YouTube Streaming vs. Making Videos: Which Is Right for You?

23 May 2023

Published: 23rd May 3:50PM

When it comes to creating content on YouTube, there are two primary methods: live streaming and uploading pre-recorded videos. Both methods have their own unique features, benefits, and drawbacks. Understanding these differences is crucial when deciding which format aligns best with your content creation goals and audience preferences. This article will compare YouTube streaming and making videos, helping you determine which option is the best fit for your YouTube channel.

YouTube Streaming

Live streaming on YouTube allows creators to interact with their audience in real time, providing a unique and engaging experience. This method is particularly popular among gamers, artists, and educators who can provide live tutorials, Q&A sessions, or real-time gameplay.

Features of YouTube Streaming

Real-Time Interaction: One of the main attractions of live streaming is the ability to interact with viewers in real time. The live chat feature allows viewers to comment, ask questions, and provide feedback during the stream. This creates a dynamic and interactive environment that can foster a strong sense of community.

Super Chat and Super Stickers: These are monetization features exclusive to live streaming. Viewers can purchase Super Chats or Super Stickers to highlight their messages in the chat stream, providing an additional revenue source for creators.

Memberships: Like Patreon, YouTube allows creators to offer channel memberships. Members pay a monthly fee to access exclusive perks, like custom emojis or members-only live chats.

Live Events and Premieres: These features allow creators to schedule live streams or video premieres in advance, creating hype and anticipation among viewers.

However, live streaming also comes with its challenges. It requires a stable and robust internet connection, and there’s little room for errors or editing during the broadcast. Additionally, it can be difficult to find a streaming time that works for all viewers, especially for channels with an international audience.

YouTube Videos

Pre-recorded YouTube videos remain the backbone of the platform. They allow for more control over the content, as creators can plan, record, edit, and revise their videos before publishing.

Features of YouTube Videos

Editing: With pre-recorded videos, creators can perfect their content through editing. This allows for a polished final product that can include special effects, captions, annotations, and more.

Scheduling: YouTube allows creators to schedule their videos to go live at a specific time. This can be particularly useful for maintaining a regular upload schedule, even when the creator is unable to manually publish a video.

Monetization: Similar to streaming, creators can monetize their pre-recorded videos through ad revenue, channel memberships, and sponsored content.

SEO and Discoverability: Pre-recorded videos can be optimized for search engine optimization (SEO), increasing their discoverability. Creators can use keywords in their titles, descriptions, and tags to improve their video’s ranking in search results.

However, pre-recorded videos lack the real-time interaction that live streaming offers. They also require more time for planning, recording, and editing, which can be a drawback for creators looking to produce content quickly.


In summary, the choice between YouTube streaming and making pre-recorded videos largely depends on your goals, resources, and the preferences of your audience. If real-time interaction and community building are important to you, live streaming could be a great fit. If you prefer having control over every aspect of your content and value a polished final product, making pre-recorded videos might be the way to go.

Remember, you don’t have to limit yourself to just one method. Many successful YouTubers utilize both live streams and pre-recorded videos to engage their audience and diversify their content. Ultimately, the best strategy is the one that aligns with your content creation goals and serves your audience

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About the author

Róisín has been playing games for as long as she can remember. Focusing on FPS games, Róisín is our resident Call of Duty nerd.
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