[Edit: This guide was created in 2015. Find updated information in the current guide]
asWith so many great people wanting to do charity live streams and so many fantastic causes to fund raise for, there’s always the question, “How do I run a successful charity live stream?”
At it’s face value it seems simple: pick a charity, play games, and encourage people to donate. While this is true, for a live stream to be successful there are several other factors that need to be taken into consideration, especially if you are a small to medium sized channel without the natural outreach of hundreds of thousands, if not millions of fans. This is especially true if you plan on doing a group stream where multiple things need to be kept track of.
The following How To Guide for broadcasters is built out of my research & experiences so far and is meant to assist anyone looking to run a charity stream themselves. The following are certainly not the only methods or resources at your disposal, but it’s my intention that this guide should serve as a complete explanation of what needs to be done to run a charity live stream.
[Disclaimer 1: I intend to mention many, MANY resources and companies in this list, especially as time goes on and the guide grows. This guide is not meant as a review of these tools and services, simply that they are available as options to use. I may do product reviews in the future specifically as blog posts and I’ll try to link to those reviews where appropriate.
At the moment I am not getting paid or sponsored by any of these companies, but if any of these companies do decide to help CLS, financially or otherwise, I will clearly make mention of it next to their name. If there are any companies mentioned in this way, please check them out. It’s my goal to continually improve CLS’s free features over the years and any company or group that’s awesome enough to help me out deserves the recognition.
Likewise, if you’re a representative of any companies or groups listed and are interested in helping broadcasters help charity, either by financially helping this site, providing information/tutorial materials specific to broadcasting charity streams, cross promotion, or any other methods for CLS growth and operation, please contact me! The more CLS grows, the more we can help raise money for causes to help others.]
“How Do I Run A Successful Charity Live Stream?”
Let’s start with the basics. There are 10 steps that every individual or group goes through when organizing a charity live stream, regardless of size or scope. Click each of the steps below to be taken to it’s section down the page:
If you’re reading this you probably thought out several of these steps, but I’m hopefully the resources and advice below will help you solidify your decisions. While most of these steps are relatively straightforward, I’ve created the below document to serve as a Charity Live Stream Boot Camp of sorts. If you’ve never done a charity live stream before then you’ll get all the information you need below, and then some, to prepare yourself for running an awesome event. If you’ve already done several events you may notice I’m going out of my way to organize and quantify information you may have already learned through experience, however I’ve also done my best to add in resources and tools from my market research to validate CLS from a business perspective, so there should be several tidbits of information you wouldn’t know already.
Despite the size of this How To guide, there’s no way that I could go in depth into every aspect of creating, promoting, and running a charity live stream. Thus, if your interested in learning more about marketing and startup strategies, please sign in to your account and check out my Marketing Article Collection.
Also, if you go through this how to guide and find that there is information missing and want to help out, I highly encourage you to check out the Charity Live Stream Wiki that I created for the community to build a central knowledge base on this topic. I’m just one man with a limited amount of time, resources, and knowledge. I hope by having the wiki available to the community we can more easily help one another raise money to help others.
Alright then, let’s get started!
Step 1 – Choosing A Charity
The most personal and meaningful aspect of a charity live stream starts with determining who you’ll be raising money for and what that money will be raised to do. Whether it’s an international organization or a local non-profit, the cause you support with your stream should be something that means something to you. Remember, you’re going to be spending several days, sometimes weeks, worth of work. The cause you choose should be something you’re inspired by, especially if you’ll be doing an extended live stream. That way, even when you’re exhausted by the end, you’ll know you worked to help others.
How Do I Know If The Charity Does What It’s Supposed To?
The best answer is to always do thorough research into the organizations you’re interested in supporting. Non-profits are usually required to list out the percentages for how their donations are spent. A basic rule of thumb is that an organization should spend the vast majority of it’s funds on it’s mission. To be more specific, the percentage of funds being used on overhead and salaries should be well below the 35% BBB Wise Giving Alliance industry standard.
Additionally, non-profits will sometimes have special grants that, when contributed to, require funds be spent on the specific program that the grant is indicated for rather than general overhead. Contact the non-profit you’re interested in directly to inquire about any such programs they are running.
Validating USA Non-Profits
In the USA there’s a government program called the Combined Federal Campaigns (CFC) that runs direct payroll deductions to non-profit organizations & gathers information on non-profits for public awareness. If you’re in need of a starting point for your research I’d recommend checking out their website.
Main Site – http://www.opm.gov/combined-federal-campaign/
Here they have a page with resources recommended for validating charity organizations:
There’s also a resource for finding charities specific to your area within the USA:
CFC Local Campaign Locator- http://www.opm.gov/combined-federal-campaign/find-local-campaigns/locator/
And to save everyone some time, here’s one of the charity search pages you can use to search all 21,680 charities registered:
Norcal CFC Charity Search – http://www.norcalcfc.org/_root/index.php?content_id=5096
(Click “More Search Options” via the blue button below the search field, select you’re parameters for the search, and hit the “Perform Search” button.)
There’s a filter in this search for international charities, but if there are credible resources for validating local non-profits outside the USA please let me know.
I REALLY don’t know which charity to raise money for. Help!
Maybe you have multiple causes or organizations you’d like to raise money for. Consider whether you need a charity that already has the tools in place to integrate with a charity stream. Usually non-profits that have worked with broadcasters before know about charity live streams and have a process in place to make donation collection easier. Having a donation collection mechanism that let’s you not touch the donations is a big step in ensuring the trust of your viewers [See more in step 5]. Also, organizations that have participated in charity live streams before don’t need to be educated on the process. Conversations with the organizations can quickly move from “Wait, what are you doing?” to “Awesome, how can we help?”.
If you really don’t know who to raise money for, then some good staples are non-profits that align themselves with video games in some way. Since the majority of charity live streams are currently gaming streams, optimization for receiving donations has already been achieved by organizations like AbleGamers, Child’s Play Charity, Operation Supply Drop, etc. who make video games part of their mission in helping others. Their frequent interactions with broadcasters also make them great partners if it is your first charity stream.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 2 – Choosing A Broadcast Host
What is a broadcast host?
A broadcast host is the website where people will go to watch you’re charity live stream while it’s happening. Chances are if you’re reading this then you already have one in mind but it’s an area where there are many different companies entering this space. Most companies will try to offer specific features or target specific types of streamers in order to make themselves stand out from the competition so it’s important to research what the features are (the main site offering, what streaming services connect to it, and what plug-ins are available), what the type of stream you want to do is, and if that company best suits your needs.
Broadcast Host List
I’ve compiled a short list of potential companies below. Again, this guide isn’t a review of which companies are preferable. The first two on the below list, Twitch & Picarto, have been chosen by test users for their events. All others are listed in no particular order.
