Why start a gaming live stream?
Live streaming is an interactive platform that lets you engage with your audience and increase your presence on YouTube.
Go beyond the game with live streaming
Live streaming on YouTube lets gamers go live anytime, anywhere, even on mobile. You can instantly offer your audience a fresh, unedited perspective. Live streams might eliminate your time spent in post-production (although it’s easy to create a highlight reel) while sharing unique and, sometimes unexpected, moments. Bonus: The built-in chat tool lets fans message you for immediate, two-way conversation.
- YouTube channels that live stream on a weekly basis have seen up to a 40% increase in subscribers and up to 70% increase in watch time.
- The average watch time for a live stream is three times more than the average watch time for a 'traditionally'-produced video-on-demand (VOD).
- Live streams increase interaction with your viewers because you're there in real-time with them.
- Be the first to get the word out! Stream now lets you broadcast with the touch of a button.
Take a look at these easy steps for how to launch a live stream. Always remember to TEST your live stream when setting it up – go live and see how it looks! For long streams, consider archiving the video on your channel or edit the highlights for viewers to watch later on.
See it in action
League of Legends Live eSportsLeague of Legends posts full matches live and as VOD during their biggest competitions. This has been a great way to bring in viewers for eSports leagues and gaming publishers. (Video in English)
Live unboxing exampleTournament coverage and Let’s Plays aren’t the only events that gamers can live-stream. Channels like Rev3Gaming have found success live-streaming unboxings, reviews and other gameplay live events. (Video in English)
Ways to go live
You can go live anywhere at any time from your mobile device, or you can host a live stream from your computer. Here are the most common options:
- Stream now (Desktop) offers a repeatable format for live streams with a one-time setup and an unchanging URL – just add '/live' to the end of your channel URL to easily share.
- Mobile is a quick and easy method to stream anywhere with your mobile device. Consider this option if you want to share spur of the moment, must-see moments with your audience.
For specific strategies around live streaming on YouTube, take a look at our course.
Some formats to try out
Experimenting with different live streaming formats is one way to find what works (and what doesn’t) for your audience and channel. Here are a few formats that we’ve seen gamers on YouTube use:
- Let’s Plays: Playing games live is a great way to diversify content and interact with your audience. Sometimes, gamers will even open servers up so that their audience can play along!
- Launches and Events: Gaming creators and publishers have used live streaming to host launches, throw fundraisers and even show fans a behind-the-scenes view of events.
- E-sports: Global E-sports events have been successful at bringing sports fans together from around the world to watch a shared online sporting event.
- 'Ask me anything' (AMA): What better way to have your audience pose questions to you than in real time? AMA is a newer format among gaming creators that boosts audience engagement.
- 'Reaction' videos: Your live reaction to new games, strategies, publisher announcements and even unboxing moments can be an effective use of live streaming.
- Promotion: Have a new project or collab to announce? Live streaming is a fast, authentic avenue for marketing your new venture.
- Celebratory: Live streaming is an excellent way to show appreciation for your fans and share the excitement when you’ve hit major milestones.
Keep these tactics in mind before you stream:
- Plan: Even though live streaming is improvisational, it’s a good idea to plan out what you might cover so that your audience isn’t left hanging or bored.
- Practice: Find your live stream “voice”. Practise beforehand what you might say and do before you go live.
- Package: Planning out your stream’s title, thumbnail and description beforehand can help your stream be discovered and entice viewers to click.
- Promote: Take a look at the YouTube Help Centre’s resource for promoting before, during and after your live event. Subscribers that ring the bell will get a notification when you go live.
- Schedule: If you have a packed programming calendar, consider using live streams instead of uploads to offload some of the editing and post-production time.
Consider trying out a live stream the next time you are inspired for a more spur of the moment video. Then, check YouTube Analytics to see how your fans reacted.
Try out live streaming today!null