Livestream Product and Feature Releases in 2017

Livestream Product and Feature Releases for 2017

At Livestream, our goal has always been to put the unrivaled reach of live broadcast television in the hands of every storyteller. We aim to make live video accessible, regardless of your company’s size or your level of experience. Our platform enables that – giving you the ability to broadcast your events, manage your content, measure engagement, and distribute your message wherever your audience lives. Live video helps our customers tell their stories while growing reach and revenue.

Livestream is always working to improve the features that you use, so you can easily expand your event’s reach and measure success. Below are the key features we released in 2017.

Complete Access to Livestream Studio

All Livestream platform subscribers can now access the full functionality of Livestream Studio. This move is designed to give you all the capabilities of a fully-functioning broadcast studio right from your desktop PC or laptop.

Studio gives you the ability to stream to Livestream, Facebook Live, YouTube Live, or a custom RTMP destination from within the software interface. It also supports the use of multiple camera inputs and comes with a customizable graphics library intended to bring your video experience to live.

Launch of Mevo Plus 

Launched in October 2017, the all-new edition of Livestream’s pocket-sized live event camera comes with significant enhancements.

Dual antennas for speed: The 2×2 MIMO (multiple-input and multiple-output) antennas provide stronger connection strengths in noisy environments.

Newly introduced WiFi chip for faster performance and increased range: With the 802.11ac WiFi chip, you can now stay connected to Mevo Plus from over 100 feet away, more than five times the range of the first-generation Mevo.

Mevo’s Android App Release

The highly anticipated launch of the Android Mevo app is available for free in the Google Play Store. This was a very popular feature request by Mevo users and one that has all the functionalities of our iOS app. Your Android device now serves as your personal video editing suite – zoom, pan and cut with ease from a single camera.

Stream Live to YouTube, in addition to other platforms

In addition to Livestream, Facebook, Periscope and Twitter, Mevo users can also now stream live to YouTube from virtually anywhere via WiFi or LTE – in up to full HD 1080p on supported platforms. You also now have the capability to record your wide shots in stunning 4K directly to your SD card.

Free Trial – with All the Perks of the Enterprise Plan

With the introduction of a Free Trial for Livestream, we are offering access to all the features of our Enterprise plan for 30 days. This means that you can now create a free account and test the key features of our Enterprise plan. This new release gives you the opportunity to test your entire workflow and pick a livestreaming plan that best fits your business needs. Here are some popular features of our Enterprise plans:

White-Label Embeds: Remove all Livestream branding and links to create a completely white-labeled embedded player that’s not just yours – but one that is consistent with your brand.

Stream Live to Multiple Destinations with Simulcast: Expand your audience reach by delivering your livestream across RTMP-enabled destinations from a single source. With Simulcast, you get to stream to Livestream and Facebook Live simultaneously, or YouTube Live, Twitch, and Periscope.

Stream via RTMP: Take advantage of the flexibility to stream to your Livestream homepage with third-party encoding products via RTMP.

Privacy and audience controls: Make your event private to your desired audience by password-protecting it, hiding it from public view, or restricting video embeds to your website.

The free 30-day trial allows you to test the platform and all the features that our Enterprise plan has to offer with no commitment and no credit card required.

Streaming to Social: Simulcast Improvements + Analytics

We’ve added tools that make it easier for you to stream to multiple social channels and grow your audience. You can stream to multiple Facebook pages from a live event, connecting with your fans wherever they are. If you’re streaming to Facebook Live on behalf of a client, and want to stream to your own page as well, you can easily broadcast to both with the push of a button.

We’ve also added the ability to stop and start your Simulcast mid-stream. If you’re streaming to Facebook Live, and want to direct viewers back to your Livestream live-player embed, you can toggle the Facebook Live stream “off” without interrupting your event. Learn more here.

Guest Chat

Our guest chat feature for Premium and Enterprise customers makes it easier for your audience to join the conversation. Anyone watching your live event can join the chat without creating a Livestream account. Instead of navigating away from the player to sign up for an account, viewers will stay tuned to your content and won’t miss a thing.

