How to Create a Virtual Meeting Agenda

Avoid conducting an ineffective or non-impactful virtual meeting that cost your business time and resources. Knowing how to craft a virtual meeting agenda will help you keep your meetings short, informative, and to the point so that your team can remain efficiently on-task and maximally productive.

A virtual meeting agenda will help frame subjects and find quick resolutions to business issues

webcastingandvirtualevents.com gathered the following information on creating virtual meeting agendas to keep your meetings organized, reflecting the level of efficiency expected from your team.

What is the Purpose of a Virtual Meeting Agenda?

A virtual meeting agenda helps you and your team prepare for an online meeting and guide yourselves through the topics you need to discuss. The time spent on planning an agenda will save time for all meeting participants by establishing a clear set of objectives, topics, and time frames.

Creating the Perfect Virtual Meeting Agenda

With so many businesses having migrated their operations to remote working, the necessity for virtual meetings has grown exponentially, while the need for these meetings to be streamlined and efficient has become crucial to productivity. Your virtual meeting agenda should include the following:

Team and Meeting Logistics – Include standard meeting details like

  • The meeting date
  • The expected timeframe
  • The meeting access link
  • Expected team attendees
  • The physical location for team members attending in-person

Your attendees should have quick and advanced access to these details. While they can refer to their calendar invite, having a second or third reference (email and text) can help.

Note: In the digital workplace, it is crucial to know where your team members and/or meeting participants are geographically located to avoid time-zone conflicts.

Tip: Keep your virtual meetings within a respectable 15 to 30-minute timeframe. Remote working is already filled with a multitude of challenges. Your virtual meeting should not create another challenge or difficulty.

Virtual Meeting Objective – “What’s the point?” You will want to include the meeting’s key objective prominently in your agenda. Everyone in attendance needs to be aware of why the meeting is taking place so it can stay on track.

Tip: Including the meeting’s objective can signal the end of the meeting once the objective has been met.

Meeting Discussion Topics – Avoid stray conversations by clearly defining what topics will be addressed. Each topic should be listed with its allotted timeframe and the team member responsible for its presentation.

A virtual meeting agenda should include ordered meeting discussion topics

Virtual Meeting Structure – It is absolutely essential that you establish an order in which meeting topics will be addressed. Give everything a timeframe, including introductions, icebreakers, and Q&As. This will help you ensure precise meeting timing.

Extra Meeting Details – Be sure to include the following information (either in the description or in the footnotes) when you send out your virtual meeting agenda:

  • What documents or data should be formulated or prepared and by whom
  • List any relevant documents, files, and source material attendees should be familiar with
  • Who is responsible for what during the meeting (presentation, minutes, timekeeping, etc.)

Tip: Your meeting agenda should convey all pertinent meeting information to its attendees, reducing or eliminating any potential confusion or misunderstandings.

Team Feedback – A powerful ending to a well-organized virtual meeting agenda is a link or email address for team members to offer praise, criticisms, and suggestions about meeting structure, length, and/or content.

Time and Efficiency

One of the most challenging aspects of a functional and efficient digital workplace is a high level of respect for time.

You will not be effective in a digital workplace if you are in meetings or distracted all the time, and for most successful businesses, meetings are highly valued events. If you choose not to use a virtual meeting agenda, you are being inconsiderate with your coworker’s and peers’ time. Agendas help you keep meetings on task, allow participants time to prepare, define and restrict discussion time, and document crucial decisions and actions, so you don’t have to repeat the meeting.

Note: Meetings are the most costly form of collaboration. By pulling an entire team into a meeting, they are effectively all removed from production. Creating and using a virtual meeting agenda keeps everyone focused and significantly reduces the time spent away from production.

Virtual Agendas

In this article, you discovered what a virtual meeting agenda is, why they are crucial to virtual meeting efficiency, and how to put one together for your next virtual meeting.

