facebook live vs youtube live

Facebook Live vs. YouTube Live: Which is the Better Option for Church Services

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Many churches are turning to live streaming services like Facebook Live and YouTube in order to reach a wider audience. The question that needs answering is: which service is better? It’s hard to say definitively, but there are some clear advantages and disadvantages of each. In this blog post, we will discuss the pros and cons of both services so you can make an informed decision about how best to utilize them for your church.

Facebook Live for churches

Facebook Live

Why you should be using Facebook live

First of all, Facebook Live is free. You don’t have to spend any money in order to use it. If you are on a tight budget at your church, this is great news for you!

Second, when done right, live streaming can be engaging and fun for your audience. When they see that the speaker or worship leader they’re used to seeing in person is actually speaking right into their screen, they may find it more exciting and feel connected even though the worship leader or speaker isn’t physically there.

Finally, Facebook has a wider reach than YouTube does at this point. It’s important for your church to have as many people watching your live stream as possible so you can reach as many people as possible. While YouTube can reach most of the world, Facebook Live has a wider base right now, especially those who you can target in your local community.

How to set up a Facebook live event

To set up live streaming on Facebook, follow these steps:

  1. Go to your page’s timeline and click “Publish” in the top right corner.
  2. Click “Live Video”.
  3. From there you can write a description of what you’re going to talk about during your church service or event. You’ll also want to upload a photo and set the privacy to public.
  4. Once you’re ready, click “Go Live” at the top right of your screen. You’ll be able to see if anyone is watching live in real-time.

What equipment is needed for a successful broadcast?

At a minimum, you will need a smartphone with a good camera. It’s also helpful to have a tripod for your phone so it doesn’t shake while you’re filming.

I recommend you invest in a good camcorder with clean HDMI output and plug it into a computer to start live streaming your event. This is the best way you can ensure high-quality video with good audio, but this also requires extra equipment and more time before your service starts in order for everything to be set up properly.

Best practices for live streaming on Facebook live 

A few best practices that I recommend are to have a powerful introduction. Use quality graphics for the beginning of your live stream.

Consider asking your audience members questions during a Q&A segment of the service so they can interact with you and respond back at home, and give them time to chat after church is over.

Lastly, make sure you know what your final video will look like before live streaming. A great way to do this is by doing a test run and playing it back before the service so everyone knows exactly how it’s going to turn out.

Tips and tricks for success with your broadcasts

Here are some tips and tricks that can help you be successful when broadcasting your church service on Facebook live:

Make sure to interact with comments during the broadcast. You don’t want people feeling like they’re watching a one-sided video where no one is responding back to them. Responding to comments will make viewers feel included in what’s happening.

Encourage your audience to post pictures from home during the service. This will make them feel like they’re a part of what’s going on and it can add some great color to the comment section when you have people posting photos in real-time.

FAQs about using Facebook Live for your church

How long should my videos be?

The best length for a Facebook Live video is somewhere between 20-40 minutes. If it’s too short, people won’t watch to the end, and if it’s longer than 40 minutes then you risk losing their interest.  It all depends on what kind of material you’re talking about and how patient your audience is.

What’s the best time to broadcast?

The golden hour for Facebook Live videos is between 12:00 p.m. and about 11:00 p.m., so consider broadcasting during this period of time if you can, especially on Sundays when people are in front of their screens all day long!  However, keep in mind that the best time for you will depend on your location, whether that’s in the US or abroad.

Is there a way to share my video later?

Yes! You can save Facebook live videos by clicking “Save Video” at the bottom of the screen once it’s done live streaming.  This is great if you want to go back and edit the video at a later time.

When is the best day to stream a live video of my church service?  Which days of the week work best with Facebook live?

With a live stream, it is best that you stream it on the day you are having the event. The reason for this is that you want your viewers to be able to tune in on the day of.  If they have to wait until later, it may become more difficult because they might forget or lose interest if too much time has passed.

Is there a limit on how many people can watch my broadcast?

No, there is no limit on how many people can watch your broadcast, which makes it a great way to reach out to the masses.

Will my live videos be saved?

Yes, Facebook live videos are saved so you can share them later with anyone who missed the original stream or wants to check up on something they may have missed.

What if something goes wrong?  How do I handle mistakes during a live stream?