You can choose in your account if viewers need to sign in or not to participate in your live chat. This includes support for white-labeled events as well, providing viewers with a fully unbranded in-player chat experience. To learn more, read our help center article.

Simulcast Your Stream

One dashboard to rule them all: Livestream let’s you manage all your live video content in one place, no matter where you’re streaming to. With Simulcast, you can seamlessly stream to Facebook Live, YouTube, Periscope, and Twitch from within your Livestream account.

By pushing your events to different platforms, you can tailor your message to the right audience. Brands like Tough Mudder and USA Today have already seen increased engagement by broadcasting “sneak previews” to social channels, while directing viewers back to their own websites with the Livestream player embed.

Simulcast gives you the power to choose where to stream your content – more destinations means more viewers. While your live events connect with viewers across social channels, Livestream keeps your video-on-demand archive organized and accessible from within your account. Visit our help center article to learn more about how to get started.

Simulcast Analytics

Managing your content across multiple social platforms and measuring the success of your live events is easier than ever. Gone are the days of chasing down viewer metrics across a half dozen websites. Simulcast gives producers a central hub for distributing their content, and you can measure your engagement from a single place as well. Our Simulcast Analytics release incorporates analytics from our Simulcast family of social channels into your Livestream dashboard.

The Analytics dashboard gives you an easy-to-access, bird’s-eye view of your live video metrics. Customize your Analytics view by selecting individual events or individual channels, or compare your engagement across multiple events and destinations for a comprehensive overview of your event’s reach. Learn more here.

HTML5 Player

For every improvement on the front end, there are just as many updates and releases happening in the background that enhance your Livestream experience. The Livestream platform has updated from Flash to HTML5, offering customers a more robust experience for their viewers on Livestream.com and the Livestream player embed.

Our HTML5 player – available via the Chrome browser – is more reliable and requires less processing power. Livestream is committed to future-proofing our platform, and we’re excited to extend HTML5 to popular web browsers like Safari and Firefox in the future.

Donations for All Subscribers

Online donations have grown steadily – up 7.9% in 2016 compared to 2015 – with small organizations seeing the largest growth in digital donations. This year we opened up Donations to all Livestream platform customers, giving them the ability to collect donations directly within the Livestream player. Combine the power of live video with our in-video donations feature to raise money for your organization or company, or fund more compelling online content with crowdsourced support.

From houses of worship and nonprofits to independent artists and creators, our donations feature gives your viewers an easy way to show their appreciation, without navigating away from your live event. At any point during your broadcast, viewers can donate from within the Livestream player embed, or your Livestream page.

As we continue to build and grow, we’ll bring you more Livestream features that help you tell your story and connect with viewers anywhere.


Find out what these features can do for your next live video event today.

[Case Study] How Nikon Inc is Live Streaming Their Events & Trainings

With a large remote workforce, photography industry leader Nikon Inc was looking for a way to conduct staff trainings using live video. Originally, internal trainings were their only intended use case: it was cost effective and engaging. “There’s nothing quite as engaging as a live broadcast,” said Mark Soares, Senior Marketing Manager at Nikon Inc. Since then, their strategy has evolved into live streaming events and trainings. “We realized we needed to use live streaming to reach and engage our customers,” he said.

Since starting their journey with Livestream in 2017 (now Vimeo Livestream), Nikon Inc’s reach has exploded through live streaming their events and trainings. “It’s not just an add-on to our events strategy, it’s a key part of the strategy.”


Determining a Live Stream Strategy & Metrics for Events

In terms of developing a strategy, Soares and his team eased into broadcasting live from their events. “Our initial goal was to just get the ball rolling,” he said. “It’s intimidating when you first start; many things can go wrong with a live broadcast.” As such, ease of use and setup were critical to ensure they could get their live event running smoothly.

Their first time live streaming at a trade show was during the WPPI Conference in Vegas. To determine a metrics and ROI of their live streams, the Nikon Inc team divided the number of in-person attendees at the event in half, and used that number as a benchmark goal for total live viewers. “That was our guess,” Soares said. “We really had no metric to base it on because it was our first time [doing it].”

