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How to Go Live on Instagram Live

Sep 08, 2018

How to Go Live on Instagram Live

Note:  This article is part 2 of an 11 part series entitled 'Getting Started with Instagram Live' that will include 11 YouTube videos, 11 blog posts, and more!  Be sure to sign up for my free VIP email membership and receive a free PDF entitled '50 Instagram Live Video Tips' for 50 awesome Instagram Live video tips!

Also note that you can jump down to the bottom of this blog post to see a YouTube video I made on this topic that I think you'll like!

Going live on Instagram Live is so easy that anyone with a smart phone or tablet will have no problem going live.

Before I teach you how to go live on Instagram Live (which you can jump to below), I think it's important to go over some Instagram Live requirements, as well as what I call "necessary luxuries."

Instagram Live Requirements

The requirements are simple:  You 1) need a smart phone and/or tablet with the Instagram app installed, and 2) a strong cellular or wifi signal.  

That’s it.

Oh, you need one more thing:  3) the will to go live.

The reason I even mention number 3 is that so many people I encounter are terrified of going live.  The same objections are used time and time again. Objections such as:

  • I don’t have anything / don’t know what to say
  • Nobody wants to hear my message
  • I’ve never gone live before
  • I’m not trained to go live

While these objections are not nonsense - they are nonsense.

You just have to hit the button and go live.  Do it several times over and you’ll realize that all of these fears are unfounded.

Instagram Live Required Luxuries

In addition to having a device with Instagram installed, a strong signal, and the will to go live and have a discussion, there are some ‘required luxuries’ that make going live on Instagram so much more professional.

Mini Tripods and Windshield Mounts

The first ‘required luxury’ is to have a mini tripod.  This is so you can sit back from your phone or mobile device and not hold it.  And if you are walking and talking, you still use the mobile tripod to put some distance between you and your phone.

The mini tripod also stabilizes the mobile device, whether you are sitting down and putting the phone on the table or holding the phone and walking down the street.  Nothing is worse than a jittery, wobbly broadcast.

And those who want to pass on the mini tripod and instead prop the phone or tablet against a stack of canned vegetables are going to find that there are all sorts of problems that go along with that:

  • Poor positioning
  • Unstable surface
  • Terribly uncustomizable

Arkon makes my favorite mini tripod and you can find it here in the Sue B. Zimmerman package.  I use this tripod whether I’m going to set it on the table or I’m going to do a live walk and talk.  This tripod is perfect for all of the above.

Arkon also makes a great windshield mount for live streaming in the car.  It's called the RoadVise Mount.  It can be found at that link, and it’s the best-built windshield mount I’ve ever used, and I’ve tried a lot of them.

For both of the above Arkon accessories, if you use the coupon code TODDLIVE you'll receive a nice discount - at the time of this writing I think it's 20%, which is awesome!

Note:  Do not live stream and drive.  People hate it and it’s terribly dangerous.  In fact, people dislike it so much that many people will actually unfriend you and cease contact with you once you’ve been warned and you continue to do it.

That being said, live stream all you want while your car is parked and you are not driving.  

Oddly enough, some people get terribly butthurt when people live stream from a parked car.  That’s ridiculous.

Audio Input

Sometimes you can get away with the built-in microphones on your mobile device.  Sometimes, you can’t.

I tend to use the onboard phone or tablet mic when I’m doing a walk-and-talk, broadcasting from a car using my windshield mount, and things like that.

But if I’m sitting in a public space such as a coffee shop for restaurant, or even if I’m sitting in my home studio, I like using some audio tech, even if it is just the simple headset with a microphone.

For the beginner, I recommend using the onboard mics or the headset that came with your mobile device.  There is no reason to use anything more when you are starting out.

As you get more advanced, there are plenty of audio input options, such as wired or wireless lavalier mics (I use the Rode smartlav+ lavalier mic), shotgun mics (I like the Rode VideoMic Me Directional Microphone for Smart Phones - and you'll likely need this adapter if you use it with a newer smart phone - Apple 3.55mm to Lightning Adapter) , or even what I do, where I’m running a professional microphone through a compressor, a mixer, and on to my mobile device (when I’m broadcasting from my studio).

People love good audio.  There is no excuse to having poor audio in a live video broadcast, no matter what platform you are using.

How to Go Live on Instagram Live

To go live on Instagram Live, you follow these steps:

  • Open your Instagram App.
  • At the top left corner, you will see a camera icon.  Press that.
  • On the next screen at the bottom, it defaults to “Normal.”  See that the word “Live” is directly to the left. Touch the word “Live.”
  • Use the circular arrows at the bottom left to point the camera at or away from you. 
  • Once you have chosen the desired camera orientation, touch the button that says “Start Live Video.”  Your video will start immediately.

Now you can talk to your audience and have a great time!

You're All Set!

Until Instagram Live showed up, going live was never so easy.  Sure, Periscope wasn’t that difficult either, but there is a lot more power at your fingertips with Instagram than Periscope ever had.  

Feel free to comment below with any questions you might have, and be sure to download my FREE PDF entitled 50 Instagram Live Video Tips.

You can also find me on Instagram, as well as YouTube.  Oh, and before I forget, you can check out my daily Instagram marketing podcast ‘Grammer School on iTunes.

My series on ‘Getting Started with Instagram Live’ has 9 more parts coming up in the coming weeks, so be sure to subscribe to my email list to know when the blog posts and YouTube videos make their way online!

Part 1:  What is Instagram Live, and How Can Entrepreneurs Use It?

Part 2:  How to Go Live on Instagram Live

Part 3:  How to Bring a Guest Into Your Instagram Live Video


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