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I’ve been working in streaming technology for years now – with various live production and podcasting teams that have put on events of all shapes and sizes. The large scale events that some sophisticated and seasoned production teams put on are rather complicated of course, but the individual and small-scale events can be really easy – especially with tools like Qumu Cloud. Hopefully I can encourage you to get into it.

Here are 6 tips to get you going:

1. Live is awesome. Do it in real-time if you can, because catching things in the moment and capturing people for the duration of your event creates great experiences. You might be inclined to pre-record and then edit your videos, which I think is a fine start – but I can’t stress enough the power of real-time broadcasts. There’s nothing quite like the immediate feedback and audience engagement of true live events.

2. Check out Qumu Cloud for your streaming needs. You probably already have all the equipment you need to get started. Your built-in laptop camera can work, as well as pretty much any external webcam. If you’ve ever done a Skype video call, you’re on the right track. Of course if you want to produce Sportscenter-level content, you might need to get a better camera, but if not, you could be streaming live within 10 minutes. Qumu Cloud can support your small webcam streams and also scale up when you’re ready for Hollywood – it also runs entirely from the browser which is convenient.

3. Get some friends, a co-host or at least some temporary guests. You might be type who could never possibly run out of words to yell into the camera, but assuming you’re not already a wordsmith – you’ll want other people to talk to, or at least to help you moderate audience feedback while you present your content.

4. If you want to get fancy and incorporate outside video/images/etc. into your podcast, check out other streaming programs like Wirecast or use Qumu’s Capture Studio. Qumu Cloud works with both and you don’t need to change much to incorporate them.

5. Following a few simple streaming best-practices can be the difference between total failure and great success. Make sure you have a good internet connection; usually about 2-3 megs (or more) of upload speed is required for HD quality, and 1-2 for SD. Use a hardline, wired connection and avoid wi-fi if you can. Do a few practice runs to work out any kinks and don’t be afraid to go live early and often.

6. You can capture audience details if you’d like. Use Qumu Cloud’s registration feature to see who joined and how to follow up with them and embed your player on multiple sites where you can get a diverse audience.

It’s really easier than you might think to start live streaming. If you have an internet connection, a webcam and Qumu Cloud – you’re ready. Just think of all the presentations and discussions you’re already having with fellow employees and customers. Put it in front of a webcam and you’ve already got a live event!

Check out my 4 minute how-to on Live Streaming within Qumu Cloud: