How to use the Zoom Virtual Background Feature

So you can have some fun or look like a total pro.

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If you’ve been on a Zoom meeting lately you may have noticed some attendees appear to be sat on tropical beaches, or in deserted cafes and football grounds. Or, some may have professionally branded backgrounds.

This is all thanks to Zoom’s virtual background feature and we’re going to explain how to use it.

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What do you need?

To use the virtual background you need either a video or photo and ideally a green screen. There aren’t any size limits to what you use. However, it’s recommended that your video is set to a 16:9 ratio, and images are sized to 1920 x 1080 pixels.

Using a green screen or alternatively, a green wall, gives you the best end result. It’s also necessary if you have an older computer or operating system as it takes a lot of processing power to create a virtual background without one. And some computers don’t have the power to do it.

You can pick up a green screen relatively cheaply on the likes of Amazon. Or, it could be a good opportunity to paint an office wall in an interesting colour.

Zoom Virtual Background

How To Use The Zoom Virtual Background

The first thing you need to do is upload your background file. To do this:

– Log into your Zoom app

– Go to settings

– Click on ‘virtual background’

– Hit the + button.

You’ll then be able to upload your file and check it works.

Select your uploaded file and it should automatically fill your background in the video preview screen. If it doesn’t then you’ll only see your file on parts of your background and you may receive a pop up advising that your computer doesn’t meet requirements. In this case, you’ll need to use a green screen, or tell Zoom what colour to use from your real-life background as your makeshift green screen.

If you’re manually selecting a colour from your background to use as a ‘green screen’ you will need to have a clean, solid colour behind you.

Make sure you don’t use neutrals, especially white, as it will pick up the whites of your eyes as part of the background. Freaky! Ideally, you want a solid green colour or failing that, vivid blue. These colours are ideal as they aren’t naturally found on people, so the system won’t confuse your face with something it needs to overlay.

BONUS TIP
If you’re using a green screen make sure you don’t wear anything that matches the colour…

…It’s an interesting look, but not one we’d recommend.

Why Is My Virtual Background Backwards?

The ‘mirror my video’ option is selected. Without this function switched on when you move left in real life, the video version of you will move right. So, if your brain can’t quite deal with that then you need to have this function ticked. Don’t worry about the fact that your background is displaying as backwards to you, it will be displaying the correct way to the other people in the meeting.

What’s The Point In A Virtual Background?

Why not just use something like a roll out banner?
The beauty of a virtual background, especially for business, is that you can change the message relatively cheaply and quickly. Meaning you can use it to promote offers, new services, and even switch it up easily if you run multiple businesses and are changing hats on back to back meetings. It’s incredibly versatile and has a lot more impact that a banner rolled out behind you.

Do you want a professionally designed background?
We’re offering professional, branded backgrounds for just £100. Drop us a message below and let us make you look like a pro at your next meeting.
Plus, if you found this useful be sure to subscribe to our free monthly newsletter so you don’t miss our next articles.

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