A webinar is a dynamic and budget-friendly way to convey information or provide training to a geographically-dispersed audience, educate existing or potential customers, do lead generation and convert new contacts to profit-generating customers.
For first-timers, conducting a webinar can be just as nerve-wracking as doing an actual physical presentation in front of strangers. Following are 9 essential tips to help you organize and successfully conduct your very first webinar:
1. Don’t use second-rate webinar technologies. You’ll be frustrating your audience if you keep having broken connections during the actual webinar. Adobe Connect, WebEx, GoToWebinar & Infinite are great software that lets you share your desktop with up to 1000 webinar attendees.
2. Clean your slides and prepare everything beforehand. Don’t make your slides too wordy, focus on the important stuff. Also, load up your presentation and exercises beforehand. If you’re conducting a paid webinar, your attendees are paying for every minute of your presentation, make it worth their while.
3. Always have a co-facilitator. It’s wise to have a partner when conducting a webinar. One should do the actual presentation, while the other should focus on answering chat conversations and handling the technical stuff.
4. Schedule a dry run and prepare for the worst. Test out the software you’ll be using days before the actual webinar. It’s also good to have a dry run, so that you can work on your pacing.
Just in case anything happens with the connection during the seminar, make sure that you give every attendee a copy of the presentation.
5. Show enthusiasm. When presenting, be lively and enthusiastic so that your listeners are drawn in. Keep the energy level up!
6. Leave plenty of time for Q&A. Make sure that you inform your audience that you’ll be having Q&A after the presentation so that they can jot down and prepare their questions. You can use the 50/50 approach – half the time for your presentation, the second half for questions and answers.
7. Record it all. Most webinar attendees ask for a transcript of the session so make sure that you record yours. You can use the built-in recorder of the webinar software you’re using or your computer’s microphone paired with a recording software like Audacity.
8. End with a call to action. This is your chance to tell your attendees what you want them to do – let them visit your site, share more links or suggest reading materials that’ll give them deeper information about the things you discussed, or tell them about your upcoming webinars and events.
9. Enjoy it. Don’t worry too much. Webinar attendees are actually patient, they know that things can go wrong during live events. Be yourself, be confident. Enjoy the whole experience.