So, how did Nikon Inc fare with their first experiment? “We exceeded it significantly. We had almost 300% more viewers than what we had initially planned.”

“With a fairly modest increase in budget, you can reach a considerably higher audience [with live streaming].”

Since then, Nikon Inc has been on a live streaming rocket ship, launching a marketing strategy built around live. This includes major product announcements and trade show events, and has become a cost-effective way to reach a larger audience than even the biggest trade shows. “People go to trade shows for education, and a lot of brands bring education to the trade show floor,” Soares said. “If you’re already bringing that talent in, then it’s really not that much of a stretch to put a camera in front of them and broadcast it.”


Image courtesy of Nikon LIVE from NAB 2018 Day 2 – Corey Rich – Paralleling Still and Motion


Selecting Content for Live Streamed Events

One key driving factor to a successful live stream is the quality of the content. Soares’s advice is common (and always applicable): listen to your customers, and you’ll better understand what they want. Then, turn that feedback into content.

“Your end users are your best ambassadors. Take the content that they create [to inform your strategy], because they will inspire others to go out and do the same thing,” he said. Soares also suggests tailoring the content to specific demographics or niche audiences. For example, at WPPI, which focuses on wedding and portraiture, Nikon Inc brought in wedding photographers to share their expertise with attendees and live viewers.

“Take great content, great talent, and schedule it on a regular basis, and users will keep tuning in,” he said. “That’s why the audience keeps growing every single time we do this. You will add viewers to your event every single time. Incrementally, we keep expanding the viewership.”

Tips to Promote & Prepare for a Live Stream

Leading up to every major live stream, Soares and his team rolls out a turnkey marketing strategy to attract new and existing customers. First and foremost, Soares suggests building in paid marketing to your promotional planning. In addition to a paid social media campaign, Nikon Inc also:

  • Updates a landing page whenever a new event approaches
  • Sends email campaigns to current customers promoting their upcoming live programming
  • Features banners on their website with information about the live stream

Nikon Inc has found great value in simulcasting to Facebook Live, as well. “The viewership lives on social media,” he said. “While we get great numbers from streaming to our own site, we supplement that with our social channels, too.”

Don’t forget about the experience for your live viewers, too. “You’ve got to get great talent on camera that can speak eloquently to inspire your user base,” Soares said. “Look to give a great experience through the actual broadcast. We started with a single, fixed camera, and now we have many cameras where we can change the angle, etc — it’s very cinematic.”

However you plan to promote your live event, iteration and consistency is essential. “Start with something you can manage and build on it. There’s this exponential growth when you do these events on a regular basis and with great content. People will keep coming back.”


Nikon’s Technical Setup for Live Streaming

Wondering how Nikon Inc sets themselves up for success with their live streams? Here’s the equipment they use for their live broadcasts:

  • 2 Nikon cameras/lenses (of course), sometimes with a roving camera
  • Cameras are hardwired into a 4K Livestream HD550 (💡Tip: Nikon uses 4K cropping, which increases production level so two cameras look like six)
  • Livestream Studio
  • One back up Livestream Studio HD550

“Nikon makes cameras, but we are not in the business of broadcasting live events,” he said. “We needed a system that would be portable and easy to use, so that almost anyone could use it.”


Why Vimeo Livestream?

As a leading brand in the photography space worldwide, Nikon Inc needed an all-in-one solution that would make live streaming smooth for their large remote workforce and even bigger global audience. Whether internal or external, Nikon Inc’s live streams require a sophisticated workflow with a robust cloud solution, that was also portable and all inclusive. Vimeo Livestream fit the bill: a platform that makes live streaming simple and accessible, along with powerful and portable hardware — the Studio HD550 is Nikon Inc’s encoder of choice.

Livestream is the only end-to-end solution that empowers you to distribute compelling live content, engage your employees, and grow your business. To find out how to get started with live streaming, check out our “Ultimate Guide to Live Streaming Events” guide.