some Stats on Facebook Live
- According to Vimeo, as of 2018, nearly 80% of online audiences were viewing broadcasts through FB Live.
- It has been predicted that the video streaming industry will be worth over $70 billion by 2021.
- Do you know that the keyword “Facebook live stream” saw an increase of over 300% in search engine hits between 2016 and 2018? This shows how fast FB Live was gaining popularity within the first two years from its inception.
- The number of Facebook Live video streams surpassed the 2 billion mark in 2019.
Here, you will learn how to use Facebook Live in simple steps. This is a combined guide for going live on Facebook from your mobile device and laptop, so rest assured that you will learn everything that is important here. By the time you are done reading, you will be able to get the most out of using FB Live!
Table of Contents
How to Use Facebook Live on Mobile
Ensure that you read each of the steps on how to go live on Facebook (using your mobile device). The list below will help you navigate the steps better:
- Look for the live video icon
- Grant access to your camera and microphone
- Switch to “live”
- Check your posting and privacy options
- Write a catchy description
- Tag people, select a location, and add activity
- Set camera orientation
- Add special effects to enhance the video experience
- Start the broadcast
- Interact with your audience
- End the broadcast and save the video
1. Look for the Live Icon
When you open the Facebook mobile app, go to News Feed. There, you will notice a “Live” icon under “What’s on your mind”. Tapping it will open the live video feature, but you will have to grant the platform access to the camera and microphone of your device before you can go further.
You can also try another way: going live on Facebook from your profile page. How does Facebook Live work through that route? Start by opening your profile page. It will be displayed in a similar way as it is on the News Feed.
2. Grant Access to Your Camera and Microphone
You may receive a prompt asking for permission to access your device’s camera. This will happen if you have not given such permission in the past. It will not pop up again after the first time you grant access.
The next permission to be granted would be the use of your phone’s camera content. This will enable you to choose between using your front-facing camera and your rear-facing camera.
3. Switch to “Live”
This is the next step after granting the platform permission to utilize your camera and microphone. By now, you are about to start streaming. However, keep in mind that the default settings of your Facebook camera is on non-live photo shooting.
To switch to FB Live, check your screen for the large blue “Start Live Video” tab close to the center. Tap it. Rest assured that it will not start a Facebook Live video immediately. The screenshot below will be used as a reference to explain other steps.
4. Check Your Posting and Privacy Options
Your privacy settings will be on “Friends” by default. You can change it as well as the “Post” option by tapping on where you can see them—at the top of the screen. The “Only me” option simply means that the broadcast is visible to only you. “Post” means that the video will be posted as a regular Facebook post.
The “Only me” option is good for testing how to Facebook Live, especially if you are using the feature for the first time. It can help you in rehearsing and choosing better camera angles. The “Only Me” option can be found by tapping “See More” on the privacy menu. It will appear as the last bubble.
Do you know how to go live on Facebook as a business or an entrepreneur? Brands will most likely want to choose the “Public” option. As an individual, you may prefer a small audience. For example; hobbyists may leave the privacy settings at “Friends”, or they may opt for either “Specific friends” or “Friends except . . .”—anyone that works for them.
There are options to stream to users in other specific categories such as institutions or associations that you are a member of. You will find this feature just below the “Only me” bubble.
5. Write a Catchy Description
Descriptions may come in handy depending on the purpose of your video. Hobbyists may not need descriptions for their streams. You will find the “Tap to add a description” section above the blue tab. Your description will appear like a title above the video. They are also displayed on the News Feeds of your target audience.
Brands can get the attention of their audiences by drafting a compelling description that will be easy to understand at first glance. For example, you can simply use something like this: “We have some cool discounts for you at our Dubai branch. Watch this video to see how you can save as much as 50% on your jewelry purchases this holiday.”
6. Tag People, Select Location, and Add Activity
How awesome it is to be able to tag people to your broadcast just like any other Facebook post? Simply tag any viewer, set your location, and add activity by tapping the icons above the “Start Live Video” button.
7. Set Camera Orientation
Before you start the broadcast, you will need to know how to live stream on Facebook with the best camera orientation. Ensure that your camera is stationed for the best angle. Find out which camera option is the best. For example, test the front-facing camera and the rear-facing camera experience.
To select from the camera view option, check the upper right-hand corner of your screen. You will see a camera icon with two curved arrows near the flash icon that looks like lightning. Note that the videos will always be in a perfect “square view”, whether you hold the device horizontally or vertically.
