When the COVID-19 pandemic drastically changed life last year, technology became an even more important asset for conducting business, keeping up with friends and family and — in some cases — allowing couples to share their wedding days with virtual guests.
And for the time being, livestreaming remains a necessary tool for many brides and grooms. This makes it one more wedding detail to plan for, so for any couple considering it, we’ve put together some pointers:
Decide on DIY (or not)
As with many wedding-related services, livestreaming can be done at a basic level on a shoestring budget or can be a more professional investment.
For couples who decide to go with the bare minimum, a phone placed on a tripod (or simply held by someone in attendance) can do the trick. On the other end of the spectrum are specialized videographers with a skill set specifically for livestreaming. And in the middle are other wedding professionals such as photographers, videographers and DJs who have developed some level of livestreaming expertise as the demand for the service has grown.
Budget may be the deciding factor for many couples when it comes to choosing one of the above methods. But other things brides and grooms also should consider are what level of video and audio quality they hope for, as well as how hands-on (or off) they want to be with this particular task on their wedding day.
Pick a platform
From Facebook and Instagram to Vimeo and YouTube to Zoom and Skype — and beyond — the options for exactly how to deliver a livestream are abundant. A couple things to keep in mind when choosing one include any time or participant limits the service enforces, as well as ease of use, especially for any guests who aren’t particularly tech savvy.
It’s also worth noting that some services have sprung up specially for weddings and offer an extra tier of online amenities for couples who want their streaming to be as pretty and polished as their in-person wedding. LoveStream, for example, creates a custom website to house the stream, remotely switches between multiple filming devices to showcase different angles on the event and is accessible to guests through a dedicated URL.
Preparation makes perfect
This means ensuring a reliable internet connection for the streaming and providing guests with clear instructions for accessing it. It’s also important to check with the ceremony venue about any filming guidelines. Some churches, for example, have stipulations on where cameras can be placed. Also coordinate with the photographer, videographer and any other vendors whose work might be impacted by the streaming.
For anyone taking the DIY approach, it might also be beneficial to do a trial run by livestreaming the wedding rehearsal. Even if no guests are invited to that viewing, filming it could offer a way to work out any bugs and to ensure smooth sailing when it comes to sharing the real show.