Meetings vs Webinars - The Difference

Meetings vs Webinars - The Difference

Overview

The Meeting and Webinar platforms offer similar features and functionality but have some key differences.

Meetings are designed to be a collaborative event with all participants being able to screen share, turn on their video and audio, and see who else is in attendance.

Webinars are designed so that the host and any designated panelists can share their video, audio and screen. Webinars allow view-only attendees. They have the ability to interact via Q&A, chat, and answering polling questions. The host can also unmute the attendees. Attendees in webinars, can not rename themselves as well. 

This article covers:

Meetings versus webinars

 MeetingWebinar
DescriptionZoom meetings are ideal for hosting more interactive sessions where you’ll want to have lots of audience participation or break your session into smaller groups.Think of webinars like a virtual lecture hall or auditorium. Webinars are ideal for large audiences or events that are open to the public. Typically, webinar attendees do not interact with one another. Though Zoom provides options for you to get more social with your attendees, your average webinar has one or a few people speaking to an audience.

Best used for
Small to large groups (2+ participants) for:
  • Customer-facing meetings
  • Sales meetings
  • Training sessions
Large events and public broadcasts (50+ attendees) such as:
  • Town halls
  • Quarterly updates
  • Educational lectures

Typically used by
  • General employees
  • Training groups
  • Event hosts
  • SVPs and C-Suite
CostFree and Paid subscription options available.Paid Add-on, available to Pro or higher subscriptions.

 

Feature comparison

FeatureMeetingWebinar
Participant roles
Audio sharing
  • All participants can mute/unmute their own audio
  • Host can mute/request to unmute participants
  • The Host can set all participants to mute upon entry
  • Only the Host and panelists can mute/unmute their own audio
  • Attendees join in listen-only mode*
  • The Host can unmute one or more attendees
Video sharingAll participantsHosts and panelists
Screen sharing
CapacityUp to 100 with free license, up to 1,000 depending on plan and large meeting add-on.Up to 100-10,000 participants, depending on the license.
Participants listVisible to all participantsVisible to host and panelist
Email remindersN/A If registration is enabled
ChatIn-meeting ChatWebinar chat
Meeting reactions N/A
Nonverbal feedbackOnly raise hand
Q&AN/A 
File transfer N/A
Whiteboard
Annotation
PollingPolling for meetingsPolling for webinars
LivestreamFacebookYouTubeWorkplace by FacebookCustom Streaming ServiceFacebookYouTubeWorkplace by FacebookCustom Streaming Service
RegistrationRegistration for meetingsRegistration for webinars
Closed captioning
Recording
Breakout roomsN/A 
Practice session N/A
Waiting room N/A
Paypal integrationN/A 
Require password to join
International dial-in numbers

*Note: If the host or co-host enables Allow to talk for an attendee, they will be able to enable their microphone as well as mute and unmute themselves.



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