- Twitch – www.twitch.tv (Gaming)
- Picarto – www.picarto.tv (Art/Drawing)
- Hitbox – www.hitbox.tv (Gaming)
- YouTube – www.youtube.com (Video)
- Livestream – www.livestream.com (Paid/No Ads)
- USTREAM – www.ustream.tv (Business)
- Meerkat – www.meerkatapp.co (Mobile)
- Periscope – www.periscope.tv (Mobile)
- YouNow – www.younow.com (General)
I’ve added a category next to each for the focus I, personally, see as their niche.
Please know that this list isn’t exhaustive of all companies and if you use a different platform and want it added to the list please contact me and I’ll add it in.
If you’re a representative of a company below and feel the category is incorrect or if you would like to add additional details to your listing, please contact me.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 3 – Deciding A Date/Length/Time
Although circumstances are always different based on personal availability and the availability of your community, the majority of charity live streams happen from Friday afternoons to Sunday evenings. This is for the obvious reason that these are the days when most people have time off to run and watch streams for a prolonged, continuous amount of time.
There are usually several charity streams each weekend, so at the moment there doesn’t seem to be a particular time of month that’s better than others. If there’s a particular date that is special to you, either because of the cause or because of a related/unrelated anniversary, then please feel free to go ahead and do it on that date. Often people will watch your event if they feel it’s special and, as long as you keep in mind your communities availability to actually watch and contribute to your event, then you should be fine.
Most live streams fall under one of 3 categories in regards to length for the stream: Fixed Length, Until Goal Is Reached, & Until Too Tired To Continue.
Fixed Length streams are as they seem, the broadcaster will stream content for the length of time they promise beforehand. Typically, this type falls under one of 5 hour lengths: 6, 12, 24, 48, 48+. The first 4 are most common as they fit nicely into a weekend stream. A 48+ hour stream is usually associated with larger events and may also have a goal tied to another length type.
Until Goal Is Reached streams are streams where a broadcaster will continue streaming until the donation goal is reached. Depending on whether the donation goal is set at a reasonable level and the broadcaster’s stamina, these events have the potential to veer into the Until Too Tired To Continue type of stream.*
*Note: It’s important to know your personal limits and to properly take care of yourself during the stream regardless of length. Gaming streamers, especially. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in the game, the cause, and the experience of broadcasting for the fundraiser. Whenever possible, I recommend having a partner for the stream to help give your voice a rest, aid in keeping the content going, taking some of the pressure off, reminding each other to take breaks, and adding more fun to the event. This is especially true if you’re going to attempt a longer length stream and isn’t limited to the broadcaster, but the whole team (chat mods, promoters, participants, etc).
As with the date of you’re event it’s best to choose a start time for your stream that reflects when your community is going to be available to watch. Combine common sense logic with the knowledge you already have about your users. Most individuals will not have the chance to sit down for a prolonged stream until after they’re done with the day’s work. Typically this means that a stream on a weekday should start later and a stream on a weekend can start anytime, however if you know that the majority of your community lives in a drastically different time zone, then you’ll want to try and line up your stream to reach them. This is especially true for shorter streams. If you are doing a long stream that’s 24+ hours then you’ll be less worried about the initial start time, but you’ll still want to consider when you’re viewers will be around to watch and participate.
Most importantly, though, be sure to pick a time that best works into your own schedule. Viewership factors should be kept in mind, of course, but since you will be doing the actual streaming you’ll need a time frame that allows you to run the stream effectively.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 4 – Choosing A Donation Platform
When people are watching your charity live stream they’ll use a link to go to the charity’s page to donate.
It’s almost always recommended that you use a donation platform to handle donations instead of having people donate to a personal account and then you donating to the charity. There’s a large amount of distrust for this method since it’s difficult to verify donations received, and, depending on the process you use, the donated funds have the chance of being tapped twice for fees (once when the community donates and again if you use a digital platform to donate). Even if you send a check to get around this issue that has it’s own set of transparency issues since the non-profit will have to do extra work to receive their funds and get a confirmation back to you.
By using a donation platform you take the money management out of your hands so you can focus on creating entertaining content for your stream. Donation platforms usually fall under one of two types for you to choose from: websites owned/managed by the non-profits and 3rd party donation platforms.
Non-profits that are larger in size or have technically savvy members will sometimes have donation platforms hosted directly through their domain name. The features and functionality of these platforms can vary due to the non-profit management software it’s based off of, but using a non-profits site directly is usually the best way to validate that donations will go to the non-profit. However, some non-profit software companies take larger percentages of donations for offering full service solutions and it’s rare a donation platform built from scratch by a non-profit, eliminating such fees.
I personally advise that you contact the charity you want to fund raise for and ask them for the method of donation they prefer as well as asking about 3rd party donation platforms, which may allow more donations to go directly to their causes.
3rd Party Donation Platforms
We live in an amazing time where new ways to leverage technology for charity are cropping up everywhere. There are many companies that offer their platforms as a means to donate to non-profits while providing either great features, lower percentages, or both for fundraisers. However, features and percentages taken vary from platform to platform so it’s recommended to always do careful research before you make your decision. I’ve compiled a short list of potential platforms that are commonly used which allow or encourage non-profit donations.
- Tiltify – www.tiltify.com (Live Stream Specific)
- I’mRaising – www.imraising.tv (Lowest Fee)
- GoFundMe – www.gofundme.com
- Razoo – www.razoo.com
- CrowdRise – www.crowdrise.com
- CauseVox – www.causevox.com
Details on how to set up a donation page can be found on each website. Again, this guide isn’t a review of which companies are preferable.
If you know of other platforms then please contact me and I’ll add them to the list.
If you’re a representative for one of the companies and you’d like to add additional detailing for your listing then please contact me. Please note, that if you wish for your donation platform to be added to the list you MUST have a active public disclosure page of the fees associated with using your site.
Deciding On A Platform
It should first be noted that while Charity Live Stream is based on the core principle that we will never take a donation percentage from fundraisers, CLS is also a platform that does not handle monetary transactions. Since we don’t handle donated money, there are many costs and system requirement standards that we do not need to meet. This, combined with our revenue strategy and support from the community, allows CLS to operate without directly taking from fund raisers.
