The rapid growth of social entrepreneurship leaves significant room for social businesses and nonprofits to improve their connection with supporters online. Social entrepreneurs aim to create positive change in the world through their businesses, nonprofit or charity organizations, and social impact projects. That means, connecting with key audiences like donors, volunteers, co-creators, colleagues, and your community members is an important part of social entrepreneurship. This article explains how social entrepreneurs can use live streaming to amplify their impact and gain supporters.

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Getting Started with Live Streaming for Impact

Live streaming gives social entrepreneurs a powerful tool to help them achieve their goals. In an upcoming episode of the Social Impact Level Up Podcast, guest Dorothy O’Dell explains the power of live streaming to raise awareness about an issue and gather donations in a telethon-style event.

It’s a brilliant strategy and can be a game changer for organizations that need to grow their audience online. In this guide, we’ll explore the power of live streaming for social entrepreneurs and how you can use it to amplify your impact.

Wendie Veloz on Dorothy O’Dell’s Unstoppable Business Owners Live Stream Show

What is Live Streaming?

Live streaming is the process of broadcasting real-time video content over the internet. With live streaming, you can reach a large and diverse audience in real-time, and interact with them in ways that are not possible with pre-recorded videos. 

You can live stream on social media platforms like YouTube Live, Facebook Live, and Instagram Live. Using your social media channels provides you with an opportunity to engage with your audience, showcase your work, and share your social impact message.

Live Streaming for Nonprofits

Live streaming is an especially valuable tool for social entrepreneurs working in the nonprofit sector. By live streaming, nonprofits can reach a wider audience and build stronger connections with supporters, volunteers, donors, and stakeholders. 

Live streaming helps nonprofits educate the public about their social cause, mobilize support, and raise awareness about the issues they care about. For example, a nonprofit organization promoting sustainable agriculture could live stream a tour of their farm, share updates on their progress, and create Q&A opportunities to gain interest in their work.

Nonprofit organizations can use live streaming as a vehicle to connect with potential donors by raising awareness of their social issues. They can also use live streaming as a vehicle to create more impact by helping potential clients see the value in their services and recognize their organization as a trustworthy source of support.

The Power of Live Streaming for Social Impact

Live streaming helps you reach a large and diverse audience including new supporters and volunteers. You can engage with existing stakeholders and showcase how you make an impact. Live streaming also allows you to interact with your audience in real-time, helping to build trust and credibility with your audience, and increase the impact of your work.

In addition, live streaming can help social entrepreneurs, like you, to tell your story more effectively. By sharing the stories of the people and communities you serve, you can raise awareness and mobilize support for your cause. 

Live streaming can also help build a community of supporters around your work, creating a network of people who are invested in your success and who can help to spread your message. There are many live streamers who have a regular presence on specific social media platforms with a following who are dedicated to attending each live stream. These online communities can help you gain a regular follower base that can amplify your message for you through their engagement and by sharing your content.

Tips for Effective Live Streaming

If you’re a social entrepreneur looking to unleash the power of live streaming, here are the top tips to help you get started:

  1. Plan ahead: Before you start live streaming, think about what you want to share and how you want to engage with your audience. Make sure you have a clear message and a plan for how you will interact with your audience during the live stream. For social entrepreneurs, easy live stream topics include:
    1. Telling your impact story
    2. Updating on progress towards a specific goal or recent achievements
    3. Highlighting success stories from people you serve
  2. Ensure your feed is stable: Working off your wifi may not be the best strategy as some Livestream platforms can require a lot of bandwidth. If possible, plug your computer directly into your router and ensure your upload and download speeds are high enough to hold the stream steady. You may need to invest in a better router or higher bandwidth speeds if your stream is not stable.
  1. Use good lighting and sound: Make sure your live stream looks and sounds professional by using good lighting and sound equipment. A well-lit and well-sound live stream will help to engage your audience and keep them interested in your content.
  1. Engage with your audience: During the live stream, make sure to engage with your audience by answering questions, asking for feedback, and responding to comments. This will help to build a relationship with your followers and increase the impact of your live stream. Engaging with your audience can seem difficult, how can you possibly do everything at the same time? Many streaming platforms allow you to display comments from your audience during the feed or you can have a Q&A portion where you only focus on questions during that part of the live show. 
  1. Promote your live stream: Before you start live streaming, make sure to promote your event to your followers and other stakeholders. This will help to build an audience for your live stream and increase its impact. Post at least a week to 3 days in advance of your event. Many streaming platforms will allow you to schedule your stream so you can link directly to the feed on social media.  

Advanced Live Streaming Techniques

Want to give your live stream a little extra? Having important guests on your stream? There are some really simple hacks you can use to make your live stream stand out. These tips will help you go from novice live streamer to expert-looking shows easily. 

  1. Invest in streaming software to stream to multiple platforms at once. You can use StreamYard to stream to at least 3 platforms each time you go live. The benefit of streaming to multiple platforms is that you can reach a wider audience and engage more people in your network. 
  2. Give your stream link to your guests ahead of time. The Restream platform allows you to send a link to your guest that allows them to connect the stream to their social media channels. This is extremely beneficial for guests with larger audiences than yours.
  3. Use your phone as a 2nd camera angle. This hack was super cool for live streaming from two locations such as a desk and whiteboard in the same show. You can add your phone to the feed and disable the microphone by plugging in a cut-off old pair of headphones. This makes your camera on the phone a second viewpoint without audio feedback from the microphone. 
  4. Create overlays and graphics for your show. Many streaming platforms allow you to show gifs, videos, and overlays in your live stream. You can create show-specific art or use overlays instead of slides to teach a concept. Keep the center of your overlay clear of design and download the transparent PNG file to have your video feed show up with the overlay on top of it. You can learn more about creating overlays here.

Live streaming is a powerful tool for social entrepreneurs who want to amplify their impact. Live streaming helps social entrepreneurs reach a wider audience, engage with supporters and stakeholders, and tell their stories more effectively. 

Whether you’re a nonprofit organization, a social enterprise, or an individual working to create positive change, live streaming can help you to reach your goals and make a lasting impact. Live streaming helps you tell your impact story in a way that is authentic and engaging.

Gabe Leal’s Show Demonstrates Advance Live Streaming Production Techniques

Practice Makes Perfect 

If you’re reluctant to use live streaming as a strategy because you are afraid of creating live content, all you need is a little bit of practice. Practice telling your story in the Uplevel Your Story Challenge. 

The Uplevel Your Story challenge helps you prepare to use a strategy like live streaming to reach your audiences on a deeper level. The challenge walks you through the planning stage where you decide how to share your story in a way that will help you make a bigger impact.

By creating your core stories, and key messages, and understanding the digital assets you can use to tell your story…you’ll be completely ready to hop on a live stream and share your engaging story.

After this 30-day challenge, you’ll be more confident sharing your impact story because you’ll have clarity about what to share, how to share, and where to share it. Get the challenge delivered directly to your inbox right now. 

Image of 30 day content calendar for social entrepreneurs to tell their story during the Uplevel Your Story challenge pictured in a black iphone on white background.

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