Microsoft Teams meetings have been a revolutionary addition to business and education collaboration. The Teams Live Events feature expanded Teams' virtual event capacity to reach larger audiences. We recently gave you a quick overview of Teams Live Events. But, you may be wondering: which one fits best for your event? Let's take a look:
First, What Are Your Goals?
Setting up a virtual event takes some thoughtful planning. With Microsoft and EventBuilder's powerful tools at your disposal, determining the goals for your event and working from that framework can help you decide what technology best aligns with your event goals.
Some questions to ask yourself:
- Who are my invitees?
- Is my event internal to my organization or external?
- How many attendees am I expecting?
- Are there privacy considerations I need to be aware of?
- Do I need/want a collaborative environment? (desktop sharing, two-way audio for presenter-attendee interaction, etc.)
- What information and data do I want/need to gather about my registrants/attendees?
- Do I need to record the event for later on-demand viewing?
- Can I produce the event on my own, or do I need assistance?
Once you have a clearer focus of your event and goals, take the next step and decide on the right technology.
Choose Microsoft Teams Meeting
Microsoft Teams is awesome, no doubt about it. Its features and capacity have grown exponentially in 2020. You want to give your attendees the best possible experience, and we've found certain scenarios fit the best with the standard Teams meeting function.
- Smaller events with 50 people or fewer is manageable while maintaining the interactive and collaborative feel of a face-to-face seminar or function.
- Teams Meeting has a max capacity of 1,000. However, managing a 1,000-person event in the standard Teams interface is a huge undertaking with the potential for chaos — cross talking, interruption, technical issues, etc. The word we found best describes this situation is "unruly."
- Events where invitees are internal to your organization, such as new employee orientation, cross-department training, and team earnings updates, work well in the familiar Teams environment.
- If your invitees are external to your organization, be aware of privacy issues — attendees can see the names of other attendees in the Teams presentation environment.
- For familiarity, ease of use, and flexibility, using Microsoft Teams for webinars and collaborative events is a smart choice when you want a simple, manageable presentation delivery method that allows for screen sharing, whiteboard use, and two-way audio attendee interaction.
What EventBuilder Can Do for Your Teams Meeting Event:
- Custom Registration Pages: EventBuilder's customized Registration pages help organize your webinar/virtual event and enable you to gain event and registrant insights for shaping future event programming.
- Automatic Communication Emails: System-generated emails can be customized and scheduled to send to your Registrants and Attendees for event invites, reminders, and post-event surveys.
- Registration and Attendance Reports: The data EventBuilder collects provides event organizers with comprehensive registrant and event reports.
- Event Management: EventBuilder's professional event management services can provide a dedicated Event Producer for your Teams webinar, including technical support, event moderation, and post-event reporting.
Choose Teams Live Events
Teams Live Events, an integrated feature in Microsoft Teams, offers users an opportunity to produce large events in a one-to-many communication format, like town-hall meetings or company hands-on gatherings. This is a great choice when your event is big and when you are in need of a platform that can broadcast it to attendees.
- Teams Live Events offers three connection types:
- Selected Groups/People — Only specified people and groups can watch the live event.
- Anyone with a verified Microsoft 365 email address at your company (sign-in required).
- Open to anyone — no sign-in required. For when most of the attendees are outside of your organization.
- Teams Live Events offers some unique features, such as split-screen presenter webcam/presentation content view, Q&A panels, and the ability to scale for up to 20,000 attendees (until June 30, 2021).
- Assigning event roles, including Producers, Presenters, and Organizers, helps keep large-scale events organized and well-managed. This can introduce some day-of complications, so it's essential to have well-defined roles and to conduct a rehearsal or practice event.
- There is limited data gathering with Teams Live Events, particularly when events are open to the public, in which case no attendee information is obtained.
What EventBuilder Can Do for Your Teams Live Event:
- Registration: Like Microsoft Teams, EventBuilder can be implemented with Teams Live Events to create customized registration pages, helping Organizers understand the scope of their event and plan for their presentation accordingly.
- Reporting: The information collected at the time of registration and via EventBuilder's communication options captures event data and attendee information both pre- and post-event.
- Data Visualization Tools: A new addition to EventBuilder's product line, custom connectors for Microsoft Power BI are now available to help Organizers bring the intelligence gathered from the event to life.
- Event Production/Management: One of the more overwhelming aspects of hosting a large event with Teams Live Events is juggling the organization, production, and presentation, as well as technical aspects of the broadcast and troubleshooting. By offering professional event management, EventBuilder can assist your Teams Live Event every step of the way to make it as successful as possible with technology, event, and training support.
Choose EventBuilder Streaming
EventBuilder Streaming, available to our Suite subscribers, offers a no-download, any-browser, any-OS streaming solution for webinars and virtual events. Our streaming solution allows Organizers to capture the entire attendee experience from invitation to post-event and beyond.
- EventBuilder Streaming is an excellent option when your event is larger, up to 2500 attendees, but you would also like the ease of Teams’ presentation environment.
- Not only for larger events, EB Streaming works well for smaller events where attendees are consuming your content and privacy is a consideration.
- Events aren't limited to four hours, as with Teams Live Events: schedule all-day events and don't worry if you're running behind.
- EventBuilder's bot joins the Teams’ presentation environment and streams to the attendees’ browser-based viewing console.
- One-click entry: attendees are provided a URL with their registration confirmation email, which opens the streaming console: no additional searching or clicks.
- Integrated, live Closed Captioning available (add-on).
- Encourage attendee interaction with live Q&A, "raised hand," and integrated, real-time polling. See answers to your polls right away.
- Security controls, including allowlist/denylist, validation code, and email verification.
- Cloud-hosted event recordings.
A Comprehensive Virtual Event Solution
One of the advantages of using EventBuilder to create and produce your webinars and events is our product's ability to help you capture the event's lifecycle from start to finish using a robust platform you already know: Microsoft Teams. Additionally, full-service event management is available for Teams, Teams Live Events, and EventBuilder Streaming, providing event, program, and technology management for all of your programming. We'll be there with you start to finish. Contact us for a consultation today!