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How do I start a live stream video on Instagram in 2020 (laptop, pc, mac, desktop, computer)?

12 min read
October 22, 2020

Guide to Instagram Live

The same way as Facebook and YouTube do, Instagram allows you to create livestreams.

Instagram not only allows you to create them but also engage with viewers in creative ways and attract new followers to your account. Instagram broadcasts are a great opportunity for brands to connect with the audience and let people get to know the company more. This way, followers can send you questions through comments or Q&A stickers. Hosts can use Instagram face filters and invite other viewers to join the live. You can also watch and host broadcasts from your Windows PC and Mac computer, laptop, and desktop computer.

Top broadcastings you can usually discover through the explore page on Instagram. It helps influencers and brands to increase their reach and searchability.

Instagram broadcastings are an amazing opportunity to connect and interact with the following base around the world.

How do you use this Instagram feature? How to stream from your Windows PC and Mac computer, laptop, and desktop computer? Where can you find broadcasts on Instagram? How to apply face filters for the and invite other viewers to join the broadcast? How to promote your Instagram real-time recording?

Where to Find Live Videos on Instagram?

How do you know if the IG account you follow has a broadcasting?

At the top of your screen, on the stories bar, you'll see accounts you follow with their profile pictures inside circles. When you see the word "Live" at the bottom of the circle, it means that the person is streaming at this moment. If you want to watch it, just tap on their profile picture. Another way to discover lives is through the explore page.

The explore page lets you discover the most popular streaming videos at the current moment. Instagram offers a curated compilation of streams based on their view count, location, language, etc. This is a great way to find brands and influencers.

During the video streaming, you can send your reactions the same way you do for the posts. You can tap on the heart icon at the bottom right corner of the screen and like the streaming, or send your comment. If the comments and likes from other viewers bother you, you can easily hide them by tapping on the screen.
instagram live stream
Once you join the live stream, other participants and the host will know that you're watching the video.

How to Go Live on Instagram

To start streaming on Instagram, tap on your profile photo on the stories bar or on the camera icon at the top left corner of the screen.

The next step is to choose the stream from the offered options:

  • Post a photo or a video
  • Boomerang - looping clip
  • Rewind - the clip that plays in reverse
  • Hands-free
  • Live - recording of a clip in real-time. After you finish recording, you can save the broadcast to stories or IGTV.
Select the Start the Live option, but before you start recording, you can go to settings and choose who you want to hide your streams from. You can also restrict the ability of other users to send you messages by opting the people you follow on the IG.
instagram live on pc
Once you're done with the settings, you can start broadcasting.

Keep in mind that IG streaming is limited to one hour. That's why you should watch your battery life, the quality of the internet connection, and the time if you want to save your live stream.

Instagram Live on Desktop

How can you start streaming from the Windows PC, Mac, laptop, or desktop computer?

Streams can be of great help for growing the following base on Instagram and any social network. The thing is that you can't start streaming from a PC, Mac, laptop, or desktop computer. The only way you're allowed to start a stream is through the IG app on your mobile device. Because of it, you can't apply even the basic tools available for desktop computers to produce even better content.

But not anymore. With the Loola.tv tool, you can stream to Instagram and other social networks from your Windows PC, Mac, laptop, or desktop computer.

First of all, you need to sign in with your Google account. Access the tool with your Windows PC or Mac laptop, and create an account. Once you create an account, you'll need to configure your social media accounts by tapping on the gear icon.

After that, connect your camera to the tool. You can choose a built-in camera or an external camera. Connect your microphone, and choose the platform for the stream, and click on the "Go live". When viewers send comments during your stream, you'll see the comments in the chat column.

Keep in mind that you can't comment while streaming, unlike on the IG app from the phone. Also, if you want to watch your live performance, you'll need to login from a different account.

When you want to end the broadcast, just click on the "End" button.
go live on instagram

Managing Your Streaming Video

Once you start streaming, your followers will receive a notification that you're broadcasting.

When the streaming starts, you'll be able to see hearts from your followers and receive comments. You can type the topic of your broadcasting, post it, and pin the message. Also, you can pin comments from the followers that you like, and report the ones that you consider inappropriate. You can see who's watching your video and block users if they are disrespectful.

Some users might tune in to your broadcasting way after you started talking. That's why it's important to remind your audience what's the topic of the conversation, or better yet, to post and pin the title in the comments section.

You can record yourself or switch up the camera view and demonstrate your surroundings.
instagram live on mac

How to Invite Friends to Join the Translation

IG allows you to co-host streams. If you want to join a broadcasting, simply tap the request option at the comments section.

Hosts will see the requests when they click on two smiley faces. They have a choice to accept them and let you join the live, or reject them. Hosts can also choose to co-host the broadcasting with their viewers.

If you're hosting a live show, you can remove any guest at any time. If you accept the request to co-host, then the screen will split in two. Co-hosting is a great option for the brands to invite influencers to the broadcasting.

