Streaming is easier than ever but there are still many pitfalls but, as I discussed in Part One, there are still some common mistakes with easy fixes that can help make your broadcast better.
Audio quality is, debatably, even more important than the quality of the visuals. You might have noticed this yourself, but most people will accept lower quality visuals a lot more than they will low quality audio when it comes to a live stream. Spending money wisely on the type of microphone that’s right for your content, something we discussed here, is important but little tweaks can make a cheaper sounding microphone sing! With XSplit Broadcaster 4.0 we have introduced Audio Effects DSP. What this means is you can go in, tweak the EQ to add the right amount of bass, treble or mids to your voice to make it sounds exactly the way you’d want it to. Want that Radio Broadcast voice? It’s doable! The best thing to do is play with these settings as everyone’s voice is different and you’ll find what sounds right as you need.
Want to stop blowing out your audio levels? Add an audio gate, a compressor, and more with XSplit Broadcaster 4.0’s Audio Effects DSP!
Got a fancy camera but it doesn’t seem to look as nice as some of the other streams you see? A lot of the time, getting your lighting right is key! Even a cheaper webcam can benefit greatly from getting your lighting setup right, something XSplit alumni Offcast discusses in this video.
Something as simple as removing a light source from behind you can make a huge difference in the quality of your camera on stream so be sure to set up your lighting right!
Play what you enjoy.
It might seem like a good idea to always play the games that have just come out or have shot up in popularity but if you’re not enjoying them it’s not going to benefit anyone. Firstly, a lot of the time there is more competition in new releases and popular games and with discoverability always being an issue on sites like Twitch it’s just going to be even worse. The most important parts though are the enjoyment of you and your audience, which are very much linked. If you’re playing a game you’re not that in to, I don’t know about you, but it doesn’t make very interesting streams from me! I tend to get bored, or worse fed up. This is normal unless you’re a great actor, pretty obvious to people watching you, and most of the time if people aren’t watching streamers for great gameplay they’re watching to hang out so setting yourself up to have a bad time is also setting your audience up to have a bad time.
Sure, looking into analytics and metrics to find out what the optimum games are can be helpful but ultimately why are you streaming in the first place? To have fun and connect with an audience! Playing the games you enjoy is going to bring out the best in you and the people who connect with you at your best are the people you want hanging around!
Don’t stream all the time.
“Getting on that grind” doesn’t work anymore. Really, that used to be the advice “stream for 7 or 8 hours, people will come and watch”, while there used to be some truth to that five or six years ago now more and more people are streaming while the discoverability tools haven’t got that much better. More than anything though, streaming for so long you end up exhausted is a terrible idea! Much like we discussed above, people mostly want to hang out and have fun so if you’re cranky, tired, and fed up because this is hour nine you’re unlikely to have many folks stick around. The most important take away though is if you’re not in the mood to perform and be “on” today, don’t. While that’s simple enough to say, and for some creators, this is their job and they have to work, for most of us streaming is a hobby. If your hobby is wearing you down, or if you’re just not in the mood today, don’t. Take time off, as much as you need, until you feel like you want to do it again.
Both you and your audience will have a better experience in the long run and ultimately that’s why a lot of us got into streaming in the first place.
Implementing some, or all, of this advice, should from a tech standpoint and a personal one make your streaming experience a little better for both you and your audience! Let me know in the comments what things you have noticed that might help your fellow streamers and content creators out!