Pros and Cons of Virtual Platforms for Streaming your Micro Wedding during the Pandemic

By Arjita | 24 Nov 2020 | 5 min read

Google trends show that the search for "virtual weddings" increased by more than 10x this year at its peak. We recently organized an engagement with 300 guests on the live stream, where the couple forgot their laptop charger and had to delay the ceremony. In today's world, it's essential to have a virtual option for your guests to attend your big day, whether it's a micro wedding or a minimony or another special event.

Brides and grooms can customize their virtual wedding with the level of interaction they want. Facebook Rooms and YouTube Live allow for one-sided viewing where guests are watching a live broadcast, whereas Zoom allows for guests to interact and engage with others. In this post, we will walk through the pros and cons of the three most popular platforms, so you can pick the one that is right for you! Once you've selected the right platform, visit our post on tips on how to host a successful live stream wedding!

Cheatsheet: Our recommendation is at the end of the article :)

Dancing at a Virtual Sangeet

YouTube Live, For the social couple who wants a simple way to broadcast their wedding:

YouTube live is great if you are looking to broadcast (zero interaction) and your guests are not tech-savvy. It lets you create a custom link ahead of the event for your guests to easily access with one click. It also allows for unlimited viewers. The downside is that it just offers a live broadcast and no interaction or video communication with your guests as well as no encryption if security is a concern. YouTube has a good tutorial you can find here.

Facebook Rooms, For the intimate wedding couple who wants their friends and family to react and leave comments but may not have an extra hand to administer the live stream: Facebook allows you to create a group and then a room, streaming a live event within the group. By creating a group ahead of time, you can get your guests excited about the big day and share details leading up to the live stream. Unlike Zoom, Facebook allows people without a Facebook account to view the live stream. Also, there are filters, mood lighting, and backgrounds to make your wedding more fun. The minuses are that while guests can comment, there is no way to interact with them in breakout rooms or in small groups. Verge has a tutorial on how to create a Room and start an event here

Zoom Pro, For the interactive couple who wants their guests to actively participate and has a dedicated guest or professional on point to handle the live stream: Zoom is a two-sided platform with several features like virtual backgrounds (e.g., personalized wedding background or picture of the couple), break out rooms for cocktail hour or reception (e.g., avoid your high school friends awkwardly making conversation with your college buddies), and the ability for people to speak and go on mute (so your best man and maid of honor can make speeches, or your niece and nephew can perform their latest favorite dance to "Oh Ho Jane Jaana). Zoom does require someone on point to administer the live event, e.g., let people into the room, send people to breakout rooms, and mute / unmute guests. We recommend upgrading to Zoom Pro as it allows for unlimited time unlike the free version, which only allows for 40 minutes. Zoom provides a detailed playbook on running an engaging live event here.

Example of a Live Zoom Wedding from offbeat Bride

PC: Offbeat Bride

Summary

Comparison of Live Stream Platforms for Micro Wedding during Covid-19

  • Go for YouTube Live if you are looking for an easy way to broadcast your wedding without guest interaction
  • Go for Facebook Rooms if you have <50 guests and are looking for some engagement from your guests but may not have an extra pair of hands on-site to run the live stream
  • Go for Zoom Pro if you are looking for active engagement and interaction between guests and are able to hire or appoint a family member or friend to run the live stream
  • If you are looking for help in observing safe practices during your pandemic wedding to give you and your guests some peace of mind, please visit our Covid-19 Wedding Concierge or email hello@thedesibride for more information.
  • If you are planning a micro wedding, we have curated the top wedding venues in Texas here and would love to help you find the right vendors through our Wedding Venue Concierge.

 

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PC: Panilla Photography

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