However, the fact that platforms take a percentage isn’t a bad thing in and of itself, but the value that these platforms provide needs to match or exceed their cut. Donation platforms take percentages in order to provide feature sets which allow greater ease of use and, subsequently, more funds to be raised than without those features. The larger the percentage, the larger and more “turn key” of a solution they need to provide to their users. Therefore, I feel there are 3 key aspects you want to look for while deciding the platform you’ll use: Beneficial Features & Add-ons, Donation Receipt Validation, & Percentage Received By The Non-Profit
— Beneficial Features & Add-ons
Although the potential features are numerous, a donation platform you choose should have features, or integrated 3rd party add-ons, that allow you basic functionality:
- Dedicated Donation Page (So people have a place to go that’s tied to your event)
- Ability To See Incoming Donations (To track progress and thank donators)
- Ability To Track How Much Was Raised (To track fundraiser success)
- Receive Confirmation That Donations Were Sent To The Non-Profit (To ensure donations got to where they needed to go)
Additional features you require will vary based on what you want to achieve and the type of content that you’re doing for the stream. Some platforms really go all out to make it easy for the fund raiser, aka you, and the less work it takes to make the live stream successful, the more effective your efforts will be.
— Donation Receipt Validation
There are some platforms where the charities themselves create an account and, although you’re creating a donation page specifically for your event, their account is publicly tied to your event. This level of public validation directly on the donation page adds a level of transparency to the donation process, which is especially good for assuring those who may be donating for the first time that their funds will go where they’re supposed to.
— Percentage Received By The Non-Profit
Finally, although features are always helpful, you should always be fully aware of where the donated money is going, and in what percentages, before the event starts. This way you can answer any questions from your community and accurately gauge if you want to use the same platform in the future. I’m adding a list of links to the pricing pages of all the previously mentioned donation platforms below so everyone can make an informed choice.
- Tiltify – http://info.tiltify.com/knowledgebase/articles/403063-what-are-the-fees
- I’mRaising – https://imraising.tv/main/faq
- GoFundMe – https://www.gofundme.com/pricing
- Razoo – http://www.razoo.com/razoo-difference
- CrowdRise – https://www.crowdrise.com/charities/choose
- CauseVox – http://www.causevox.com/pricing/
[Disclosure: The charity streams I’ve worked on in the past have used both Tiltify and I’mRaising to process donations. I find them both useful for different reasons. As mentioned in the broadcasting hosts section, this guide is not a review list. I’ve provided the above links to all pricing pages to ensure you all can make informed decisions, but the final decision is up to you. I encourage everyone to do your own research and talk with the non-profit you wish to raise money for to select the most appropriate platform for your charity stream. ]
^ Back To Top ^
Step 5 – Deciding The Content For The Stream
Now that you have the who, when, and where decided, you’ll need to make sure you know what you’ll be doing during the stream. Gamers, artists, musicians, creators of all sorts and sizes, everyone has talents and are able to provide entertainment during a stream. Whatever you decide to do you’ll need to make sure that it’s something you enjoy since you’ll be doing it for many hours as you encourage people to donate money towards your goal. If you’re unsure about what to do then the quickest way to figure it out is to answer the three questions below.
Who Will Be Broadcasting & Who Will Be Their Support?
If you want to run a successful stream, then you need to fulfill a minimum of three roles: the broadcaster, the chat moderator, and the stream promoter. These roles are defined by the basic necessities of a charity stream. This holds true whether you’re planning on doing a solo broadcast or running a big group stream.
- A Broadcaster provides the content being viewed in the video. They are the primary entertainment that people come to see.
- A Chat Mod ensures viewer interaction and a lively chat through the event. They are also in charge of making sure links to the donation page are regularly posted in the chat so those viewing on mobile devices get easy access to donate.
- A Stream Promoter ensures that there’s a continuous outreach on social media channels during the event to draw people in. A crucial and often overlooked role that can make or break a charity live stream’s success.
While there are tools to help perform these functions if you’re attempting a solo stream, I recommend 2-3 people are involved per stream, rotating roles, for everyone to keep their sanity.
While these roles represent the bare minimum for a stream, those who perform large group streams will find that there are 5 additional roles, for a total of 8, that are usually filled.
- A Writer for press release(s), media kit, the donation page, information page (see below), emails, blog posts, and other content that will be used for promoting the stream.
- A Communicator/Press Contact to talk directly with bloggers, journalists, and anyone else who would be interested in signal boosting the message that your charity stream is happening. Additionally this role would talk directly with the non-profits as well as businesses for getting sponsorships & swag for contest giveaways.
- An Artist/Graphic Designer to create visual content to draw people in and promote the event.
- A Video Editor to pull together a promo video for the stream before hand and to create highlights after the event is over.
- A Coordinator to make sure everyone in the above roles are working in tandem as well as handling tasks like broadcaster schedules.
I use the term “roles” since people will often wear many hats while preparing for a charity live stream. A writer may also be a press contact before the stream starts and a broadcaster or chat moderator as it’s happening. Additionally, it’s not uncommon for multiple people to share roles, especially as Stream Promoters since getting the knowledge about the stream out to as many individuals as possible is paramount for a streams success.
The people that make up your team need to be dedicated rock stars like yourself. Charity streams can be long, drawn out ordeals and the people joining you need to be willing to push themselves to exhaustion and love every minute of it. Not to mention that there’s almost always things that come up you won’t think about. (Is there food and drink for everyone? Are they actually taking the breaks they need to? What do we do if the stream drops or get hit with a BSOD? Do we have a contingency plan? etc) Everyone on the team needs to be able to think on their toes and dedicate themselves to the event while it’s going on.
Luckily, I’ve never met a gamer or artist who’s committed to an event without giving a 100%. I personally feel it’s just not in our nature to quit, especially when we’re working towards a goal that’s bigger than ourselves. So if you’re planning an event and realizing you need some assistance, reach out to the community, I’m @clivestream on twitter, and you’re sure to find some help.
What Will Be Streamed?
Now that the team is assembled, we get to the main question of how will you entertain people during the stream. At face value it’s a pretty simple answer, just do what you love. If you’re a gamer, then play games. If you’re an artist, broadcast yourself drawing. Play to your strengths and do something that your passionate about. That passion will show through in your commentary and the quality of the stream. That being said there are, of course, a million ways to strategize and make really compelling content.
The beauty of successful charity live streams is that the content is unique. It’s a special event so the content itself should be special in some way. Maybe you play a game you love with special restrictions (Pacifist, Extreme Mode, etc.). Maybe you play a community favorite and let them decide how you play (see the section below for more ideas). Or maybe you gather up a bunch of your buddies and pull games out of a hat that you can all play together.
Whatever it is you decide to do, this is the time to get creative. Bonus points if you find a clever way to work in the charity and the game. Themes work well for events because it gives potential views a fast association of what to expect while also catching their interest. Here’s an example: Want to support Doctor’s Without Borders? Try Surgeon Simulator, Trauma Center, or Dark Cut [If you’re into that sort of game. ;-) ].
