The ATC has compiled this list to help WPI meeting and webinar hosts run successful events using the Zoom platform.
Click Zoom Meeting Vs. Webinar Comparisonunder Actions to determine whether you should set your event up in Zoom as a Meeting or a Webinar.
Plan to have all main presenters and support staff use a hard-wired Internet connection if at all possible. If off-campus, plan to disconnect from the WPI VPN as this is not required to connect to Zoom.
If you will be sharing a video during the event, plan to join your voice/listening audio using the telephone connection that Zoom provides so that you can hear the audio from your computer playing through the telephone connection as attendees are hearing it. ATC has heard reports from multiple hosts that they cannot hear the audio for the video while they are running their presentation (though attendees can). Joining from a telephone will mitigate this.
During the event, make sure you are in a quiet space so that background noise isn’t picked up by your microphone.
If using the Zoom webinar feature, enable a Practice Session (see Actions link on the right) when scheduling so that panelists can join ahead of the formal start time and do a quick rundown of the event logistics prior to attendees joining the event. Make sure panelists or co-hosts know NOT to click Start Webinar in the event until you are ready for attendees to join.
Think about what features will be used during the event. If you will be using polling, add those polls to the meeting/webinar (see Actions link on the right) before formally starting. If hosting as a webinar, consider using the Q&A feature instead of the chat. We recommend that Q&A be set so that attendee questions are NOT anonymous but that is entirely a host decision.
Make sure any content that is being shared is saved locally if at all possible and not streamed or accessed from a web connection or file server. This is especially important for videos as you do not want a video to appear choppy to attendees because your streaming bandwidth is working double-duty while connected to Zoom and the video.
During the Event
What roles will your team have during the event? Who will emcee? Who will run slides? Who will monitor chat or Q&A? Who will mute attendees who accidentally leave their microphone unmuted (for Zoom meetings, not webinars)?
Have your slides or shared content launched prior to allowing attendees to join.
Close out of all applications you will not be using during the event, especially if you are sharing a video. You don’t want attendees to be hearing new mail notifications, instant message alerts, etc.
Use the Spotlight feature (see Actions link on the right) to make sure attendees are seeing the video of the main presenter(s).
When sharing a video, leave the video as the active application during playback. When NOT using Zoom and playing a video on your computer, most videos continue to play in the background when you open up another application. However, multiple times ATC has discovered that this isn’t the case during a live Zoom event. For example, you launch a video that is being shared during the Zoom event but you want to open up the Q&A panel on your second monitor to organize the questions that you will be responding to during the event while attendees are watching the video. In this scenario, the Zoom Q&A panel becomes the active application and the video playback pauses for attendees.
Disable features that you do not plan to use during your event. For example, if you do not want attendees using the chat tool in your meeting or webinar, consider disabling it.