Everything you do online creates your online presence and impacts your marketing. Consider Zoom and other online meeting and networking platforms as part of your marketing strategy. Be intentional about creating a thoughtful, inclusive space that represents you and your brand well.
Make Your Brand Clear
Carry your brand into your online meetings. Incorporate both your name and your company in your screen name. Consider using a background that includes your business name and/or logo. This can be on the wall behind you or an image you use to mask your actual background. You can also wear branded apparel.
Verbally connect yourself with your company and make sure everyone understands the goal of the conversation.
Use the chat feature to share contact information and extend an invitation for follow up and 1-1 conversations.
Plan for Inclusiveness
Video meetings can also exacerbate inequalities that exist in physical meetings and introduce new challenges. For example, you can’t read body language or facial expressions as easily, so it’s more difficult to tell if someone is uncomfortable or disagrees with you.
Here are some simple tips you can use to make sure your video meetings are inclusive and welcoming for all.
- Create an agenda. Let everyone know the plan for the call before it begins.
- Give participants a say in the schedule. With remote work, you can’t assume that everyone is keeping M-F 9-5 hours.
- Handle interruptions with grace. Find the funny in moments when a child, animal, or parent interrupts. We’re all doing our best.
- Make cameras optional. Not everyone is comfortable sharing their home turned into office space or has the ability to isolate from distractions.
- Give everyone a chance to speak. Internet connections can create lag, and folks with slower speeds can be hesitant to interrupt the flow.
Be as personable online as you are in face-to-face meetings. (Remember those?!?) Be sure to give everyone time to settle in and meet each other. Give them a chance to feel welcome before diving into the planned agenda.
Use hand gestures to help people follow your conversation. Watch their faces for reactions that may tell you to move on or slow down. Take pauses to ask questions and get reactions.