By crafting and distributing a virtual meeting agenda, you establish a parameter for the meeting’s beginning, content, and ending. Thus, increasing effective information deliverance from senior staff to team members.

Ignoring the need for virtual meeting agendas leaves your team’s meeting subject to running overtime and accomplishing less than possible.

Sources:
extension.unh.edu/resource/best-practices-hosting-virtual-meeting
nceas.ucsb.edu/virtual-meeting-best-practices
strategicconsulting.wisc.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/332/2020/03/Guide-to-Effective-Meetings-Telecommuting_040620.pdf

5 Trends Making Event Strategies and Technology Evolve

Avoid becoming outdated and losing your audience as event technologies rapidly evolve. Knowing how powerful trends are forcing event strategies and technology to constantly change and upgrade will help you prevent loss in your audience and revenue.

Event trends strategies and technologies

webcastingandvirtualevents.com gathered the following information on 5 trends significantly changing the way events are planned, conducted, and utilize technology.

1. Livestream

Rarely do we see a trend catch on globally and so quickly as live-streaming has achieved. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing lockdowns, businesses and events were forced to seek alternate ways to continue production, staff interaction, and ultimately reach their audience. Livestreaming immediately became a global conduit to continue reaching audiences of all kinds.

With COVID-19 restrictions loosening, in-person gatherings and events are gaining popularity once again. However, innovative businesses are using hybrid events to increase reach and deliver content to a larger audience (incorporating in-person and livestream for the same event).

2. Facial Recognition

Event strategies and technologies involve facial recognition

Facial recognition is a method of recognizing human faces through technology. A facial recognition system uses biometrics to map out facial features from photographs or videos. It then compares the information with a database of known faces to find a match.

Not too long ago, using facial recognition to Identify people, grant access, read moods, or predict actions was considered science fiction and only seen in futuristic movies.

Surprise! It’s real and already being used in events like:

  • Football games
  • Trade shows
  • Conferences
  • Night Clubs

This technology allows greater automation for your event resulting in:

  • Contactless check-ins
  • Faster moving lines
  • Reduced interactions with event staff

More advanced software can read facial expressions and body language, giving it the ability to predict the mood of your audience.

Note: Facial recognition has been used for several years. In 2001, law enforcement used facial recognition on crowd members at Super Bowl 35 and more recently in cell phone technology, allowing the device owner to “unlock” it without using a passcode or thumbprint.

3. RFID Technology

Event strategies and technologies include rfid technology

Radio-Frequency IDentification (RFID) technology uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify and track tags attached to people, animals, and objects. An RFID system consists of a tiny radio transponder, a radio receiver, and a transmitter.

RFID chips are tiny and can discreetly fit inside an event attendee’s bracelet, badge, or pass. Being scannable, they dramatically reduce waiting or check-in times. They are ideal for cashless payments at events like concerts, carnivals, and festivals.

Note: When you use RFID technology in events, you can track the behavior and movement of your attendees, providing priceless insight into attendee preferences and venue layout.

4. Chatbots Tell it Like it Is

Event strategies and technologies include chatbot technology

As people become more reliant on asking Alexa and Siri to set their alarms, control their household, and advise them of bad weather conditions, we can expect to see digital assistants and artificial intelligence (AI) powered chatbots becoming commonplace in the events industry as well.

Chatbots are already being used at events like virtual trade fairs to answer attendee questions and provide information. Automating customer service allows for more rapid response times and frees up event organizers to focus on planning and conducting their event.

The following are some of the chatbot software platforms that can be installed on your website and used for audience interaction:

  • Chatbot.com
  • Hubspot
  • ManyChat
  • Freshchat
  • Drift

At a company level, chatbots free up your time by automatically answering common customer/user questions. A chatbot can also generate new leads, improve user experience, and increase sales.

5. 5G Network Technology

Event strategies and technologies include 5g network development

With the implementation of 5G network technology, there’s great expectation that music, party, and event venues will provide a much faster WiFi connection. That’s good news for both event organizers and attendees.

