We have a lot of users who ask, “What are macros and what can I do with them?” The short answer: Zetta macros are so powerful, what can’t you do? This week, we took a deep dive into Zetta macros as we covered how to create macros, where to add them, modern remote hybrid macro workflows, and other unique user implementations.
Starting with building macros, users can find the master macro window from the Configuration | Macros dropdown. As with most Zetta modules, make sure you select the station from the top right first. Due to the nature of a macro’s functionality, we typically recommend making macros station specific, unless there’s a more complex workflow. For example, if you are creating a Hot Spare activation macro, we want to define the specific station and then enable that station’s stream groups for Hot Sparing. Although engineers can choose between multiple asset types, like Songs, Links, Custom Asset Types, etc.., we primarily want to work under the Control dropdown so that we have access to Zetta’s Execute Commands. Work smarter, not harder and type to search for your desired Execute Commands. In this video, we created a Publish podcast macro. Essentially, we identified five different locations for each morning show, with a total of 25 “Best of Morning Show” exports. We used the Publish.MiniLogs Execute Command, left click and dragging each one to the left window, creating the “Podcast Macro.” There are two macro behaviors: Synchronous – or execute everything all at once – and Asynchronous and Play Through the Macro – execute everything one by one in order and if there is a piece of audio, play the audio and then trigger the remaining macro.
Once your macro is created, it’s time to find a destination for your newly created macro. There are multiple ways programmers can drag and drop or schedule a Zetta macro. From the same Macro window, users can select the Macro event type, choose their desired macro, and then drag and drop that macro throughout Zetta modules. Drag it into the Log module for a one-time execution or a Hot Key for future reference. As part of Zetta Hot Key’s new enhancement, users can now right click to edit a Hot Key and there’s an option to assign a macro to that Hot Key. If programmers want to schedule a macro, either for a one time or reoccurring event, if your station is a News/Talk format, then we’ll utilize Zetta’s Clocks to drag in your desired macro. If you’re GSelector integrated, then from the Clocks | Definition subtab, use the GSelector Control Clock Entry Type and select your desired macro, which is labeled as Zetta Macro (Your Macro Name).
Now that we’ve created and assigned/scheduled our macros, it’s time to execute our macros and really, there’s no wrong way to trigger macros. If you have a macro Hot Keys Bank, those Hot Keys are also available in Zetta2GO. So, if there’s breaking news, programmers can trigger a breaking new macro, changing the audio feed, and then return to their primary content from their couch by triggering a “Breaking News” and “Return to Programming” macro that were assigned to a macros Hot Keys Bank. Create a Hot Spare workflow so that there are two Hot Keys: Activate Hot Spare and Deactivate Hot Spare macros that again, can easily be triggered from the studio or remotely with Zetta2GO.
We also introduced other unique macro workflows, including Command Mappings and embedded macros. If you have a satellite show with contact closures, then assign macros to those contact closures via Configuration | System | Command Mappings. Or let’s say you have some reoccurring element whose audio is constantly overwritten, like a top of the hour news or weather update, then users can embed and lock macros to a specific timing mark in the asset. From the Metadata module, navigate to the Cue Points tab, create a new Cue Point using the Custom dropdown, find your desired macro, “Ok,” then right click on the pencil icon to Lock the Cue Point and macro.
As you can see, Zetta macros are a very powerful radio tool and we continue to evolve them, as well as introducing new workflows in newer Zetta builds, like the Zetta 5.22.1 Beta, which is now officially available. We’ve also released GSelector 5.1.0 Beta for users to test as well! If you want to become an RCS Beta user, reach out to your RCS contact, or stop by one of our booths during an upcoming radio conference. For a full list of RCS radio conferences, check our website www.RCSworks.com or follow us on social media. Speaking of social media, we’re always looking to showcase your studio with our #StudioSpotlight. Send your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. Otherwise, we’ll catch you next Thursday at 11am ET on Facebook Live, YouTube, Twitch and Twitter for another RCS Live.