If you mess up or make a mistake don’t worry!  You can edit out mistakes if you want to re-do something or leave it there for authenticity.

Youtube live for churches

YouTube Live

What is YouTube Live and how does it work?

YouTube live streaming is a new feature that allows you to broadcast directly from your computer or phone.  It will automatically be uploaded and saved as soon as the stream has ended, so there’s no need for an audience to save it themselves.  Plus, since YouTube loves video content (who doesn’t?), everything hosted on their site is optimized for search engines.

How to set up a YouTube channel for your church

If you or your church doesn’t already have a YouTube channel, this is the first thing that needs to be done before you can begin live streaming.  It’s actually very easy and it only takes about five minutes!

To set up a YouTube channel you need to have a Google account, which is free to create.  Then you need to sign in to your account on YouTube and select “My Channel” at the top of the screen.  From there you will see a box that asks for your channel name, description, category, language setting, and whether or not it’s unlisted (private).

What equipment you’ll need to start streaming live videos from your church

Just as with Facebook Live, the equipment you will need for YouTube live is similar. You can be as basic as just using a smartphone, or as complex as using a complete live streaming system.

The benefits of using YouTube Live video streaming for churches 

YouTube is great because you can instantly reach anyone who has an internet connection, which makes it a very useful tool for churches.  You don’t even have to do any editing if you don’t want to!

The benefit of using YouTube live for your church is that it will be easier to get your message out there.  It is free and allows you to reach people all over the world. It is designed for worldwide reach whereas Facebook is designed for community reach.

Tips on what types of content you should be posting on your channel

On a church’s YouTube channel, it is best to have a variety of content.  You don’t want everything to be about the same topic because then you will lose your audience and won’t reach as many people with your message.

For example, if you are hosting an event at your church that day where everyone can come together for a service, it would be best to stream that.  However, if you are hosting a different event the next day or week then upload some other videos about what is going on at your church for those days.

FAQs about using YouTube Live for your church

Do I need to make my channel public?

You do not need to make your YouTube channel public, which means it will be private and only accessible by you.  However, if you want others in the church or community to know about your page then having an open profile would be best.

What happens after a live stream is over?

After the live stream is over it will automatically be uploaded to your YouTube channel.  You can then access this video at any time and do whatever you want with it, even edit!

Can I post pre-recorded content?

Yes, there is no rule about how long a video must be before you are able to upload it to your channel.  You can post any content you want and as much of it as you want!

What do I need to start a live stream?

All that is needed for YouTube Live is just a computer or smartphone with the right software downloaded onto them, which will vary depending on what kind of equipment you’re using.    If you are using a smartphone then all that is needed is the YouTube app!

Pros and Cons

Pros and cons for each platform

Pros of Facebook Live

With Facebook, you are able to reach your friends and family easily.  It also allows for video responses so if someone comments on the post then they can talk back with their own videos or pictures.

Cons of Facebook Live

The only downside of Facebook Live is that it will not reach as many people for your message.  It is best to use this when you want to interact with the people who are already in your local community or church, rather than trying to broadcast worldwide and gain new viewers/listeners

Pros Of YouTube Live

The main benefit of YouTube Live is that you can reach a large audience.  You also have the ability to go back and edit your videos if needed or add subtitles/closed captioning in different languages for those who speak differently!

Cons Of YouTube Live

The only downside of YouTube is that it isn’t as personal or customizable.  With Facebook, you can send a private message to your friends and family if they are online at the time. With Facebook, you can also target your local community so you can attract new visitors to your church.

Better options

Which is the better option for church services – Facebook Live or YouTube

1. Facebook Live is an excellent way to reach people who are not attending church

 It will allow you to interact with them on a personal level, which can be hard when trying to broadcast worldwide or gain new viewers!

2. YouTube has more potential for reaching people in other countries

If sheer numbers are important to you then YouTube Live is better at gaining more followers, whereas Facebook will only allow you to reach the people who are already in your local community.

3. Both platforms offer the opportunity to share sermons with others, but only YouTube offers live chat and comment sections

You can comment and talk to others during the live video, which is great if you want an interactive service.  On Facebook posts, there are no chat messages just comments for those who cannot attend in person.