This technology is crucial at socially distanced events where you may be using an app or website for table/bar service. The increased speed makes other technologies like livestreaming, VR, and AR smoother, faster, and more efficient. 

Note: 5G wireless technology is intended to deliver higher peak data speeds, ultra-low latency, more online reliability, significantly increased network capacity, more network availability, and a more consistent experience for more users.

Changing Strategies and Technologies

In this article, you discovered 5 technological trends significantly influencing the way events of all kinds are being planned, conducted, and evaluated.

Following the evolution of technological trends and implementing them will help you remain competitive at a time when every lead, attendance, and sale is more important than ever.

Allowing technology to surpass you and your company’s capabilities will lead to the disinterest of your audience, loss in sales volume, and severe reduction in company revenue.

Sources:
its.umich.edu/communication/television-video/live-event-streaming/basics
nytimes.com/wirecutter/blog/how-facial-recognition-works/
us.norton.com/internetsecurity-iot-how-facial-recognition-software-works.html
mitsloan.mit.edu/ideas-made-to-matter/5g-explained
brookings.edu/blog/techtank/2017/06/02/chatbots-move-public-sector-towards-artificial-intelligence/

What is Live Streaming – Everything You Need to Know

Avoid making a mistake or not geting live streaming right. Knowing what live streaming is and how it works will help you remain eye-to-eye in business conversations.

Live stream broadcast

webcastingandvirtualevents.com gathered the following information on live streaming, its applications, and its benefits.

What is Live Streaming and How Does it Work?

Live streaming is when a streamed video is broadcast live over the internet (without previously being recorded and archived). Currently, tutorials, workouts, and social media videos can all be live-streamed.

What is an Example of Live Streaming?

Livestream services can cover a multitude of topics, from social media to video games to professional sports. Platforms such as Facebook Live, Periscope, Douyu, and 17 include the streaming of promotions, celebrity events, and streaming between users (videotelephony).

Is Live Streaming Free?

There are free social media platforms, like YouTube Live and Facebook Live, among others, that allow you to live stream an event free of charge (your costs are the production equipment and hired talent).

What’s the difference between streaming and live TV?

Live streaming is considered the same as streaming, except it permits content to be delivered over the internet as a real-time data stream. For example, encoded media files are broadcast for single-purpose transmission and real-time playback over the internet.

How do I watch live streaming?

To view a live stream, all you are required to have is an internet-enabled device, like a laptop, smart phone, or tablet, and access to the live stream’s platform. Current popular live-streaming apps include Facebook Live, Instagram Live stories, Twitch TV, and Tik Tok.

What are the benefits of live streaming?

Consider a few of the reasons why knowledgeable broadcasters use professional video services, and the valuable advantages live streaming has on hosting virtual live streaming events:

  • Customer Support
  • Mobile Streaming
  • Superior Quality Streams
  • Increased Audience Potential
  • Unlimited Varieties of Content Use
  • Analytics Tracking

What are the disadvantages of live streaming?

A potential drawback of live streaming events is the required increase in bandwidth. Live streaming demands substantial bandwidth, as synced audio and video data are transmitted in real-time over the internet.

Pros & Cons of Streaming Media on a Website

Media streaming has grown in popularity due to advancements in innovation and technology. Similar to other technology-inspired ventures, there are pros and cons associated with streaming media on a website:

Pros of Live Streaming

Instant Viewing – You get immediate access to the content, even when traveling. Various platforms will charge a flat monthly fee to receive full access to their programming.

Watch live streamed content from anywhere

No Download Time – Streaming platforms have made it easier for audiences to watch their content without stressing over download time or delays. Only a stable internet connection is required for you to watch or attend.

No Memory Space Requirements – There are no downloads involved, and you don’t have to stress over disk or memory space. Live streaming is becoming highly desired, as downloading content on your computer could take up immense amounts of memory, which can adversely affect the performance of your device.

