The year 2020 has brought a lot of changes to the business world. Perhaps some of the most prominent are the rise of remote culture and working from home. As a result, the use of video conferencing platforms has skyrocketed to ensure teams are able to communicate effectively from wherever they choose to work.
At the forefront of this communication shift has been Zoom, with a more than 354 percent increase in customers this year. With a goal to connect businesses, schools, and other organizations, the company dedicated its annual event, Zoomtopia, to helping “attendees better understand and navigate our new normal with safe and secure unified communications.”
The event was held virtually last week, and provided insight into Zoom’s vision of the future, lessons on how to maximize users’ investment in the platform, and the launch of some game-changing new product features — particularly if you or your company is considering a virtual events strategy or have already.
Included in the announcement were OnZoom, an events platform and marketplace, and Zapps, the ability to use apps within the Zoom platform itself to help improve productivity and engagement.
By releasing these new features, Zoom hopes to keep itself at the top of the most-desired list when it comes to quarantine software.
Originally available only as a private beta, Zoom has now made OnZoom accessible to everyone. This new events platform allows paid Zoom users to create, host, and monetize events — a seemingly useful tool as we begin to see the adoption of virtual events grow.
Hosts can run one-time events or event series for up to 1,000 attendees (this number varies depending on the host’s license), as well as sell tickets on the marketplace.
Right now, Zoom is accepting PayPal and credit card payment options from registrants, but they have mentioned looking into additional ways to pay in the future. The ability for nonprofits to receive donations through events is also possible, thanks to Zoom’s partnership with Pledgeling, an online fundraising platform.
The homepage of OnZoom features upcoming and new events, as well as top user picks. There are both paid and free options, depending on the event.
To search for a specific event, Zoom provides filtering options to narrow down your selection by date, category, price, and type.
Registering for an event requires a user to be logged in to Zoom. It’s important to note that OnZoom is only available to U.S. users at the moment, but they are planning on expanding globally.
With a goal of bringing best of breed apps to the Zoom user experience, the company has also launched Zapps.
With the introduction of this feature, Zoom’s launch partner apps can be brought right into the Zoom platform for “seamless productivity and engaging experiences.” Because of the direct integration, users no longer have to switch back and forth between their favorite applications, like Slack, Atlassian, SurveyMonkey, and ZenDesk, just to name a few.
Users now have the ability to flow information between teams before, during, and after a Zoom meeting, making it easier than ever to increase productivity across their organization.
According to Zoom, “these apps can be launched as screen shares, but more importantly, you can send them to all participants for real-time collaboration.”
Image credit: Zoom
Currently, Zoom features a total of 36 app partners on its website, with the plan to launch more in the near future.
Take advantage of these new features
If your organization is already using Zoom, these newly introduced product advancements provide a lot of opportunities to get more out of the platform and maximize your investment — whether you're using it (or considering it) for connecting remote employees and meetings, virtual events, or both!
This is especially true if you’ve started to dabble in the virtual event world; OnZoom can help spread the word about your events and get you in front of prospects you might have never been able to reach before. And with the rise of remote working, Zapps can aid in the streamlining of collaboration between teams.
If you’re not currently a Zoom user, however, consider the appeal that these features bring to the table; it may be worth making a switch.
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