Web based conferencing is a powerful tool that pretty much any business can benefit from. There are a few different ways to use them - you can promote your business, offer them as a product or use them within your business, such as for training purposes. If you're interested in creating a webinar of your own, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind along the way. Here's how you can create a highly valuable event your audience will love.
1. Decide on a topic to cover in your webinar. Keep in mind that less is more - tackling a specific issue will be more valuable to your attendees than if you tried to cover everything under the sun related to your industry. A specialized focus makes your webinar content much more easily digestible. Create a logical, sequential outline of the points you want to discuss and have it on hand as you conduct your event.
2. Streamline the process by having everything you need open. If there are any websites, programs or other resources you'll need to bring up while you're talking, load them before the webinar goes live. Don't hold up the show by pausing the presentation every time you move through to a new topic. Filling that silence at every interval is extremely awkward and makes your whole presentation appear unprofessional.
3. Schedule the webinar at a time that makes sense for your audience. Don't plan your event for a time when your target audience isn't going to be available. Keep their needs in mind. For example, if you're hosting a webinar geared toward teachers, it doesn't make much sense to schedule it during class hours. Sure, you can't please everyone - but you can aim for a time that works for as many of your prospective attendees as possible.
4. Collaborate with industry experts. There are likely several professionals that could bring something to the table for your event. Having guest speakers and technical professionals on board will bring you an end result that is much more professional. Most popular web conferencing services allow you to add different types of users, so you can have more than one “host” as well as all of the attendees.
5. Include your best content. The information you share within your webinar needs to be top notch. When people are investing their time and money into attending your event, it's up to you to make it worth their while. While you can include some information you've covered through other mediums - on your blog, for example - a lot of the content should be completely fresh and new.
6. Encourage interaction. After the presentation portion of your event, leave some time open for a Q & A session, and encourage attendees to ask the speakers questions related to the event. Try to keep answers brief to allow for as much interaction as possible - when you can, point listeners to comprehensive, genuinely helpful resources that will help their situation rather than going into an in-depth solution on the spot.
7. Send your attendees off with a call to action. A “homework” assignment that will help them in whatever area you're educating them on is one option. You can also encourage post-event community by setting up social media groups or message boards for attendees to interact and discuss what they learned through attending your webinar. This is just another seemingly small step that adds a ton of value to the whole experience.
As your event wraps up, don't forget to send each attendee an email to thank them for their participation. Congratulations! You have a successful web conference under your belt - likely with many more to come.
About the Author
Melissa Cameron is a web media strategist and freelance writer who specializes in helping green businesses flourish. She is happily married and lives with her family in the Midwest. She and her husband, Kent, have 2 sons. Kylie is in the process of checking out a ton of the popular video conferencing services on the market in preparation for future events.__________________________
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