Immediate Playback – In the earlier days of the internet, there was a need for users to include a link on their website if they wanted to share a video with their audience. The visitor had to download the content to watch it later. Now, with video streaming, you can get instant playback.

Multiple Streaming Options – Streaming websites offer you a vast list of options, and there are no limits on how many videos you can watch in a day, provided your subscription is up to date.

Cons of Streaming Media

Online Only – A downside to streaming media from a website is that the videos are only available online. This option severely limits content accessibility to those without internet access.

Internet Speed – Another disadvantage of streaming content is the requirement of a stable internet connection. For the best experience, you will need a minimum of 2MBPS of internet connection. Any less, and you will likely experience buffering and slow web pages.

Security – There is also a risk of exposing or losing financial and personal details when purchasing a subscription from an untrusted platform. However, reputable sites are adopting security measures to ensure your information security.

Live Streaming Technology

In this article, you discovered valuable information about live streaming, its multiple applications, advantages, and disadvantages.

Applying live streaming to your marketing strategy will help enhance the market performance of your products, increase your business’s visibility, and give your audience real-time information.

Ignoring this technology creates space and opportunity for your competitors to reach your audience and ultimately capture their business, decreasing your potential revenue.

Sources:
its.umich.edu/communication/television-video/live-event-streaming/basics
marketing-toolbox.davidson.edu/photography-video/live-streaming/

Webcasting and Video Conferencing Differences

Avoid using technology in a way that limits your ability to reach a large audience. Knowing the differences between video conferencing and webcasting will help you get your tasks completed, and message delivered more efficiently.

Virtual meeting held by video conferencing

webcastingandvirtualevents.com gathered the following information on how webcasting and video conferencing differ and when each is appropriate for your objective.

Webcasting and Video Conferencing

The way we work today wouldn’t have been possible just a handful of years ago. With major corporations abandoning their “brick and mortar” workspaces and sending their workforces home, remote working and meetings have become commonplace. This global phenomenon has given rise to several significant advancements in online technology, including webcasting and video conferencing.

Video Conferencing Attributes and Advantages

Video conferences are based on a one-to-one or one-to-few format. A team leader or department head will invite a specific individual or group of participants that they want to meet with. You could compare this type of meeting with a telephone conference call, but you can see and interact with each other on your screen. Some other valuable traits of video conferencing include:

  • This technology is commonly used, especially now that we (globally) are living in the age of “social distancing” and “remote working.”
  • Worldwide, the majority of modern office spaces and home computers are already equipped with video conferencing capabilities being webcams or online programs like Google Hangouts, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, and Webex Meetings, among others, for one-on-one or group meetings.
  • Meeting content is typically not accessible for viewing afterward unless the meeting is recorded and uploaded to a company webpage.
  • Meetings, conferences, and planning sessions always happen in real-time.
  • Such meetings are not typically open to the public or an audience. Participants must be individually invited to join the meeting by the host.


With video conferencing, a team leader or manager can assemble his/her department regardless of their individual global location.

Webcasting Attributes and Advantages

Recording material for webcasting content

A webcast is a produced or organized media presentation distributed using the Internet via streaming technology to distribute an individual content source to multiple simultaneous listeners, viewers, and audiences. A webcast can be distributed live or on-demand and could be considered “broadcasting” using the Internet. Some of the advantages of webcasting include:

  • Event webcasts can be viewed from practically anywhere. It can be watched from your living room, your office space, or (with your smartphone) from any location of your choice.
  • The potential for your message to reach anyone, anywhere remotely. Geographical restrictions are not considered a restriction anymore.
  • Webcasting can create a sense of urgency to participate in and/or purchase products due to content being available for a short time. Viewers can access the content information for a limited time and are encouraged to act fast. This creates urgency and curiosity for your event and its content.
  • Webcasting and live streaming eliminate steep costs like venue space, travel, accommodation, catering, and other expenses associated with in-person events.
  • Answering your audience’s questions, offering solutions to their problems, and providing high-quality content in live streams can keep your viewers’ attention until the event’s end. Creating fun and informative content entices viewers to watch it, share it, and discuss it with friends and family. Compelling content and viewer interest generally lead to brand expansion and increased revenue.
  • Additional revenue is secured by charging an “access fee” for the live or recorded event feed, like charging admission for an in-person event.
  • Live streaming allows your business to develop deeper connections with your target audience. It also allows your business to directly engage viewers by individually answering their questions and offering real-time solutions to their problems.