Remember you’re goal is to provide entertainment that’s special to that stream and that will resonate with your audience. Although if you’re able to involve the viewers and donators then even better since the experience becomes unique to that particular stream. Speaking of which…
How Will Fans Participate?
Think to yourself, “Would I be interested in staying in this stream if it was someone else doing what I’m doing?”. If you’re answer is “no”, then you should probably consider personalizing your stream and involving your audience in unique ways.
There are many ways to involve your viewers and donators in events and by doing so you add the personal connection to your stream enable them to influence what’s going on. In general, one of the main draws to live streams is the ability for the audience to talk to and interact with the broadcaster. Those familiar with live streams done in the past are already familiar with this and know that it doesn’t need to be giveaways or prizes to be effective. One of my personal favorites is done by Games Done Quick leading up to the Super Metroid speedrun where donators can designate whether to Kill The Animals vs Save The Animals which affects the way the ending of the game is played.
Here are several ideas for you to use in your stream:
- Read off the names of people who have donated and thank them.
- Use the stream chat or a Twitter hashtag to answer questions from viewers.
- Perform an action every time total donation benchmarks are met.
- Perform an action every time certain values or minimum donations are given.
- Allow donators who donate certain minimums to play games with you online or join in on chat for a bit.
- Allow donators or chat to designate how the game is played/how content is created. (Effective in choice based games.)
- Allow donators or chat to designate which games are played from a pool/what content is created.
- Choose content to stream that directly allows donators/viewers to participate with you. (MMOs, MOBAs, etc.)
- Encourage viewers to create fan art of the event and show it on the live stream. (Also ask if you can share it out.)
- Have raffles for people who have donated to the event. (Set minimums level donations if you’d like to try and raise more money. Remember the average donation is around $10 USD.)
- Have raffles for people who are participating in the chat.
FYI: Games are currently being created which allow the audience to directly affect the broadcaster based on polls, specific chat commands, and other features. These features integrate directly with Twitch and allow the community to play along with the broadcaster, which makes streams more personal and unique.
When you take just a few of these options and combine them with the different ways to determine the content to stream, it becomes very easy to generate a unique experience. If you can figure out a way to cleverly tie even the audience interaction into your theme then even better. Regardless of the methods you choose, however, be sure to keep audience engagement in mind.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 6 – Creating An Information Page
One of the key issues that face charity live streams today is that there’s no way to locate when they’re happening unless you’re already a part of the community. The result of this until now has been that charity stream potential to raise money has been limited to the size and scope of one’s own network. However, by having a dedicated web page that’s specific to your event you allow it to be indexed by major search engines. Additionally, having a central information page for your event makes the promotion much easier by yourself and your fans. This is because your information page serves as the permanent hub of information, regardless of whether your event is in 2 weeks or 2 hours.
Benefits Of The CLS Website
When you search for current charity live streams going on today using any of the popular search engines, the number of useful results have been next to none, despite the fact that there are always, at minimum, 3-4 streams per weekend. As an information platform CLS was initially built to solve 3 problems on this front: lack of centralized event pages, lack of optimization of those pages for search engines, and lack of a central place to find events going on in the future. These problems are solved within the Promotion core of CLS’s benefits.
—Free Event Info Pages
After creating an account on www.charitylivestream.com you have the option of immediately submitting an event to the calendar. The submission form is an extensive, though largely optional, series of inputs to add the details of your event. The more information you provide about your event, the more easily it can be searched within the community calendar, (more on that below), and more importantly the more information you can provide to potential viewers. Do you have specific sponsors that need you to mention them? Covered. Need to make sure you add links for more details on the awesome charity your fundraising for? Got that too. Need a section to confirm your donations were recieved by the non-profit? Well, you get the point.
You can then use this page as the main link in all your promotional activities so you only need to update one page with all your information instead of changing things in multiple locations for updates. Social sharing buttons are already integrated into the event page so your community can help promote the event to their circles of friends. Finally, if you do need to make any last minute changes it’s a simple process to go in and modify the details.
—Optimizing For Search Engines
Another benefit of a CLS page is that it’s indexed for search engines to find. Additionally the Charity Live Stream domain name allows events to easily convey the type of fundraiser and boost it’s rank in search results, regardless of the name you choose for your event.
—Charity Stream Community Calendar
The biggest benefit by far of using CLS, though, is the Community Calendar. Although having your page indexed in search engines is definitely a good thing, it doesn’t solve the problem of not being able to find events unless you’re already a part of the community. Every event page created on Charity Live Stream is added into the master calendar which can be browsed by anyone visiting the site. Additionally, the calendar can be filtered by a wide variety of parameters based on the details submitted with the event.
This means that as the community grows everyone will be able to easily find upcoming events since CLS is the first site of it’s kind to implement an charity stream database, regardless of the platform used for broadcasting or donation collection.
Creating A Page With Your Own Site
Although I’ve built Charity Live Stream to allow anyone to create an event page that’s added to the community calendar, you can, and should, also create an information page for your event on your own website if you have one. The key issue is that many broadcasters don’t, but it’s easy enough to build one using free tools if you have time and dedication to figure things out. Although there are whole blogs just on website building, there are several key factors you’ll need to look into if you are creating a site of your own. If anyone’s interested in me covering this particular topic in more detail than below than let me know. I’m a marketer, not a technician, but I’m able to throw together a quick website, at low cost to free, and I might do as series of blog posts covering what I know.
There are several aspects to creating your own website for yourself or your charity group that you’ll need to take care of:
- Domain Name
One of the first things you need to do is snag a domain name for your site, the name you type in to the address bar when you want to go to a web site. The most obvious would be to make it the name of your group or organization. Ideally the best domain names are 12 characters or less with fewer being better. The shorter a name, the better since it’s easier for people to remember. (I break this rule for charitylivestream.com, but I’m going after SEO & recognition as THE place to find charity live streams of all types.)
You purchase the registration of domain names on a yearly basis. Most often you’ll want to register your domain name through the same company that you’re using for hosting (see below) since they’ll give you a package deal by throwing the registration for a year with your hosting package. Expect to pay between $10-$15 USD per year to keep your name and, as a personal recommendation, don’t let it go after you have it unless your dead positive you don’t want it anymore. Now that names are becoming more and more scarce, as you’ll find in your own search, there’s a moderate likelihood someone else will register it if you let it go.
- What Is Website Hosting
Before I go into how to get hosting for your site, here’s a brief lesson on what hosting is.
