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Recap and Recording: A Webinar About Webinars
July 23, 2015 by Zoom

Yesterday our Sr. Support Engineer Lukas Haselwood decided to take everyone on a meta trip through Zoom’s fantastic Video Webinar solution using – what else? – a webinar. This is one of our series of technology webinars. Next will be All About On-Premise Deployment on August 26. Now, back to webinars…

You can watch the webinar recording on YouTube:

And view the presentation.

If you’re a bit short on time, here are the key points:

1. Setting Up

To host the webinar, you must be the webinar. Just kidding, but you must sign up for a webinar plan. You can do this by signing into Zoom at zoom.us/signin and clicking on the Billing tab. You’ll need to purchase a Pro plan and then Wshutterstock_175924238ebinar as an Add-on to that Pro plan. You can choose which Webinar plan based on the maximum number of viewers you want to host: 100, 500, 1,000, and 3,000.

When you’re ready to start hosting webinars, we strongly recommend you use wired Internet and a headset. Imagine hosting a 3,000-person webinar, only to have your spotty wireless or your loud neighbor ruin everything. These are the scenarios that keep us up at night, so for pete’s sake, wire up!

2. Configuration

Scheduling a Webinar

Scheduling a Webinar

Configuring your webinar has three main elements that all take place within in your Zoom account under the My Webinars tab.

Scheduling: Especially if you’ve ever scheduled a Zoom meeting, you should find webinar scheduling to be pretty straightforward. Set the topic, time, duration, video and audio options, and you’re good to go.

Customization: You can customize your webinar page with your own banner, logo, and settings for invitation, reminder, and follow-up emails.

Links: Once you’ve scheduled and customized your webinar, you’ll have individual links for each panelist (these should never be shared around – they’re unique to each panelist), as well as a general registration link for the viewers.

3. Hosting

Anyone who has attended a Zoom Video Webinar or has watched the video above will notice that our webinars look a lot like our regular Zoom meetings. This is by design – We wanted our simple but powerful interface and HD video and screen sharing to make their way over to webinar. Despite these similarities, our webinar platform has several cool features all it’s own:

  • Polling: Panelists can pose questions to their viewers and get real-time answers via polling – a must for education!
  • Q/A: In addition to our regular chat feature, viewers can ask questions via text in Q/A, and panelists can respond either via text or live on video.
  • Promoting Viewers to Panelists: At any time, the host can promote an attendee to a panelist. This is helpful if the viewer asks a particularly interesting question via Q/A. It is more engaging to bring them live so they can be a part of the resulting discussion.

4. Reports

Webinar Reports

Webinar Reports

For many, the reports are the most important part of the webinar. Say you’re a marketer or a small business owner looking to grow your customer base. Yes, it is vital that you have something interesting to say during your webinar and that the event goes smoothly. But the most important thing is that you know who signed up for your webinar, who attended, who stayed for the whole thing, what kinds of questions they asked, and how they answered your polls. This is the information you need to make the whole webinar endeavor worthwhile. And this is exactly what you’ll find in reports. Just sign in to your account, and click on Reports, then Webinar Report.

5. Best Practices

Finally, our support team pulled together some top questions and answers about webinars to make sure they were all addressed by Luke. Here are some of the resulting best practices in no particular order:

  • As we said above, don’t share the panelist links outside of their assigned panelist. The link is unique and is used for reporting.
  • Your panelists and viewers can join from any Zoom-supported device. Note that panelists joining from the telephone must also joining from a PC or Mac first.
  • Right now we use Q/A for viewers to ask questions of the panelists and chat for discussions amongst the panelists (that viewers don’t see). This year we’ll also release a chat function for panelists to chat to viewers.

Getting Started

So you want to get started with Zoom Video Webinars. Here are your next steps:

  • If your just totally sold on webinars and can’t wait one second longer to get going, you can sign up by clicking on Billing in your account settings (don’t forget you need a Pro account first).
  • If you want to know more, request a live demo with a Webinar expert!