Three Essentials to Effective Webinars

After experiencing webinars first hand as a guest, and in preparation for the WBDC’s webinar series launch coming in January, I have compiled a brief list of the “Three Essentials to Effective Webinars” that any organization or business should keep in mind when planning:

  1. Know your audience:  Whether you’re preparing an entire webinar series or just getting your toes wet with a single session, you should research where the market is lacking and combine that with your expertise.  There are clearly fields of knowledge that are saturated with information, like “home based businesses” so even if that is your expertise perhaps trying to tie it in with a specific industry or field.  For instance, “Social Media Marketing for Home-Based Businesses.”  Collaborate with someone familiar with social media strategies and work together to create a great webinar.
  2. Quality above all else:  This means quality audio equipment, quality graphics and quality takeaways.  I recently sat in on a webinar about social media and was blown away by the poor sound quality.  It completely distracted from the subject being discussed.  On top of bad sound quality, the slides were moving at a different pace to the speaker’s discussion, making it difficult to follow and challenging to take notes.  Quality does not mean spending a lot of money on audio equipment or video software, but simply taking the time to test out what you have and adjust accordingly.  Quality takeaways are what you give your attendees.  Do they walk away feeling like they learned something or that they just wasted an hour of their day hearing something they already knew?  Be sure to describe your webinar accurately so people don’t join under false pretences, which can make for unhappy feedback.
  3. Engagement: The main perk of doing webinars vs, “how-to” videos is the two-way communication.  The instant engagement adds a level of enrichment that videos lack.  Make your webinar full of information and be prepared to answer questions and receive different opinions on the subject.  Just because you are an expert doesn’t mean you know everything!  Engagement should go beyond the one hour webinar: create a call to action for attendees.  Maybe you want them to leave questions on your blog, direct them to do so in a way that isn’t pushy and blatantly saying you want more traffic to your blog. Perhaps write a supplemental blog post that publishes immediately following the webinar with a question sheet for attendees.  People enjoy giving their opinion, especially online!

Keep these three tips in mind when you go to create your webinars and let us know how it goes!  Sit in on one of our webinars starting in January, if you’re looking to learn more about starting and growing your business.   We encourage your feedback!  And if you have any more tips, put them below!

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2 Comments

Filed under Business, Business Start-up, Entrepreneur, Established Business, Marketing, Small Business, Technology, Uncategorized, WBDC, Webinar

2 responses to “Three Essentials to Effective Webinars

  1. Is there a better word to use than “webinar”? I wonder if it is just me that hears that word and cringes like nails on a chalk board?

    This is all very useful information. Something I would add to this is the importance of making sure your webinar is accessible by a slightly trained monkey. In my experience over the years a webinar in the truest sense is more than a 1 click and your in type of solution. Anything that adds user steps tends to drop the success rate of getting people in.

    Have you got any tips on what services are easier to get in to? That is where I find people are lost quickly.

    • Another title for “webinar” could be a “web-based workshop” or “web-based lecture”. It could vary depending on what the format is. If it’s a lecture with a simple q & a afterwards then definitely describe it as “web-based lecture” or if it’s more of a two way conversation, as most are, I would use terms like workshop, interactive, etc. I agree the process needs to be as accessible as possible to make it less scary for those that may be first time users. is a great site to do webinars through. There is also another one I recently explored and will have to get back to you on the name of it. We have also started exploring different options through Google. They have added many features that could possibly make it easy to host webinars through Google Hangouts, documents, calendar, etc. It’s just a matter of streamlining the process for both the creator and attendants. The plus side of using Google is that it’s free, whereas other hosting sites are not. Thanks for reading!
      -Bethany

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