Note: When content can be accessed regularly and perpetually, users tend to procrastinate, lose interest, or change their minds about purchasing the content/product. With limited access and availability, a sense of urgency is fostered in your audience.

Tip: Recording and archiving live events can benefit your business down the road by allowing you to revisit content, relaunch products, or improve your methods of engagement.

Webcasting Events – Webcasting is an ideal form of “broadcasting” during times of social distancing and a general reluctance to physically gather in groups or audiences. The following are some of the event types more frequently migrating to this online format:

  • Town Halls
  • Celebrations
  • Funerals
  • Fundraising events
  • Product Launches
  • Learning/Education
  • Training
  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Entertainment

Note: As gathering restrictions became more strict during the COVID pandemic, webcasting became a safe and acceptable way to continue group and individual engagement worldwide.

Webcasting Platforms – When you want to broadcast your event, the following apps can facilitate seamless live delivery of your content:

  • Periscope
  • Facebook Live
  • ON24
  • Splash
  • Hopin

Tip: Most online platforms have been developed to facilitate the user experience (resembling a plug-and-play type of experience) while continuing to offer live support.

Video Conferencing Vs. Webcasting

In this article, you discovered the differences between webcasting and video conferencing, their uses, objectives, and impacts.

Knowing the differences between webcasting and video conferencing can aid you in scaling up or down the technology and bandwidth needed to accomplish your objectives.

Not knowing which technology to employ for your meeting or event can make you look unorganized, uneducated, untrustworthy, and foolish to your peers or virtual audience.

Sources:
iml.esm.rochester.edu/polyphonic-archive/article/webcasting-a-technology-that-can-reach-audiences-beyond-the-performance-hall/
ucumberlands.edu/blog/benefits-video-conferencing-and-virtual-meetings

Camera Position Tips for Live Streaming Video

Don’t miss the opportunity to look your best and make your live content more inviting and attractive with the right camera position. Knowing how to position your camera will help you get the best angles and shots for your live stream while captivating your audience.

Camera position is essential for conveying a captivating message to your audience

webcastingandvirtualevents.com gathered the following information and tips on camera positioning and improving your live stream content.

Where Should I Position My Camera?

Some camera angles can over-exaggerate facial features or distort your appearance. Video will always be a more significant challenge, especially if you don’t like the way you appear in the shoot.

Placing your webcam or camera equipment correctly can go a long way to achieving the right look. For best results, a USB webcam, full-on professional camera equipment, or the built-in webcam on your laptop, the camera lens should sit at or above eye level of your speaker, no higher than the hairline (unless using a more dramatic/dynamic shot).

Once the camera is in place, avoid shooting too close to the camera. Viewers may be turned off by someone being too close to the camera on a live video stream. Position the camera far enough away to capture your speaker’s shoulders and entire face with room to spare.

What Are Some Principal Camera Angles?

The degree, angle, or position of a camera can fundamentally alter the meaning of a photograph or video. Consider the following:

Low Angle – The subject or speaker is framed from below their eye line in a low-angle. A low-angle shot of one person is frequently used with a high-angle perspective of the other person to illustrate power dynamics between them.

High Angle – The camera, in a high-angle shot, is pointing down at your speaker. This perspective leaves viewers with the impression that they are “looking down” on them.

Dutch Angle – The camera is inclined or tilted to one side for a Dutch angle (Dutch tilt). You can leave viewers with a sensation or perception of disorientation, a destabilized mental state, or heighten tension by tilting the horizon lines of your video in this fashion.