To those who don’t already know, the internet is made up of trillions (quadrillions?) of pages being hosted on computers all over the world called servers. These servers “host” the individual pages in file folders, just like you store documents, images, and anything else on your own computer, and make it publicly available for others to access. While it’s entirely possible to host the pages and files of a website off you’re own server, if you have the hardware, most people use Hosting Services to store the web files that make up their websites because it’s faster and easier to pay someone else to manage the hardware & software maintenance while freeing up time to focus on other things. The domain that you register “directs” the person who types in that name on a web browser to a particular file, in a folder, that is being hosted in a server, that is owned by a hosting company. Simple, right? But wait, there’s more.
After you resister your domain and have your hosting set up you’ll also be able to also create “sub-domains” which changes the www before a domain name with the text/number string of your choice. Since this sub-domain is treated as an entirely different address, you’re able to direct it to a completely different folder in your server. This is important because if you want to use different site systems (see below) for different functions (forums, test websites, etc) then you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the way that sub-domains and file management works with your hosting service. There’s just one final aspect to all this
The final component of our three part overview of website hosting are databases. Where hosted files determine the base content for web pages, databases store information that has been input into the website and that the website uses to pull information from. Virtually all of websites have databases tied to them since that’s where all the data from a site is stored for use. Whether it’s the content of a blog post, a comment on a forum, or the details of a profile that information is stored in the equivalent of multiple, integrated Excel spreadsheets. If anyone’s ever had the need to use Microsoft Access, then you’ve seen and witnesses a database structure before. These databases are hosted by a hosting company just like the folders and files.
- Getting Hosting For Your Website
Lets talk about where you get hosting for your website. There are dozens of hosting services to choose from and the pricing can vary based on the features you want and the quality of the hosting. (Many hosting providers will set “shared servers”, where multiple websites are hosted on one server, as their lowest tier offering. You can then pay to upgrade for better performance.) The sky’s the limit in terms of pricing with all the different bells and whistles, isn’t it always, but for a basic series of info pages you can usually find promo hosting offers with no extra features for as little as $1-2 USD per month with purchasing durations for up to 2-3 years with the domain name added in. That can give you, potentially, a website for three years for $36 to $72 USD, but once that time limit runs out prices can go up to a rough average of $8 USD per month.
If you’re really strapped for cash then there are webpage builders & hosting services which will let you create a sub-domain off of their site and add their branding, like Square Space, Weebly or WordPress, but allow the basic hosting for free. Depending on the size of your group and what you want to do, this may be good enough for what you need. As always, if all you’re looking for is a simple webpage for your event then you can create one for free with charitylivestream.com.
- Site System
Speaking of site builders, unless you’re knowledgeable on building websites from scratch, I’d recommend using a system like Square Space, Weebly, WordPress, Joomla, or another content management system to quickly build out the basic site for yourself or charity group. There are dozens of website builders and thousands of templates and plugins to make the look and feel of your site fit your tastes, but the key recommendation I’d give everyone is to ensure your site is mobile enabled. Outside of a work environment society is quickly approaching a point where people are spending more time on mobile phones, tablets, and other devices than laptops and PCs. CLS is mobile enabled and you should make sure that your site is also.
- Site Content
So you have your name, hosting provider, and website system. Now what do you put on the darn thing? The sky’s the limit depending on what your objective with the site is, but at minimum you should have a homepage that clearly explains who you are, what you do, why you do it, and what you want people to do on your site before they leave. You should also have a contact page with either contact information or a form for others to fill out to send you an e-mail. Finally, and obviously, you should have a page solely dedicated to the event you’re doing.
In terms of formating the pages themselves using visual elements like images and video helps to keep the a page interesting and breaking the format of the visuals into patterns that don’t repeat keep things visually dynamic. What I mean by this is to vary the number of columns used in different sections of the page as you scroll down it as well as mixing the positioning of text and images. Ex: if you have an image with text to the right for 2 sections (divs) in that row, then make sure your next section either has the text to the left with a different image on the right or you have your information in a different visual format like 3 columns of information. Do whatever you can to prevent visual repetition, and keep the user moving down the page.
Although I’ve tried to keep CLS as flexible as I can, having your own site gives you infinitely more freedom with look, feel, and features. Tech savvy individuals can achieve some amazing results that show off their creativity as well as describing what they to in the way that fits their personality. However, whether or not you use the CLS platform you should be sure to add all the details of your event to your specific site page. Using your own site as the core information page means that you’ll need to keep all the above details in mind, although if you have both then you’ll only boost the outreach for your event all the more.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 7 – Promoting The Stream
Once the information page is set up with all the details about your stream, you need to let people know that it’s happening. Although I plan on building Charity Live Stream into the go-to place to find charity streams, it’s still up to you to get the word out to as many people as possible that the event is going on. Not to worry though, if the rest of this document is any indication, because there are many tips, tricks, and strategies you can follow to boost your outreach, regardless of the size of your team.
Note: I come from a digital marketing background and much of the below strategies reflect that experience, focused into the charity live stream medium. You’re going to be learning a lot with you’re first few streams and through that you’ll end up building tools and strategies that work best for you. Please use the details below as a starting point, not an end all, for letting people know about your event.
If it’s your first charity stream, or if you’re just planning a very small event, much of this is probably overkill. I do plan on building tools to help solo streamers & small groups implement many of these strategies more easily on their own, but if you’re prepping for your first event just know that you should reach out to as many people as you can with the tools and methods you’re most comfortable with.
Marketing Process Overview
Any marketing process revolves around communicating what your doing, whether it’s putting on an event or selling something, to the audience that would be most interested in what you’re doing. The flow of your audience from the point they first hear about what you’re doing to the action you want them to take (watching your stream & ultimately donating to the charity) is called a “Conversion Funnel”; “Conversion” being the term for an action you want others to take and “Funnel” because as people move through the process only the most interested will advance to each step.
The full process should look something like this before your stream begins:
Multi-Channel Outreach –> Information Website –> Sharing Info Site Back Out To Those Channels –> Donating Early To The Event
The multi-channel outreach will be explained more below, but the objective before a stream starts is to get as many people sharing your event as possible, donating before it starts is even better.
The process during the stream should be much more direct:
Multi-Channel Outreach –> Charity Stream Page –> Donating During The Event
During the stream you want as few steps between your viewer and seeing your content. You’ll be encouraging people to donate during the stream and you’re broadcasting page will have links directly to the donation page.
Although briefly mentioned in Step 6, your information page serves as the center point of your process. It’s where all those with at least a passing interest in your event will go to learn more and it’s also the directional for where you want people to go next. Since charity live streams are time sensitive events, without an information page of some sort it’s difficult to have effective outreach and almost impossible to coordinate outreach between large groups. Since you’ve already created your info page it allows you to focus on the other two key elements of promoting a charity live stream: an integrated user flow and multi-channel outreach.
