Established 2007. Your video and hybrid event tech partner.

Ways to Engage Your Audience – The Basics

These days video is everywhere and as a viewer sometimes it’s hard not to get caught treating it as if you were watching TV.  Video, in learning especially, shouldn’t be a one sided affair and the easiest way to ensure that your viewers are paying attention is to keep them involved.  That’s where Mediasite’s range of engagement tools come in handy, so let’s go through some of your options.

Moderated Q&A

Moderated Q&A is one of the simplest ways to engage your audience.  Before you begin your presentation let people know that they can click on the speech bubble at the bottom of the screen and send you an email at any time.  They may want to ask a question or make a comment, it doesn’t matter, they just need to know the option is available to them.

Questions can be asked in both live and on demand recordings, and your options as a moderator include:

  • Exporting the questions to a spreadsheet
  • Printing a list of the questions
  • Forwarding questions to another person (e.g. a technical person, another staff member, etc.)
  • Replying to a question either from within the moderation portal or from your preferred email account



Polls are a good way to find out about your audience as a group, rather than information about a specific viewer, as there’s no way to tell who responded to the poll.  You can ask simple yes / no questions such as ‘did you understand this topic’, ‘did you enjoy the presentation’, ‘was the presentation useful in your current employment’.  It’s a great opportunity to run a quick census, ‘are you located in: Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne’, ‘how many of our webcasts have you participated in previously: 1 – 2, 3 – 5, 6 – 10, first time viewer’, ‘which field best describes your employment: doctor, nurse, administrator’.

Answers can be single or multi answer, and you can list as many choices as required.  There’s also no limit on how many poll questions you can have and they can be taken at any time during a presentation.

Results can be exported to a spreadsheet or viewed from within the Mediasite portal and My Mediasite.  There is also the option to link to external polls, such as Survey Monkey.


Quizzes work really well in a learning environment, whether it be University or TAFE or a professional development event, as unlike polls, you can see exactly who took the quiz and what their answers and results were.


There are three options when creating quizzes:

  • Study Guide
  • Assessment
  • % Scored

You can then choose from a range of options such as requesting that the quiz be submitted, whether they can edit their answers before submission, and seeing the correct answers at the end, to name a few.

Quizzes are inserted at a designated time within the video and you can have as many quizzes as you want, with each quiz having as many questions as required.  Answers can be weighted to show importance (handy if it’s being used as a graded assessment), and like polls they can be single or multi answer or yes / no, true / false types of questions.

Results can be exported to Excel for record keeping purposes, grading, etc., at any time during the life of the presentation.



Annotations can be turned on or off and can be moderated or unmoderated.  You can also choose to allow discussions on your annotations.  The annotation will appear to the left of the video screen at the time requested by the creator.  Viewers can choose to hide annotations while watching a presentation, and then reveal them again by clicking on the i in the top left hand corner at any time.  Depending on the security of the presentation annotations can be set to public or private.


Similar to what you’d see in YouTube, users can add comments when viewing a presentation from within a showcase.  Comments can then be replied to, creating a discussion thread.  Viewers can also choose whether to time stamp their comment so that people know which part of the presentation they were talking about.  You can also decide whether you want to moderate these comments or not, but note that this feature is only available to authenticated users.


So there’s a basic list of Mediasite tools to help you engage your audience.  The next step is to give them a go.  Get into My Mediasite and create a test presentation (or make a copy of one of your current presentations) and start playing around.  If you’d like to use any of these but aren’t sure where to find them or how they could work for you please don’t hesitate to contact us for some training or brainstorming.  The possibilities are endless, the only question is where do you start!

For those of you who may already be using some of these tools and would like to know how else to keep your audience active during a presentation click here for the second part in our Ways To Engage Your Audience series.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.