The Ultimate Guide to Interactive Live Streaming in 2022

By Emily KringsJun 8, 2022

Live streaming is one of the most engaging types of online media. When it’s done right, interactive live streaming can be a very powerful tool for building an online community to draw awareness to your brand, make money, and more.

In this post, we are going to discuss all things interactive live streaming. We’ll start by discussing what interactive live streaming is and why a creator might use it before we dive into some actionable tips for hosting a successful interactive stream.

To wrap things up, we will discuss interactive live streaming on Maestro.

Table of Contents

  • What is Interactive Live Streaming?
  • Why Use Interactive Live Streaming?
  • 5 Tips for Live Stream Audience Interaction
  • How to Choose an Interactive Live Streaming Platform
  • Interactive Streaming on Maestro

What is Interactive Live Streaming?

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Interactive live streaming is a stream that involves the active participation of viewers in one way or another. This sort of live stream facilitates interactions with the audience that are generally more intimate than the standard live stream. Interactive live streams also give viewers a voice.

Live streams can be made interactive with a live chat, clickable overlays and panels, and more. More advanced streaming setups may even support on-video participation from members of the audience.

Why Use Interactive Live Streaming?

Interactive live streaming is a great resource for brands and creators because it stimulates engagement and facilitates more intimate interactions between the streamer and their viewers.

Engagement is important because it helps creators to connect with their audiences, build a community, and develop influence within their industry. 

By building an online community, brands and creators build a foundation for a variety of revenue-generating streams. For example, when you have loyal fans, you can sell access to your virtual events, or you can sell merch. If your viewership is high, you can monetize with sponsorship and ads.

Plus, your influence can be leveraged in other ways. For example, if you’re running a small business, you can use your influence as a springboard to expand that endeavor.

5 Tips for Live Stream Audience Interaction

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There are many ways to make your live streams interactive, but it is important to create a strategy that aligns with your brand and resonates with your audience.

Here are a few tips and ideas that creators can use to encourage and improve live stream audience interaction.

1. Be Genuine

The first key to success with interactive live streaming is to be genuine. If you’re not genuine, it will be difficult to connect with your audience, and they will not be incentivized to participate.

Although part of content creating is curating a show that resonates with an audience, be sure to only create media that resonates with you. There’s no use in acting like someone you’re not because your viewers will likely pick up on the inconsistencies over time.

2. Ask Questions

Another key to success in interactive live streaming is to treat the stream like a two-way conversation. The stream should feel like a conversation with your audience rather than a monologue on your part.

Encourage viewers to respond in the chat to spark conversations amongst your fans. Another option is to submit video responses to share in future streams. Chat is a great option for widespread audience involvement, and video features are a great option for showing special attention to a handful of fans.

3. Host Giveaways

Giveaways are a great way to incentivize participation in your streams to make them interactive. One way to do this could be to ask for video submissions before the stream and give prizes away for the best submissions.

For example, a musician might ask for fans to submit open verses or remixes of a song to be featured on the stream. The creator might offer a cash prize for the top three submissions.

You can get creative with your giveaways if you want them to double as a lead magnet or as a method to gain followers on a specific social media platform. It’s a win-win.

4. Run Polls

Polls are another fun way to encourage participation in your streams. With polls, viewers can voice their opinions with the click of a button.

One way to use polls would be to ask a question about a highly debated preference, such as whether or not pineapple belongs on pizza. This is fun and lighthearted, and it will surely get people talking in the chat, as well. Of course, this can be adjusted to apply to any topic or industry.

Much like polls, multiple-choice trivia questions are another option to keep viewers engaged. The type of interaction is a little different, but it still keeps viewers involved.

5. Make it Competitive

Many people are competitive by nature, so tapping into that desire to win is an exciting way to make your streams interactive. When you use an interactive live streaming platform that offers gamification functionality and leaderboard features, viewers can compete to get to the top. 

Setup your leaderboards to reward people who participate in your streams on a regular basis, or use another metric that encourages regular support. Also, by giving those on the leaderboard a title such as “super fans” or “top supporters,” you provide further validation that they are valued members of your community.

How to Choose an Interactive Live Streaming Platform

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An interactive live streaming platform is an essential tool for hosting interactive streams. What makes an interactive live streaming platform different from any old online video platform is that it has special features that allow viewers to participate in the stream.

With that said, let’s run through the steps on how to choose an interactive live streaming platform for your streaming needs.

1. Identify Your Ideal Features

Every live streaming setup requires different features since every creator has unique goals. That’s why it’s important to figure out what’s important for you.

Some common interactive streaming features to look for include:

  • Live chat or commenting
  • Clickable overlays (polls, quizzes, etc.)
  • Interactive panels
  • Collaborative live streaming

Depending on the scale and purpose of your interactive live streams, some other valuable features include white-label streaming, video monetization, and brand customization.

2. Determine a Budget

Next, figure out what sort of budget you’re working with. How much are you willing and able to spend to host your streams?

If you have a decent amount of money to spend, but you don’t know how to create a reasonable budget for your specific needs, do not fret. You can figure this out by starting with your expected returns from the stream.

If you believe that you can get 100 viewers to spend $5 each on your monthly streams, you’d break even with a $500 monthly budget. Work backward from that to calculate how much you need to spend on your video hosting platform and other elements of your live streaming setup.

3. Compare Options

Now, it’s time to shop around to see what sort of interactive live streaming platforms are on the market. A few popular interactive streaming platforms include:

  • Maestro
  • Restream
  • Uscreen
  • Panopto
  • YouNow

Many other live streaming platforms can be made interactive with the support of integrations or custom development.

4. Take Advantage of Free Trials

A lot of interactive live streaming platforms offer free trials or free plans that allow creators to get familiar with a platform’s features and functionality. 

As you use the free trials, set up test streams to see what your interactive stream could look like. Explore the user dashboards of each platform to see how easy they are to use.

5. Choose a Platform

Once you have considered all of your options and taken advantage of free trials, it is time to choose an interactive video platform for your streaming needs.

As you start getting your account set up with your chosen platform, be sure to review all documentation and onboarding resources offered by the provider. This will help you get started quickly and give you the knowledge you need to take care of all of the platform’s features.

Interactive Streaming on Maestro

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Looking for the perfect platform to host your interactive live streams? Maestro could be the solution for you.

Our platform offers a plethora of powerful interactive streaming tools, including:

  • Live chat
  • Customizable panels and overlays
  • Polls and multiple-choice questions
  • Gamification and leaderboards
  • Studio (Beta) for collaborative streaming 

Plus, Maestro enables creators to customize every element of the stream to ensure that everything is on-brand. Another perk is that our platform is equipped with a variety of monetization features, so creators can make more money with their interactive streams.

Sign up for Maestro today to better connect with your community and encourage more live stream audience interaction.

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