Facebook and YouTube Premiere Offer Relief From Potential Livestreaming Tech Problems

Many churches have entered the livestreaming arena in the last weeks since COVID-19 has prevented our worship gatherings. There are lots of things that can go wrong in a live broadcast. I have heard from many churches of issues they have and the stress the process is causing. Facebook and YouTube both have a feature that allows you to upload a premade video to their platforms and schedule a premiere. This creates a live-like situation where the video begins at the date and time you choose. You can just hop on the chat and let it roll just as if it was a live event–but without the stress and potential problems. Having a prerecorded video for many churches will mean a higher quality video since you have time to edit it, add in graphics without the stress of cueing them live, add overlays of lyrics and much more. Here are instructions to get you going this week. 


Facebook Premiere

Premieres lets you schedule and debut videos as Live moments. After the broadcast, the video will be saved on your Page.

A Premiere has to be scheduled at least 10 minutes in advance. You won’t be able to launch a Premiere immediately, so be sure to plan ahead. Pages can schedule more than one Premiere for the same time.

Viewers are able to click a button to subscribe to notifications on your Premiere. Subscribers receive their first notification 20 minutes before your Premiere begins.

Schedule a Premiere
  1. On your page’s toolbar, go to Publishing Tools.
  2. On the left sidebar, click Scheduled Posts.
  3. Click the + Create button in the top right.
  4. Click Photo/Video in the Create Post box that pops up.
  5. Upload the video you want to Premiere
  6. On the Add Video box that comes up, give the video a title and description. You can also add tags and select a playlist, if applicable.
  7. Click Next
  8. Select Premiere
  9. Enter the date and time you want to “go live.” (Followers will receive notifications).
  10. You can also upload an image that will be your promotional image for the service by clicking Add Image and uploading your prepared graphic.
  11. Click Publish.

Here’s a video tutorial to walk you through the process:

YouTube Premiere

YouTube provides this tutorial to help you get started with Premieres:

YouTube Premieres lets you and your viewers watch and experience a new video together. It’s like a movie or TV show premiere. Premiering your video lets you schedule a video upload and create buzz around the video with a shareable watch page.

Note: Premieres can only be created using a computer, but viewers can watch the premiere on any platform like computer, iOS, Android, and mWeb.

Premiere a new video

  1. At the top, click Upload  , or visit youtube.com/upload.
  2. Select your video to upload and enter video details.
    Note: 360/vr180 or an output greater than 1080p isn’t supported for Premieres
  3. On the “Preview & publish” tab, check the box next to “Set as a Premiere”.
  4. Choose between “Start immediately” and “Schedule for a later date”. If scheduling for later, select the date and time of your premiere.
  5. Select Done to complete the upload process.


Before the premiere starts:
  • A public watch page is created. The video will eventually premiere on this watch page.
  • Viewers who choose to get notifications  get a tune-in notification around 30 minutes before the start of your premiere. A second notification is sent at the start, letting viewers know the premiere is starting. Learn more about managing notifications.
  • You can interact with your audience in comments and live chat. You can also interact in Super Chat when it’s turned on.
Viewers can set reminders for premieres. Encourage them to set a reminder on the watch page with a pinned comment or in the description. You can also remind them through chat.
When the premiere starts:
  • A countdown will show during the first 2 minutes of the premiere. When the countdown is over, viewers watch the video together in real-time.
    • Viewers can’t scrub forward, but they can scrub backwards during the stream.
    • The concurrent viewers count shows the number of viewers watching.
  • You can interact with your audience in comments and live chat. You can also interact in Super Chat when it’s turned on.
When the premiere is over:
  • The video remains on your channel as a regular upload.
    Note: After the premiere, the countdown won’t be included in your video.
  • Chat replay is available for viewers who want to experience the premiere chat after it has ended. You can turn off chat at any time.
Premiere watch page

Once a premiere is scheduled, a shareable and public watch page is created. This page shows the video metadata, including title, description, and thumbnail. Your video will eventually premiere on this watch page. Viewers can start interacting through Comments and Live Chat before and during the premiere.

For more information, check out this page.

If livestreaming is too stressful or you aren’t able to achieve the quality you desire, consider prerecording the service and premiering it on one or both of these platforms. Being present on the chat will give it a live feel.

You might sleep better.