Integrated User Flow
The core principle behind an integrated user flow is that no matter what page the user and potential donator is on, they never need to use the Back button. To achieve this all the core pages (Outreach Channels, Information Page, Streaming Page, & Donation Page) must have buttons or links to each other. This allows easy navigation no matter where the visitor is to where they want to go next. It’s the kind of thing that can be easily overlooked, but prove to be a hassle when it’s not properly in place.
By building this web, users are can easily be directed to the donation page and back to the information page before an event and back to the stream page during the event. Additionally, if members of the community promote a page other than the info page, like the donation page, it allows new visitors to easily navigate over to the information page & learn more about the stream.
Multi-channel outreach is exactly as it sounds, taking your promotional message, in this case encouraging everyone to visit your info page, and getting that message out on as many “channels” as possible. A channel would be any avenue you can use to reach out to your community, whether it’s an e-mail to people who may follow your blog or posts on a social media account like twitter or facebook.
A well run marketing department of a large company will have the resources to successfully run promotions on multiple avenues, all providing unique and relevant content. Most of us don’t have those kinds of resources and so we need to work smarter in order to get the most exposure for the least amount of work. To do this the promotion for your stream should follow a simple 3 step process: Knowing Your Community, Choosing Your Channel, and Building A Campaign.
—Knowing Your Community
The first step of being able to promote your charity stream is understanding who it is that you want to promote it to. Obviously the first group would be your friends, fans, and community. If you have a large community then outreach is easier since all you need to do is announce what you’re doing to them through the normal channels you already use.
Next you should take a look at the content of the stream that you’re going to do. What makes it special and which groups would be interested in watching you? Try to be objective and look at your content from every angle. Where do any possible interests overlap, who are the people who make those interests publicly known, and how do you reach out to them are all key questions that you should think about or do some quick looking in to.
Based off of your knowledge of your community and your own interests, you and a friend decide to play Super Mario World for the SNES to raise money for Ablegamers.
With this as the starting point, let’s examine all the different types of groups you could reach out to that might be more interested in your content than others:
Based on Super Mario World
- Fans of Mario games
- Fans of SNES Titles
- Fans of Nintendo
- Fans of 2D/3D Platformers
Based on AbleGamers
- Members of the organization
- Those who have broadcasted charity live streams for them in the past
- Those who have participated in past charity live streams as support (chat mods, promoters, community members, etc)
- Those who have posted about them on social media
- Those who have written articles/blogged about them
- Individuals who have made the cause, not necessarily AbleGamers specifically, a priority for themselves
Thinking More Out Of The Box
- Those who have done Mario charity live streams in the past
- Those who create their own custom levels of Super Mario World (All Kinds)
- Those who create & play “Rage Quit” & extreme difficulty Mario type platformers
- Let’s Players of Mario & Nintendo Titles
- Those who create chiptunes & video game inspired music
- Artists who have made creations based off of the Mario Franchise (Digital Art, Physical Art like Keychains, etc.)
- Speedrunners of Super Mario World and other Mario titles
- Mario & Nintendo character cosplayers
- Game developers of indie 2D platformers
Not even taking your existing community into account these are just a few types of people, off the top of my head, who may be interested. Although it doesn’t take your personal commentary style or existing community into account, it’s my guess that any and all of these groups would either be willing to watch your charity live stream, spread the word about it, donate, or all three. Also, with the Out of the Box suggestions, all these types of groups might be interested in your charity stream even if they’re not focused on Mario specifically. That’s the beauty of the gaming community. Our love of games bleeds over into our other endeavors and even if someone doesn’t specifically identify themselves with a particular game or genre, that doesn’t mean they’re not a fan.
Regardless of the content you intend to broadcast and the audiences you feel might be interested, each of these communities can be reached out to. Often in multiple ways.
—Choosing Your Outreach Channels
People love to communicate and in today’s world there are thousands of ways to do it. There are an uncountable number of specific outlets to choose from for connecting with each type of group who might be interested in your stream, but considering that the medium is fully digital and you are probably willing to spend more time than money on outreach it allows us to narrow the types of channels into some select types:
- Social Media (Choose the ones those you want to reach out to use the most. Facebook and Twitter are usually safe due to size, but ones with specific focuses can be more effective.)
- E-mail (If you have an e-mail list due to a blog or something else, send out and see if people are interested.)
- Blog (Through your own website or a 3rd party like Tumblr)
- Forums (Whatever content you decide to do, there’s most likely a forum full of people who enjoy that type)
- Video (Everyone loves video and considering your live streaming it’s good to create a short one announcing your stream for Youtube, Vimeo or whatever you’re comfortable with)
- Press Release (A to-the-point account of what your doing and why it matters to communicate to journalists & bloggers write one up and start outreach at least 2-3 weeks in advanced)
- News Articles (Articles that others write about your event for their readers. Journalists usually work with a 2 week buffer for stories, hence reaching out early if you want coverage)
- Sponsorships (Reach out to businesses and ask if they’d be interested in contributing to the event. Most will happily contribute money or product for the tax write off as long as they get marketing promotion in exchange)
- Cross Promotion (Whether with businesses, the non-profits, or other groups it’s a potentially great way to reach new communities. Contact me if you’re interested in a cross promotion with CLS!)
Before you do any promotion you need to figure out which channels are the best ones to reach your audience and which ones you yourself are comfortable using. Depending on how much time you have before your stream and how prepared you are will determine how much outreach you can do. Thus, you always need to work smarter than you work hard. Pick the channels that you understand the best for your first streams and use the knowledge build from prior events to expand to more channels with future events.
—Building Your Promo Campaign (Before Event)
So you know the communities who would be interested in your event and have a collection of the websites sites (channels) you can reach them at. Now you need to figure out what to say about your charity stream and how to best get that message onto all the sites you’ve found.
Different people will have different strategies, but I’m a big fan of creating a single, long form document thoroughly explaining what the event is, who is involved (broadcasters, support, non-profits, sponsors), how people can view it & donate, and where they can learn more. This master document will serve as a Media/Press Kit for any news/blogger inquiries as well as the content for your Information Page (CLS & your website).
After this master document is created you can then copy/paste bits and pieces off of it to create all your other outreach. This allows you to quickly create posts and updates for a wide variety of websites. After the first few streams you should have enough content to build templates for the channels you’ve used before, making it an even faster process.
An add-on to this strategy is automating some of your outreach so you don’t need to type up every post in real time. There isn’t a lot of variance that can be found with telling people about an upcoming event, so the fact that you’re automating those types of posts isn’t a big deal, but you should be making sure that there are other types of posts mixed in as well that are more unique. If there’s nothing but a wall of automated event promotion on your feed, then it doesn’t look like you’re engaging your audience. You can get away with it during an event because you’re live and raising money for charity, but before an event it’s a sloppiness that’s easily avoided.
