WebCami’s Toolbox: Zoom

I have to say, I’ve warmed up to using video conferencing for clients. My main concern has been that most of my clients aren’t computer savvy and they might feel intimidated trying to set something up for a chat. In the past, it’s been tough to find a program that the client could use easily and that didn’t break the bank. I’ve tried out several options including GoToMeeting, Join Me, and ScreenLeap to name a few. I also have Skype as an option. Zoom seems to be the easiest for clients to navigate. And, I’m only using the free version!

The bulk of my experience with Zoom has been as a member of the GoDaddy Pro Advisory Council. Routinely, I’m chatting with 10-20 people that all call in to these meetings and it works great. You can record your meetings, share you screen. They list that you can also take over a clients computer, but I haven’t done that yet.

For my current account, I’m on the free version that allows me to have:

  • Unlimited 1 to 1 meetings
  • 40 mins limit on group meetings (3 or more participants)
  • Unlimited number of meetings

Here are some tips for video conferencing that I’ve learned:

  • Always join with video if you can.  Photos are nice but the whole point is to have an “in-person” conversation.  It’s warmer to be there!  This isn’t always possible, but when it is, choose video.
  • Get and good camera (here’s mine) and always place it a bit ABOVE your eye level.  I keep mine on the top of my monitor.  Maybe it’s because I’m in my fifties, but the camera that angles up puts me in “I feel bad about my neck” mode.  (how I miss Nora Ephron).
  • Check your lighting.  I have a very bright office, so I always draw my shades before a video chat.  If it’s super dark, turn on a light but make sure you don’t look like a you’re telling a scary story by the campfire!
  • Mind your background.  Make sure it’s not a distracting mess behind you.
  • Mute when you aren’t talking.
  • Use your static photo if you have to leave the room.
  • USE the CHAT feature!  Chat is a great thing in your video conferences.  This is best when you aren’t doing a 1:1.  Although, you can share links in there with ANY conversation.
  • Have an agenda and stick with it.  Save small talk for the very end.

My time is valuable.  Driving to meetings is sometimes a must for me, but more and more, I’m training my clients that video chatting is better for both of us.

Is video conferencing a regular part of your business?  If so, please share your tips in our Facebook group.

RESOURCES: Forbes – 5 Reasons Why Your Company Needs to Embrace Video Conferencing Now

About WebCami

Cami MacNamara has been designing websites since 2002 from her home office in Seattle, Washington. Her career started as a way to be a stay-at-home mom. Certification soon followed and persistence paid off. Cami has designed 500+ websites and wants to share what she learned along the way. Look for her at WordCamp Seattle. Follow: / Twitter / Instagram