This guide will show you how to host a video livestream on your own website but make it only available to people who either pay or sign up with an email address. Pro-tip: Because Vimeo has a separate embeddable event chat, you could make a private chat accessible only to a certain tier or logged-in or paid users.
- your own website (eg, WordPress, Squarespace, Webflow, Ghost, etc.)
- a Vimeo Premium account
- a Pico account
- a Stripe account (you can set this up via Pico)
(If you don't have a website, contact [email protected]. We can recommend a simple site for your livestream.)
Set up Vimeo
In order to livestream via Vimeo, you'll need to signup for Vimeo Premium, which is $75/month (though billed annually at this time).
What if I have lower tier Vimeo account? Or use another livestream service
If you don't intend to livestream, you can use this same tutorial to gate access to embedded videos. The Pico part of this tutorial is valid for all other livestream platforms, like Boxcast or Streamspot. You can use these same tips to embed YouTube videos as well, but note that YouTube does not support embed-only livestream.
Creating the livestream
Vimeo makes this pretty easy. But pay attention to these two options:
- Select Hide from Vimeo so that the stream only shows via embed.
- Set Embed privacy to your domain.
Copy your embed code
In the Embed tab, you can copy out the Event embed code as well as the Chat embed code if you want to allow a live chat to happen at the same time.
Then place it on your site. We're doing that in Webflow (ignore the privacy setting warning, since we're currently on the Webflow staging site):
Setting up Pico to gate access
Pico makes it easy to quickly launch free, registration-only, or paywalled video streams to your community. Unlike with other platforms that might host your video content (and take a large fee), Pico allows you to use your own Stripe account and host your content on your own site. Here's how:
Set up recurring membership
Using Pico’s Signals feature, you can restrict access to the Vimeo embed. You can also use Pico to simply require an email signup to view content. You can apply separate logic to the embedded chat, for example making the livestream free but the chat paid-only. Or making the chat accessible only to higher-tier subscribers.
Pico now allows you to sell one-day, -week, or -month passes for those who may not want to commit to a recurring subscription.
Just want to ask for donations for now? You can do that too
You can have a donation page like this either on a hosted landing page or as a popup on your website live in <20 minutes. You just need a Stripe account (which you can setup in Pico’s dashboard). (Create a free Pico account here.)