Here are some Tips & Tricks For Producing & Managing Live Webcasts Without Failure
By Dan Rayburn
Prepare for input problems: Although everyone expects their video inputs to be available during their live stream, sometimes they are lost. Whether a laptop with slides loses power or the camera’s cable comes loose, it’s best to be ready for these problems-waiting-to-happen rather than be caught unprepared. The best approach is two pronged: have a branded, custom no signal image that automatically appears when signal is lost; and have secondary video layouts ready to switch to when a signal is lost.
Test and test again: For live events on location, get the most of your time before the show by making sure you test your gear offsite before the show and again on-site before the show. Start by creating configuration presets or changeable settings that let you test your expected inputs, create the layouts and add event branding before you go. If you have them, enter your CDN settings and test that everything works before you leave. Also create (or request from your client) pre and post show content that you can show in the stream before and after the event. For best results, use video with audio as your pre-show content.
Fail-safe networking solution: Network and CDN failures during a live stream are a real possibility. Depending on the hardware you have available, make use of mobile tethering, back up CDN stream or even multiple CDNs to make sure a disruption in networking doesn’t affect your ability to get your content to the cloud. For remote locations and high priority events that absolutely need to be broadcast live, consider primary or backup networking with cellular bonding solutions that combine the throughput from multiple service providers to create a fat pipe to the cloud. If any one of these providers has a problem, these solutions automatically compensate by reshaping the traffic over the remaining providers.
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