Live events in Microsoft Teams enable participants to join events remotely: they can take part from anywhere, with any device. With the live events feature you can digitize your event and afterwards easily make the recording available on-demand for your participants.
In this article you will get to know how to set up, execute and follow up your own live events in Microsoft Teams, in 5 simple steps:
1. Step: Planning a live event
If you want to organize a live event, you can schedule it in Microsoft Teams the same way you would schedule a regular Teams meeting. This way, the live event appears directly in the speakers’ calendars. During creation, an attendee link is generated, which can be sent to the participants afterwards.
We therefore recommend that you define the roles of Producer and Speakers as well as the group of participants (internal, external) in advance, in addition to the specific date and time. You should also consider whether you want to have the event recorded and allow questions. Once the event has started, you can no longer adjust the settings for the Q&A.
2. Step: Setting up a live event
Once you have defined the parameter of your live event, create the it in the following way:
- In Teams, open your calendar by clicking on the icon on the left margin. Then open the dropdown menu “New meeting” and select ‘Live event’.
- A new window will pop up, where you can set the details (Title, date, time and description) for your live event. Additionally, you can invite up to 250 Speakers and Producers. Confirm your selections with “Next”.
Note: We recommend inviting at least one other person as a Producer or Speaker, so they can help with moderation of incoming questions. By default, whoever you invite is assigned the role of a Speaker, but this can easily be adjusted in the dropdown menu.
- Next, you have the option of selecting permissions for your live event. You have 3 options:
- People and groups: Only the specified people and groups can watch the live event.
- Org-wide: Everyone in your organization can watch the live event. (Sign-in required)
- Public: The live event will be open to anyone. Use when most of the attendees are outside your organization. (No sign-in required)
- Afterwards you can manage various settings for the execution and production of the live event. Most of the options are selected by default but can be deactivated at this point. The following options are available:
- Recording available to Producers and Presenters: This option enables producers and Speakers to download the recording of the event for up to 180 days afterwards.
- Recording available to attendees: Selecting this option enables attendees to replay the video for up to 180 days. All the attendee must do to use this on demand function is to open the link again.
Attention: Participants can still use the chat to ask questions. As the Producer will not be notified about questions once the live event has ended, they will remain unanswered.
- Captions: If subtitles are needed, this option can be selected. After selecting the language spoken by the Presenters, select the output language.
Tip: This function works best if the pPresenters speak slowly and clearly.
- Attendee engagement report: Enabling this function will record the e-mail address and the time attendees entered or left the event. However, anonymous attendees will not be tracked.
- Q&A (=Questions & Answers) Enables attendees to interact with Producers and Presenters in the chat. Incoming questions can be answered by Producers and Presenters and made public for all participants.
- Once you have made all the settings, you can confirm your entry by clicking on the “Schedule” button. All invited Speakers and Producers will then receive an appointment in their calendar.
Note: The selected settings can still be changed afterwards. To do so, simply open the appointment in your Teams calendar and click on “edit” on the bottom right.
3. Step: Inviting your participants
To invite participants to the live event all you need is a participant link. This can be retrieved by opening your calendar in Teams and clicking on the event entry. There you have the possibility to retrieve the link:
You can then distribute the link through the medium of your choice: for example, send it in a Teams Channel, an e-mail, a website such as SharePoint, or send a calendar invitation from Outlook Invitation or another e-mail program of your choice.
Your participants can then join the event directly in Teams – in the desktop app (Windows or Mac), the web or on their mobile phones. Participants who do not have a Microsoft Teams account can also dial in anonymously using a browser (Chrome, Firefox or Edge).
4. Step: Executing a live event
To execute a live event as a Speaker or Producer, start by opening the calendar in Teams, then select the live event and click on “Join”. Before you enter the event, you can now adjust the settings for the microphone and camera. Confirm your participation by clicking on “Join now”.
Executing an event as a Presenter:
As a Speaker you have the option to see all other Speakers, share your screen and read and publish incoming questions of the participants. In addition, you can make announcements and request control, for example to click through a shared PowerPoint.
Executing an event as a Producer:
As a Producer, you have the option to share either screen content or video content from yourself or a Presenter. Since Producers are responsible for the content, their screen view is different from the view of Speakers or participants. The different functions are now explained:
- Camera sharing: To share the image from your own video camera with the attendees, select your camera feed at the bottom of the screen to display it in the queue (on the left) before sending it to the live event (on the right).
- Screen sharing: If you want to share your desktop or a window, select “Share” at the bottom right, then click on the content you want to share. If you want to stop sharing, click on the “Stop sharing” button in the same place.
- Sending content live: To send content (camera or split screen) from the queue to the live event, click on the “Send live” button below the queue. On the left side below the queue window, you can also select whether you would like to share content or split screen.
- Start live event: Select “Start“ to start broadcasting to your participants.
Note: Mute all Speakers who are not actively speaking. If you are not muted, your audio is transmitted to the participants.
There is a delay of 15 to 60 seconds from the time a media stream is sent to when participants see it.
When you stop sharing the video or content (for example, by turning off your camera), it is displayed that the live events will resume in a moment.
- Muting microphones: As a Producer, you have the option to mute all microphones. The Presenters can then turn their microphones back on when it is their time to speak.
- Chat: Only Producers and Presenters can see the content of this chat. The chat can be displayed by clicking on the speech bubble icon in the upper right.
- Questions & Answers: Through this chat, you can view incoming questions from participants, answer them directly and publish them for everyone. You can also make announcements, which are sent to all participants.
- Tip: Why not use the chat function as an active communication channel? The moderator of the live event can not only announce that questions can be asked in the chat but also send the link to the recording or to a feedback questionnaire. You can use the announcement function for this purpose.
- Ending a live event: To end a live event click on „End“.
Note: Once the event has ended it cannot be restarted.
5. Step: Managing the recording and reports
Once an event is over, Presenters & Producers can perform the following actions access the recording and associated reports (if configured):
- Recording of the live event in mp4-format
- Q&A report of the live event in an Excel-file
- Report on attendee engagement in an excel-file
- Protocol of the live event (File of captions in spoken and translated languages) as a vtt-file
To access and manage recording and reports, open the live event in your Teams calendar and expand the section “live event resources”.
In addition to downloading the reports and recording, the organizers also have the option of deactivating the availability of the video-on-demand for participants and updating or deleting all files.
To ensure the success of a live event pay attention to the following points:
- Think about your requirements in advance and define your parameters as precisely as possible when creating the event. Remember to set your participant group and permissions before you share invitations through your preferred communication channel.
- The Producer must send the live content to be shared at the appropriate time. He should also keep an eye on the muting of the microphones and moderate or pass on the questions in the chat. Once a live event is finished, it cannot be restarted.
- To retrieve the associated recording and reports after a live event, open the event in your calendar to access the live event resources. Here you can also enable and disable the availability of video-on-demand, and update or delete files.
In the following days we would like to share our internal experience with digital live events with you. During the webinar we would like to show you once again what live events are, familiarize you with the basic functions and talk about our experience with digital conferences and formats.
The webinar takes place on 9th of April at 7 p.m. UTC+2. Click here to register.
If you have any further questions regarding licenses or need support with the setup, please contact us at knkServices@knk.com.
 Speaker (presenter) = moderates the event, can talk and share their screen
 Producer = controls output and visibility of content, manages incoming question, can talk and share their screen
(Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash)
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