Face Filters on Live Streams

This is the social media world. Here you literally create the reality. If simply recording yourself seems boring, you can always add a little bit of fun by using face filters. This feature lets you add countless things: jewelry, glasses, wings, hats, stars, glitter, change the color of your hair, and so much more.

This is a good way to dilute your broadcasting with bright colors. Although, you should keep in mind that whatever filter or mask you choose to apply should fit the topic. You can create your own customized mask for your brand and apply it during streams or while recording stories.

Some face filters are static. Some react to your movements and adjust accordingly. IG regularly updates their set of filters. But you can also choose face masks and filters from the creators' accounts or create your own.

To apply a filter or face mask during the video, tap on the smiley face in the bottom right corner and select the one that you want. You can do it both before or at any moment during the video broadcasting.

How to Send Live Videos in DMs

Once you start broadcasting, you can click on the airplane icon at the bottom of your screen and send your translation to your friends through direct messages. Your friends will be able to see the broadcasting if they are online currently. Once you end your translation, they will receive a notification that your broadcasting has ended.

Hot to End Broadcast

When you want to end the broadcasting, just tap on the "End" button. After that, you will be able to see how many people joined you during your translation.

After you end the broadcasting, you can save it to your camera roll, share it to your stories, or IGTV.

Tips for Successful Translation

What's the purpose?

Think about your objectives and plan ahead. What do you want to achieve with the translation? Why is this content valuable to your audience?

Some translations feature Q&A sessions, announcements of the new collections, contests, or giveaways. If your translation is the only way your followers can discover the upcoming news, that's a great incentive for them to join.

Q&A sessions are common among various brands because this is a good opportunity for the followers to ask you what they want to know and receive exceptional information.

A lot of companies invite popular bloggers and influencers to join the translation. This way, you have an opportunity to gather more people for your translation.

Promote your translation on social media in advance

Take care of spreading the news. If you want more people to join the translation, make sure you tell them about it in advance. You can send your followers emails, post about the upcoming translation on your social media, cross-promote it on all your social media channels.
instagram live video

Engage with your viewers

Don't forget that the whole idea of your live stream is to engage with the audience. It's all about them. You're here to connect with them and build a bond. Ask questions, acknowledge their comments, and co-host your broadcasting sessions to get to know your audience better.

Record a test video

If you're new to the broadcasting in real-time, it may be a good idea to test the sound and the quality of the video and connection first.

Find the suitable background that will be visually appealing but not too distracting for the followers. Make sure you're in a quiet place, and there are no loud noises in your surroundings. It will help you to improve the sound quality and minimize distractions.

Now you can start recording. Check the lighting and the sound quality, and don't forget to charge your phone.

Create a script

If you're planning to talk for at least 30 minutes, it means you have a lot to say. In this case, it's better to make sure you don't forget the most important things you wanted to highlight in your speech. If you're launching a new product or want your audience to check something out, include a call to action, like "Check out the new collection at the website".

Interact in DMs and answer questions

If you've asked your followers to prepare questions and send them to you through direct messages or the Q&A box, make sure you'll take a look and answer them.

Also, answer your followers in DMs. It can be tiring, especially if you have a huge audience, but it means a lot for the followers. And remember that they support you and are loyal to your brand. Interacting with your audience on social media is not too much to ask. It helps in building the connection. Besides, if there are too many similar questions, you can always throw a Q&A in stories or start a live stream.

Summarize your translation through the post or IG story

You should take into consideration that your followers might live in different time zones. Hence not everybody can join your translation in time. That's why if you've made important announcements during the translation, highlight it through the post or IG story. They shouldn't feel left out.

Analyze the metrics

After you end the translation, make a screenshot of the number of people who have watched it. This will help you to compare the progress of the next translations.

Treat it like the introduction

IG broadcastings are the most personal way to connect with the audience. You're not just posting content to social media. You should talk with your followers like they stand in front of you.

You greet them, ask them how they are, encourage them to ask questions, reply to them.

IG translations are really important for the brands. This is a huge opportunity to introduce yourself, tell your story, and build long-term relationships with your followers. It's important to be genuine and tell about all the advantages of your product or service.

You can prepare for the translation, but this is when people can see you. Hence, being yourself is the best tactic.

If you're a blogger or an influencer, talk to your audience like they are your friends, and you just casually discuss something. And if you're a brand, you need to remember that among your audience may be a lot of people who don't know you. That's why you should showcase the brand from the best angles.

Interaction with the followers impacts the growth of your business.

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Answers on the most
common questions
Where to find the Instagram live video?
When you see the word "Live" at the bottom of the circle around the profile picture of the account you follow, it means that the person is streaming currently. Another way to broadcast videos is through the explore page.
How to go live on Instagram?
To start a real-time stream on IG, you need to tap on your profile photo on the stories bar or on the camera icon at the top left corner of the screen and select the option to start a stream.
How to stream on Instagram from your desktop?
To stream a video from your computer, you might want to check out the Loola.tv. Access the tool and create an account. After that, configure your social media accounts, connect the microphone and camera.