Beginner’s Guide on How to Host A Successful Webinar.
By Stacy Ketiku
Including a webinar as part of your content marketing strategy is a great way to engage with your audience and generate relevant leads. It creates an avenue for interaction but before diving into the production of a successful webinar, you need to ensure that you ultimately need one and outline the effects you expect the presentation to have on your business; however, not all content requires a webinar. Some contents are best left as blog posts or social media content and do not need to be discussed with a Live audience. A webinar is an interactive online seminar that anyone with an internet connection and required software can participate in over the web. The use of Webinar is gradually getting popular among brands but like any other platform for disseminating content, a successful webinar must be strategically planned and thoroughly prepared for with all the following taken into consideration.
Choose an Irresistible Topic and Facilitator:
An irresistible topic is one that catches your audience’s attention at first sight and is able to offer them the value that is worth the duration they will be spending while attending to your webinar. Everyone is preoccupied with various activities and won’t waste their time listening to some sort of content that has no direct impact on them or doesn’t solve a problem they are actively passing through. Therefore, your topic must be interesting enough to hold their attention from start to finish. However, you might have a great topic but without a speaker who has vast knowledge in such an area, things could get all messed up and go left.
After a topic has been chosen, determine if you (the host) will also be the speaker/facilitator. If you are choosing a speaker, select one that has both theoretical and practical knowledge of the topic as well as human relations and time management skills. No one wants to listen to a boring speech; they’ll zone out on you. A speaker might have all the required qualities but without investing quality time into preparation and intentional practice, they are doomed to flop.
Select A Host for Your Webinar
There are a couple of webinar hosts available online, however, we will be recommending Zoom and Skype which we use for our webinars or online meetings with clients and audiences. In selecting a platform, you must consider the number of participants your chosen platform allows for a free and premium plan as well as if you will be able to share your presentation slides with your audience.
Audience and Publicity
Your topic or focus will determine who your audience will be and after deciding on your audience, you will need to come up with a publicity strategy to make your target audience aware of your upcoming webinar. While scheduling the date and time, ensure you consider the time zones of audiences in various parts of the world. You could publicise this via social media or email marketing and create a landing page where interested people can sign up for your upcoming webinar.
Preparation and Presentation
The ideal duration of a webinar is between 40-60 minutes and the time could be broken down into the following: 8 minutes for introducing yourself and brand/product, including the objective of the webinar, 32 minutes for the main discussion and slide presentation, while the question and answer session could last for about 15 mins, with the remaining 5 minutes to appreciate them for participating in your webinar. You should share your presentation slides with your audience to help them relate to what you are discussing or save yourself if you are camera shy and don’t want to be the main focus throughout the webinar.
There are a lot of software that can be used to create your presentation slides but we enjoy using Microsoft PowerPoint or Canva because they have amazing editable templates and does not require you to be a professional graphics designer to create slides for a successful webinar presentation. Your network connection must also be strong and ensure that your power supply is reliable to avoid touching stories. If your built-in webcam can’t produce the kind of quality you need then you should purchase an external webcam that works with Bluetooth or USB connection. Bright lighting, a quality microphone, a serene environment and aesthetic background (in case you are unable to get a nice-looking space for your presentation, you could improvise using a backdrop) is of utmost importance to a brillant presentation.
In conclusion, a successful webinar hosted by a brand for other businesses or clients should have goals which could be to educate, demonstrate, or instruct them. It should also give room for interaction so that an audience can learn more about your product or service by asking questions. We’ll love to hear about your experience the next time you host a webinar.