Note: If you support to CLS then you also have access to tools that will help you automatically create content specific to your event. This content can be copy/pasted into the post manager of choice for you to add images & additional details before scheduling.
—Building Your Promo Campaign (During Event)
As I mentioned in the first part of this step, once your event starts your marketing priorities should shift from promoting your information pages to promoting the event itself. Regardless of the size of your team, you should ensure that there’s a minimum level of promotion while the event is happening. The best way it to schedule posts ahead of time that direct to the broadcast channel that go out every 10-20 minutes via Twitter along with posts for time based milestones (first hour, quarter through, half through, 3 quarters through, final hour) on other channels.
This way you can focus all your time on interacting with your community while the stream is going on (answering questions, running contests, inviting people on a one-on-one basis). Thus, even your promotion individual’s or teams’s time during the stream can be more focused on actual interactions with people.
There are hundreds of resources that discuss how to optimize marketing on various channels as well as overall strategies that extend beyond this brief advice. Since this How To guide is already massive I won’t go into specific strategies here. However, if you’re reading through all this (thank you by the way) and are hungry for even more knowledge, then check out my Marketing Article Collection that I’ve built for my own personal use and uploaded to CLS to help the community.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 8 – Broadcasting The Event
So you’ve successfully done everything above, you have all your information in your info page, you’ve been promoting your event to all relevant channels, and you’re pumped to raise some money for charity, so how will you go about doing it? What tools or services allow you to stream online?
The answer is A LOT. In recent years many companies have been jumping on the band wagon for offering services that allow gamers to stream their content to broadcasting hosts. I’ve compiled a list of services you can use to stream content online. As with broadcasting hosts and donation platforms, the list below is just a collection and not review or judgement on quality of which companies are the best.
Note: Some of these systems work in tandem with one another, but the vast majority are single service solutions. Additionally, not all of them work with all broadcasting hosts. I’ve added another list to cover that further down.
- Open Broadcaster Software (OBS) – https://obsproject.com/
- XSplit – https://www.xsplit.com/
- Wirecast – http://www.telestream.net/wirecast/
- Overwolf – http://www.overwolf.com/apps/Entertainment/Overwolf_Twitch
- FFSplit – http://www.ffsplit.com/
- ElGato – https://www.elgato.com/en/gaming
- Roxio – http://www.roxio.com/enu/products/game-capture/hd-pro/overview.html
- Evolve – https://www.evolvehq.com/welcome
- GEForce ShadowPlay – http://www.geforce.co.uk/geforce-experience/shadowplay
- UPlay – https://uplay.ubi.com/
- Origin – https://www.origin.com/en-us/news/whats-coming-in-the-next-origin-update
- Raptr – http://raptr.com/
- Playstation 4 Game Console – http://manuals.playstation.net/document/en/ps4/share/broadcast.html
- XBOX One Game Console – http://www.xbox.com/en-US/entertainment/xbox-one/live-apps/twitch
If you’re a representative for one of these companies and you’d like to add additional detailing for your listing then please contact me.
If you’re looking for a software that ties directly to a specific broadcasting host, then I’ve added the information I’ve been able to find below. The links will take you to the help sections that cover the systems that hook up to the broadcasting host. For mobile broadcasters I’ve added links to their help sections since usually the only way to broadcast is through their system:
- Twitch – http://help.twitch.tv/customer/portal/topics/301257-getting-started/articles?page=1
- Picarto – https://picarto.tv/live/faq.php
- Hitbox – http://help.hitbox.tv/customer/portal/topics/775336-livestreaming/articles
- YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/yt/playbook/live.html
- Livestream – http://help.livestream.com/
- USTREAM – http://www.ustream.tv/information/resource-center/getting-started
- Meerkat – www.meerkatapp.co (Built In Mobile Streaming)
- Periscope – https://help.periscope.tv/hc/en-us
- YouNow – https://younow.zendesk.com/categories/20033867-Frequently-Asked-Questions
[Disclosure – As of this writing, I personally use the Elgato Game Capture HD to record video and stream content. This was purchased on Amazon for, if I’m remembering correctly, $135 with the cost being split between my brother and I. We’re both very satisfied with it since it both records and broadcasts what ever’s on the computer AND syncs up the audio commentary automatically, although it’s not without a few flaws.
I am not at the Partner level with any broadcasting hosts as of yet. Again, this How To Guide isn’t a review of these services, just a listing, so be sure to pick the one that fits your needs the best.]
Recommendations For Charity Stream Management
Test to make sure everything works ahead of time. Test to make sure everything works ahead of time. TEST TO MAKE SURE EVERYTHING WORKS AHEAD OF TIME!
Now that that’s out of the way, most of the advice for managing a charity live stream overlaps with running a regular stream or the advice found in Step 5. However one aspect that’s different is that you need to be reminding everyone why you’re doing the charity stream, who you’re doing it for, and how viewers can donate. In addition to reminding everyone verbally, I’d recommend every 20-30 minutes so new people always get a heads up before too long.
Additionally you should take short breaks at regular intervals, I recommend every hour, to refresh yourself, spread the word on social media, and give your viewers an opportunity to donate or grab a quick snack if they’ve been actively participating.
Finally, don’t be shy about asking people to share the stream during the event. You may have already automated a base level of outreach, but your goal is to raise money so that the charity of your choice can help others who need it. By asking your audience to help spread the word you’re helping to make them a part of the fundraiser and, when you’re raising money for charity, even one person can make a difference. Thus, it’s on you to enable and encourage people to do so.
To make everything easier you should also set up a chat bot if it’s available for your broadcasting host. They’ll save your mods, and yourself if you’re doing a solo broadcast, a lot time by setting up some basic messages. In addition to the basic messages that describe your channel and rules for chat, you’ll also want to have one that explains why you’re doing the charity stream, who you’re doing it for, and how viewers can donate. Yes I did repeat myself from earlier. Yes it’s that important so go back and read all this again. I’ll wait… Good. The reason is because if you’re having a fantastic stream but don’t regularly let your viewers know you’re raising money for charity, then what’s the point?
Here are a few bots you can use for Twitch I was able to find. I’ve used Moobot in the past, but there seems to be good things said for all of them.
- Moobot – http://twitch.moobot.tv/
- Nightbot – http://www.nightbot.tv/
- Xanbot – https://www.reddit.com/r/Twitch/comments/2dkro7/a_detailed_guide_on_howto_configure_and_operate/
- Deepbot – http://deepbot.deep.sg/
For more information on bots in general and the first three on this list I’ve found this overview page helpful: http://twitchtips.com/chat-moderation-bots/
Be Sure To Take Care Of Yourself!