8. Add Special Effects to Enhance Video Experience
Do you know that you can add more life to your broadcast? For example; adding features such as drawings, text, lenses, and filters to your video is possible. How does Facebook Live work with such special effects? Tap the magic wand icon beside the “Start Live Video” tab to start the process.
9. Start The Broadcast
You have to be mentally prepared to shoot before this. Take a deep breath, relax, and tap the button. The stream will be displayed on your News Feed, as well as the News Feeds of your audience.
The duration of the broadcast can be as long as 90 minutes, so businesses will definitely have enough time to make all the important points of their message clear. You can practice how to live stream on Facebook using optimal timing.
If you know how to do Facebook Live for longer periods, it will help you get more viewers. For example, users that are just coming online and have started scrolling through their News Feeds at the time of the broadcast can stumble upon the stream.
10. Interact with Your Audience
How does Facebook Live work with audience interaction? It works seamlessly! Such type of engagement is possible by, first, encouraging your viewers to do so. You can also state this as part of the video’s description.
Note that knowing how to stream on Facebook and interact with your viewers is a sure way to improve your ranking in the News Feeds of your target audience. There are various ways to do this. They are stated below:
- By speaking directly to the viewers
- By having someone else to help you in responding to comments from a computer near you. This is a suitable technique for businesses.
Comments will be visible on the bottom of the screen. They will be displayed chronologically and in reverse. The latest comments will be the last ones to appear. A viewer can be blocked by tapping their profile pictures (beside their comments) to see the “Block” option. You can also unblock viewers the same way.
11. End the Broadcast and Save the Video
You have known how to live stream on Facebook. Now, it is time to know to stop the stream. Note that the duration and the number of viewers will be shown on the top of your screen. You can end the broadcast by tapping “Finish”. It will still be displayed on your Timeline or Page like any other video post.
You should know how to save the video apart from knowing how to go live on Facebook. Once you tap “Finish”, a screen showing the “SAVE”, upload, post, delete, and share buttons will display. Note that you can always edit the video’s description and privacy settings later. You can also delete it just like any other post on your News Feed.
How to Use Facebook Live on Laptop
This is as easy as knowing how to do Facebook Live with your mobile device. If you are able to stream on the Facebook Live mobile version, it will be easier for you to adapt to desktop mode. It is a good option for brands that want to stream videos in a stationary position. For example, streaming meetings that involve the participants sitting in place throughout the event. The list below will guide you in reading the steps on how to use Facebook Live for laptop:
- Look for the live video option
- Draft a description
- Grant permission
- Set up your video orientation
- Start and stop streaming
1. Look for the Live Video Option
In desktop mode, go to your page and tap the “Write something” box. The drop-down menu will show some options. Tap “See All” for the “Start a Love Video” option to come on.
2. Draft a Description
This is the first thing that may come to your mind. The description should, of course, be catchy. It will be shown on your News Feed and the timeline of your Page.
3. Grant Permission
Let the site access your PC’s microphone and camera by granting it permission when the prompt pops up. The prompt will not show the next time you want to live stream.
4. Set up Your Video Orientation
Once, you have seen that the view is perfect for the broadcast, you can proceed to go live. Businesses can learn how to go live on Facebook for desktop with the use of external devices like video cameras. Tap “click here” at the right-hand side of your screen (just above the “Go Live” tab) to enable that feature.
5. Start and Stop Streaming
You should know how to go live on Facebook once your set up is in order. Yes, it is by clicking on the aforementioned “Go Live” tab. The countdown works the same way as it does in the mobile version.
The stream can be ended the same way you would stop it on your mobile device. Videos will be shown on your Page and in your News Feed after the broadcast. Their descriptions and dates can be edited by tapping the drop-down arrow on the upper right hand corner.
New posts can be created featuring the video. Pin the stream at the top of your page, so that it will be the first thing that visitors see when they check.
Whether you are learning how to Facebook live in order to make it a hobby or for commercial purposes, you should take each step explained here seriously. No knowledge is lost. Who knows? You may want to incorporate that hobby into your business venture someday. If you are an Instagram user, you may find the best time to go live useful.
Hopefully, this guide has been of great help to you. Now, you know how to Facebook live easily. Ensure that you browse once in a while for more tips on going live on Facebook. Just as the social network offers regular updates for its PC programs and mobile apps, there will be more tricks to learn in the future.