A live chat is a chat room organized and moderated in real-time to have an in-depth qualitative discussion with an intimate group of community members.
- Navigate to the Live Chats tab in Activities.
- To create a new Live Chat, click the "+" button on the left-hand side of the screen.
New Live Chat Details
- Add a Title and Description. The Description will display on the Live Chat Landing Page. This is where members can RSVP for the live chat.
IMPORTANT: Members may only access Live Chats from a desktop or laptop computer. Members will NOT be able to participate from a mobile device. We recommend emphasizing this to members both in the Live Chat Description and in any relevant email communications.
- Image or Video: Add an image or video to display on the Landing Page. This media will display along with the Description.
- Add to Topic: By default, Live Chats are added to the "Live Chat" category, but you may also choose to add the Live Chat to one or more Topics. Select any Topics you want to add the Live Chat to.
- Live Chat Options: To help moderators and clients stand out during a live chat from members, choose a default background color that will display for all moderators and clients.
During the live chat, manually change the background color per individual moderator or client if you would like any mod/clients to stand out from the others.
- Activity Card Options: Similar to other activities, set your Activity Card options, which include the activity card image, featured image, featured button call-to-action, and activity card description. Set these accordingly.
- Session Ended Message: Provide a Title and Description, which will display to members after the live chat has ended.
- Session Full Message: Set a maximum number of members that can join the live chat. If a maximum is set, enter Title and Description for a message that would display to members who attempt to join the live chat once the maximum has been reached.
IMPORTANT: When many members attempt to join a live chat session simultaneously, the actual number of members allowed into the session may exceed the maximum you set. To account for this, we would recommend setting your maximum number 2-3 members lower than your actual desired maximum.
- Be sure to select Save & Continue.
Live Chat Steps
Different sections or events in the live chat are called Steps. Choose to add a Text Step, a Poll Step, or a Media Step. During the live chat, the chat happens on the right-hand side of the screen, while the left-hand side of the screen is reserved for displaying the steps.
A text step is just like it sounds—a piece of text that can be displayed to members. This is useful for content that members should be able to refer back to (like a set of questions) or a welcome message.
Member view of text step
A poll step is an imported Qualtrics or Alchemer survey for short surveys to be taken during the live chat.
IMPORTANT: Please note that only members will be able to see the actual survey questions in a poll step. Moderators will see a blank screen in its place as pictured below.
Poll Step: Member View
Poll Step: Moderator View
A media step is any media displayed to members during the live chat. This could be an image or video you uploaded, a YouTube video, or a PowerPoint presentation.
Media Step: Member View
Invite to Live Chat
Either invite all community members or select invitees. If you choose to invite select invitees, either invite a group or individual members. Groups must be created before you may select them here (related articles: Dynamic Groups, Static Groups).
Schedule Live Chat
You have two dates to schedule—your Post Date and your Session Start Date.
- Your Post Date is the date and time that your content will appear in the community and be available to members to view.
- The Session Start Date is the day and time of your live chat. Members who register for the event are able to add a calendar item to Outlook, Google Calendar, Yahoo! Calendar, Hotmail Calendar, or iCal calendar, so be sure to put the correct date down!
- Select Save and Exit.
End Live Chat
To properly close a Live Chat, the Live Chat moderator needs to click End Session inside of the Live Chat (not the ‘close’ button in admin).
Automatic Live Chat Emails
Members who register for your live chat will automatically receive the following System Emails:
- Live Chat Reminder: This email sends to community members who RSVP with “Yes” or “Maybe” to a Live Chat. This email will send both 24 hours and 1 hour before the scheduled live chat will begin.
- Live Chat RSVP Confirmation: This email sends to community members immediately after they RSVP with “Yes” or “Maybe” to a Live Chat.
View and customize these emails in the platform under Comm Center > System.
Copy a Live Chat
Copying an existing live chat will duplicate all of its text, settings, and steps (including media and polls). Simply go to the Actions dropdown menu and select Copy.