One thing to always keep in mind, whether you’re broadcasting or part of the support, during a stream is to stay aware of your own physical condition. It’s easy to get focused with the game or the stream and neglect essentials of keeping yourself going. Don’t do that! There’s no reason to, especially since you’re probably streaming from the comfort of you’re own home. When you’re in the middle of a broadcast it’s common to feel that you’re letting your viewership down by pausing the stream for a few minutes to go take care of things, especially if you’re doing a solo stream or are the only streamer on shift. However, when you look at it from the other side, would you be overly offended if the person you were watching took a few minutes to run to the bathroom or grab a snack? Probably not. And that’s the beauty of this community, both the broadcasters and the viewers themselves, as well as the medium of live streaming in general.
That being said, here are some basic preparations I’d recommend putting in place based on my own experience and observations to reduce down time while doing a charity stream:
- First and foremost, if there’s ever something seriously wrong, inform your audience that you’re pausing the stream and take care of it. Although all the recommendations below are based around optimizing up time and content throughout the stream if there’s ever something important that requires you attention don’t be afraid to do what you need to do.
- Don’t Panic. No one’s going to think ill of you if you need to squash an emergency, but always let people know if you’re going to go, that way they can inform others who newly join the stream that you’re just on break via the chat. That’s the point of having a community.
- Stream with a friend. Whether they’re physically there with you or just on chat, having someone working with you helps in multiple ways.
- Always have a drink nearby, preferably in a container with a sealed top in case of accidents.
- Regardless of you’re drink of choice, be sure you have a tumbler, or bottle, of water with you. (Especially if you’re a broadcaster.) Chances are you’re going to be doing a lot of talking during the stream and there’s nothing worse than hitting the 5-6 hour mark and having your voice start to give out.
- Have snacks with you while you stream. Your regular fair of salty snacks are okay, remember the water, but also have something of substance too. (Nuts, fruit, granola, etc.) It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon, literally with a 24 hour stream, so you’ll need to make sure you’re fueling yourself up for the long term.
- Prepare your lunch/dinner meals ahead of time, or order out for food, to make sure you eat something substantial without having to take an extended break to prepare it. If you are able to talk with a local restaurant and let them know you need the food for a charity fundraiser you may even be able to get the meal at a discount in exchange for giving them some promotion. A smaller price to pay for the food that keeps you focused on helping non-profits is always a good thing.
- Set a timer and at fixed intervals take short breaks, even if they’re just 2-3 minutes. I’d recommend doing this every hour. Use this time to look away from the screen, stand up, stretch, throw some snacks in your belly, get a drink and run to the bathroom if you feel the need.
- In order to keep the content for the stream going, use these breaks to remind everyone about the cause your raising money for and encourage people to go and donate. Sometimes viewers will be so engaged in the stream that they don’t want to leave because they don’t want to miss anything. By having fixed times where you pause what your doing, you give them the opportunity to donate or run and take a break themselves. Remember, live streams are a community of people coming together for a fun time and no one wants to miss out on the party.
- Go to the bathroom before you start and use the fixed interval break times to run out and use it if it’s been a while. Being distracted by mother nature’s call in the middle of an action packed segment of a game or the middle of a conversation with your fans isn’t fun. You control the pace of the stream. Take advantage of that fact.
- Finally, HAVE FUN! You’re doing something you love in order to raise money to help those in need. If things start to feel like a chore than switch things up play a new game, put on a different song, have a spontaneous Q&A with your viewers, offer up a contest, whatever you feel like. People are watching the stream to see and engage with you, so engage back and enjoy yourself. If you’re not having fun they they won’t be either.
Step 9 – Thank You Message & Verifying The Donations
The final step of any charity live stream is a follow up post or video where you verify the final amount donated to charity and thank the community one final time for the donations to your stream. Depending on the donation platform and way you run your stream this may be as simple as posting the confirmation letter, minus your sensitive personal information of course, or calling the non-profit and asking them to verify that their check was received. Remember, this doesn’t need to be a big letter or promotional item from the charity, you can create any big follow-up materials on your own. All you need is their verification that you did what you did, even if it’s just a short tweet from their official Twitter account.
It’s important that you take the time to share the public verification that the donations were received by the non-profit. Whether your event was big or small, a huge success or not, the key point is having solid proof that you did what you said you did. You’re own community may know and trust you, but if there are people who stumbled on your event who weren’t fans before, then it’s especially important that you start building that trust with them through transparency. It also gives you a hard record others can verify that you’ve actually done what you say you’ve done, which is very useful if you want to share your past accomplishments while communicating with businesses for sponsorships at future events or going after that job you really want.
How CLS Helps
To help facilitate this, every event on Charity Live Stream has a field for you to post the amount raised and a public link confirming the donation receipt. Simply go to your events management section and click Edit to update your event page after you get your confirmation. This way your event page remains useful and relevant even after your event has ended.
^ Back To Top ^
Step 10 – Strategies For Your Next Stream
It’s always a good idea to take a look at completed streams to see what worked, what was successful, and most importantly what you can do differently to make your event a bigger success. Many times the first streams people are involved with aren’t successes, but as long as you take each stream as a learning opportunity then you will gain success over time.
Always remember that it’s your community that drives the success of your stream. If you raise $5, $500, or $50,000 it’s all because someone watching you believed in your cause enough to open their wallets and contribute to your streams success. Never forget that and always be grateful to the community that supports you. At the end of the day you’re just one person alone in a room talking to a piece of hardware, but you never know who’s on the other side that you’re inspiring to do good themselves.
In conclusion biggest piece of advice I can give for anyone is to be passionate about what you’re doing, constantly try and learn new things, and never let yourself get discouraged. I’m just one guy working on my own to help the community that’s inspired me to do good, but what sets me apart is the perseverance to never give up. Imagine the difference we can make if more of us do the same thing.
I hope this guide has been helpful in shedding light and answering questions on how to run a charity live stream. If you did find it useful then please share it & CLS with the community, create an account with Charity Live Stream at www.charitylivestream.com, make use of our free features, and support the site for additional tools & benefits.
I’ll leave you all with the quote that set me off on this journey. Thank you all for reading this through, I hope you’re all doing well, and shoot me a message if you feel like it.
~Mark “Clive” Svetik
Founder of Charity Live Stream
mark @ charitylivestream.com
“If you want to do anything, anything at all, no matter how hard it may seem to do it, the only thing you have to do is start.” ~ Mark Fischbach “Pursuit of Happiness”