Doing a webinar is a lot different from doing an in person presentation. I have done everything wrong in a webinar that you can do. Here are my tips for getting your first, or next, webinar done right.
1. Set the right context: Give people a heads up around how the webinar is going to work on what they need to do to prepare. Make sure you tell them to login to event well in advance is it typically takes time to access whatever platform you are using to run the meeting (Webex, GoToMeeting, etc.) Tell your audience what technology they will need to run the meeting effectively. I still run into participants who access my webinars on slow internet connections and outdated computers who then get frustrated when the technology doesn’t work well for them.
2. Create an action guide: I like to give my participants a two page hand out so that they can follow along with the material and fill in some blanks. In a virtual meeting, it can be easy to check or zone out so I like to give people something to do while they participate.
3.Get help: Don’t do a webinar by yourself. Have someone host the webinar or, at the very least, get someone to assist you with participant management. I tried to do my first webinar training by myself and it was stressful trying to manage participant’s needs and deliver great content at the same time. It doesn’t work!
4. Standard Slide Deck Rules Apply: Regardless if you are doing a live or online presentation, creating visually appealing slide deck is a must. I still see presenters create text heavy slides in presentations and those aren’t nearly as effective.
5. Don’t be boring: In a live presentation, you can feed off the energy of the crowd. Online, you have to bring the energy up a notch to ensure that you don’t sound monotone. If you get this wrong, no one will hear your presentation because they will be checked out or, worse, asleep.
6. Follow up: Send follow up info to your participants. If you told them you would send them a copy of the webinar then send it. Use this is an opportunity to reinforce the content as well as any offers that you made in training if it was for sales purposes.
There’s my tips learned through the school of hard knocks. With solid planning and a little help, you can nail your next online training and get your amazing content out to the world. Good luck!