4. It’s important to choose a platform that your congregation feels comfortable using 

Some people may prefer Facebook with its personal connection or YouTube which has a wider range of live streaming options.  It is most important that your church feels comfortable and enjoys the service, so they will continue to attend more regularly! Ask them which one they use more.

5. You can also use both platforms depending on what type of sermon you want to share with others this week (i.e., one Sunday may be better suited for Facebook Live while another may work better for YouTube)

It is good to have a variety of options and you never know what will work best for your church, so it’s important that both are available!

6. Consider how often there are services at your church when making this decision because it could affect which platform works best for you 

Weekly services could be a better fit for YouTube Live, whereas less frequent church services may work best on Facebook. Or vice versa. Maybe a best of highlights video would work on YouTube video and the live stream on Facebook.


Tips on how to use each platform effectively 

Tips For Using Facebook Live

Before using Facebook Live, make sure you have a good internet connection.

Your video will upload quickly and have minimal lag time.  

Keep your camera steady by holding it with both hands or placing it on a tripod.

This is especially important if you are trying to attract new members. You want the best quality video possible!

If your sermon has a lot of graphics or visuals in it, consider creating some slides for Facebook Live.  Adding pictures and videos will make the service more interactive and engaging for those who cannot attend in person.

Have a plan for your Facebook Live

If your sermon has a lot of graphics or visuals in it, consider creating some slides for Facebook Live.  Adding pictures and videos will make the service more interactive and engaging for those who cannot attend in person.

Think about what you want to say and how you want to say it.

Have a script to keep you on track and make sure that your message is clearly communicated.  You should also know how long each part of the service will be so that you can adjust accordingly if there are any delays.

Make sure the lighting in the room is good enough so that people can see your face clearly.

Your lighting should be bright but not so bright that it creates shadows on your face.

If there is too much light, consider asking someone to turn off the lights behind you. This will create a better picture quality for viewers who are watching later!

Be careful not to use copyrighted music, or else you could get muted by Facebook. Include your copyright licenses in your description.

Facebook is getting worse about muting or removing videos with copyright violations. Be smart and get your licenses and display them prominently.

YouTube Live

Make sure your internet connection is strong

It is important for your internet connection to be strong enough to support the video.  Make sure your connection is fast and reliable before you go live!

Be prepared if something goes wrong

If there are any problems, make sure you have a backup plan in case things do not work out for whatever reason. This can include having someone else stream the service on another platform or at

Find the right lighting for your video – natural light is best, but if that’s not an option, try using lamps or overhead lights.

Having the right lighting is critical for good video quality. Natural light is best, but if that’s not an option, try using lamps or overhead lights to get the right amount of lighting so your face isn’t too dark!

Be familiar with how to use the equipment in advance so that you are ready when it is time for the service!

Being prepared is extremely important when live streaming church service. Make sure you know how to use the equipment and that your internet connection is strong before going live!

Invite people to attend the event by sending them an email with a link to the live stream.

Share with people on social media platforms and let them know you’re going live.

If your church is partnering with a local school or community center, ask if they can help share the event on their page as well.  Let people know that you are live streaming the service so that they have access to your message!

Encourage people to like the video, subscribe to your channel, and get notifications.

The way you build an audience on YouTube live is by getting engagement. Encourage people to like the video, subscribe to your channel, and get notifications so they don’t miss your next service!

Which Platform Should Your Church Use? YouTube Live vs. Facebook Live

Facebook Live is a great way to connect with people who are unable to attend your church, but YouTube live may be the better option if you have copyright issues. YouTube live may flag your content for copyright issues but they won’t mute it or take it down. They will just prohibit you from earning advertising revenue from the content. Most churches don’t care about that!

Both platforms offer different features that can work for pastors looking to reach out and communicate their message in new ways.  YouTube offers more editing options than Facebook Live does which is helpful for some churches.  

Facebook Live, on the other hand, is a great way to reach people who cannot attend your service who live in your community.

In short: YouTube live can be a little more complicated but has better video quality overall while Facebook live might flag some of your content for copyright violations but it’s easier to get started with and reaches people without internet access!

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that besides Youtube Live vs. Facebook Live, there are professional live streaming platforms out there that you could choose as your streaming platform that will also send live streams to both social media platforms.

The decision is yours. Personally, for me, Facebook Live is my choice for a free live streaming platform.

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