Eye Level – You can achieve a completely neutral perspective by shooting your video at eye level (avoiding any superior or inferior positioning). This is similar to how we view and interact with people in real life, our eye lines intersect, and it can potentially eliminate barriers.

Overhead Shot – Overhead shots are taken from above and look down on your subject or speaker. These are typically filmed at 90 degrees from above; lesser angled shots would be referred to as low-angle shots.

Shoulder Level Shot – A camera angle that is as high as your speaker’s shoulders is known as a shoulder-level shot. Shoulder-level shots are more common than eye-level shots, which can make your speaker appear shorter than he or she actually is.

The speaker’s head can reach the top of the frame because the camera is aligned with the shoulder. It also raises the subject’s eye line slightly above the camera, giving an impression of a lower viewpoint.

Over The Shoulder (OTS) Shot – One angle that can change a viewer’s perception of a live conversation is an over-the-shoulder shot. For example, video of one speaker’s face captured from “over the shoulder” of another speaker can be used to demonstrate a conflict, disagreement, or confrontation.

Cowboy/Hip Level Shot – When your camera is positioned around waist height, you’re taking a hip level or cowboy shot. Hip-level scenes are more beneficial when one person is seated and the other is standing.

Cowboy shots can be incredibly effective camera angles when there is action occurring at hip level. This is why the shot is known as a “cowboy shot.” Have you pictured a gun, holster, or rival off in the distance in your imagination yet?

Close-Up Shot (CU) – When you want to focus on your speaker’s facial features without any distractions in the video, use the close-up. For this type of shot, your speaker’s face would be shown in a close-up from their brow to their chin.

Medium Shot – A medium shot or a mid-shot falls somewhere between a close-up and a long shot. The subject is shown from their head to their waist. It’s a close enough shot to see their face while also seeing some of their body language.

A medium shot captures features and gestures of your speaker or subject

Long Shot – A long shot would be the complete opposite of a close-up. It sees the entire body of the subject, from head to toe. This offers a better feel for the subject’s surroundings and conveys information that would be otherwise omitted in a close-up.

Lighting Tip

All cameras can capture more superior video when there is a good light source. When selecting or setting up a place to record, avoid locations with low light or too much background lighting (windows positioned in the background can often present a challenge for some cameras like webcams). Poor lighting can leave your video appearing washed out or leave your speaker looking like a shadowy figure.

Light your speaker from the front with soft, indirect light, and minimize other existing lighting in the room, particularly from windows or light sources from behind.

Background Tip

Even though you’ve made your speaker the center of attention in your video production, you still need to be aware of the video’s background contents. Your audience will take notice of everything, and it can easily distract their attention from your speaker. Try to keep your background simple, avoiding anything overly busy or cluttered, and avoid windows that would let in natural light or may reflect your computer screen. Choosing a plain wall as your video’s backdrop is often the best option.

For more tips to get the best video shots, see 10 Tips for Video Recording Yourself.

Test and Practice Your Camera Position

This is particularly crucial if you’re recording in a new or unfamiliar location or with new equipment. It’s always recommended to record test videos to confirm that your setup and equipment are giving you the look, sound, and feel you desire.

This is also an opportunity for your speaker to practice speaking in front of the camera.

Live Streaming Camera Tips

In this article, you discovered crucial information and tips about camera positioning, lighting, and backgrounds.

Knowing where to place your camera for a live event can make or break the success or failure of your event. Learning how to maintain your viewer’s attention will ultimately lead to more successful campaigns and higher profits.

Poor camera positioning, set layout, or bad lighting can lead to your live stream’s audience fleeing from your event and potentially cost you your revenue.

Sources:
nfi.edu/camera-angles/
users.rider.edu/~suler/photopsy/camera_angles.htm
technicallythinking.org/2013/05/27/video-directing-101-camera-placement/