8 Essential Webinar Features Pro Hosts Can’t Live Without

Not all webinars are created equal. One must make use of a variety of webinar features available today in order to engage and captivate a potentially global audience. Here are eight webinar features that pro hosts cannot afford to live without.

 

Ability to Customize Each Webinar

As a host, you’ll want to choose a webinar software that allows you to customize all aspects of your webinar to emulate your company’s design aesthetic.

These webinar features will enhance the overall professional image that you are trying to project. It will also help your participants feel more connected with you as the presenter.

Customizable webinar features within a quality webinar software include: the ability to add in logos/branding, change theme colors, adjust the landing page layout, and customize invitation and reminder emails in one seamless format.

These are just a few of the areas that a webinar can be customized. The more customizable webinar features a webinar software offers, the better.

Ability to Upload Handouts

Your webinar participants’ time is valuable. Preparing your attendees for your webinar ahead of time is always a good idea. This principle goes for almost every type of online meeting or webinar imaginable; from comprehensive staff training to marketing presentations and virtually everything in between.

You will spend a great deal of time and energy getting people to register and attend your webinar. You’l want to provide them with a teaser that encourages them to show up at the appointed hour. This teaser can be something as simple as a handout.

Remember that everyone likes “free stuff”. If you are hosting a webinar for promotional purposes, a handout can serve as a free enticement to get participants to join your session. By the same token, staff members who are going to attend your webinar want to be prepared for the meeting in order to maximize their time.

 

Ability to Conduct Live Polls of the Audience

Polling is a great way to increase participant engagement in your webinar. Many webinar platforms today have live polling as one of their core webinar features, and for a good reason.

A poll provides presenters the opportunity to take a quick break during the webinar and obtain some instant feedback from the participants.

This will connect the audience to what is being said while providing a valuable opportunity for the presenter to know whether he or she is meeting the objectives of the presentation. You will also find that the type real time responses received by a poll will provide some much-needed input on important topics that are being covered during the webinar itself.

Polling and other engaging, real-time webinar features are essential for pro hosts because the results they generate can be useful in a myriad of ways. If you are giving a sales presentation, the sales team can use the responses that are given when they head out to follow up on leads after the webinar is complete. Future training can be tweaked, with certain items being changed or left alone, based on the feedback that is given by participants in real time. Beyond this, people enjoy polls. It makes them feel a part of something, and it gives them a rationale for participating in the webinar beyond just being a passive listener.

 

Ability to Use a Survey to Ask for Instant Feedback

A webinar should not be considered “over” once the final participant leaves the room. A good webinar host will spend time evaluating their presentation, analyzing what went well and what should be improved upon.

In addition to the analytics you collect from your webinar software, it’s also important to gain the perspective of your participants directly. Survey-related webinar features will help you achieve this.

You should be able to instantly send out a survey that is easy for each individual to complete right after the webinar has ended. You can ask a few questions that are appropriate to the material you have covered and are unique to your organization. This will allow you, as the host, to ascertain what the audience enjoyed about the webinar. At the same time, a survey will let you know what components did not have as positive an impact as you would have hoped.

A survey is useful in so many ways.

As a host, you need to gain the perspective of your participants because that will very likely determine future attendance. This is particularly true if you are conducting a sales oriented presentation, and is especially relevant if you are charging participants to attend the webinar. Many programs will give you the ability to ask up to 25 questions on a survey. The choice is up to you how many you would like to include, but remember that your participant’s time is valuable. They also may be unwilling to complete a lengthy survey, but will gladly take the time to fill in a shorter one for you. The responses will be worth it in the end and will give you some much-needed data as you go to plan your next webinar.

Ability to Record Your Webinars and Host Recurring Webinars

Not everyone can attend your webinar live, nor do they necessarily need to. One of the most useful webinar features professional hosts require is the ability to record webinars.

As a host, you want to make it as easy as possible for your registrants to view your webinar. When schedules don’t align it’s important to share a recorded version of the webinar for those who missed out on the live event.

Recorded content also has the added benefit of being “editable”. Editing your recording helps ensure your webinar is exactly what you want, prior to publishing it online for the world to see.

Webinars that have already been recorded are also a great way to increase your subscriber base. You can offer them online as an incentive for people to visit your own website and learn more about what you have to offer.

If you are in the education business, a recorded webinar can be sold to participants to download and view at their convenience. As you can tell, the possibilities are endless for a recorded, recurring, hybrid, and anytime webinar. As a result, this is one of the most important webinar features that no professional host should be without.

 

Ability to Share Your Screen With Participants

One of the biggest advantages of hosting webinars is being able to talk to participants around the world simultaneously. To be effective, however, the host needs to be able to demonstrate what they are talking about.

This has been one of the most commonly cited drawbacks of a webinar that participants have reported through the years. They appreciate the information that is being given to them, but they often feel a disconnect as a result of not being able to see certain items that the presenter is talking about.

However, thanks to modern webinar features included with many webinar programs today, sharing your screen is now a possibility.

By sharing your screen, you will not just be telling your audience important concepts. You will finally be able to show them. At any point during the presentation, you will be able to demonstrate what is taking place on your screen and every participant will be able to see it in real time. When you are ready to take away the screen sharing feature, you can do that instantly as well. This is also a useful feature when you are recording a webinar, as you can use your screen as a type of whiteboard. This increases the retention rate of information, and it also enhances the engagement level of the audience.

Ability to Add Seamless Email Integration

Webinars are online events that need to be subscribed to. The easiest and most popular way of doing this is via email. This is why a professional host needs to be able to integrate the functionality of a webinar within the context of most popular email programs in existence today.

This is a way to increase subscriber rates, as it will be easy for participants to indicate their interest in and sign up for the webinar. This feature should allow you, as the host, to automatically add those who have registered for the webinar to your email list. This will then generate a message from you to indicate important access instructions as the time and day of the webinar draws closer.

Currently, email integration works nicely with the following programs: MailChimp, Infusionsoft, Aweber, ActiveCampaign, ConvertKit, HubSpot, ConstantContact, and GetResponse.

You can use any of these and be able to email all registered attendees at any time effortlessly. At the same time, you can automate the process to have your email sent out at set times. Simply draft what you want to say and tell the webinar to send out the email at predetermined times.

This enhances the professional image that you are trying to project, in addition to keeping the participants informed of what is going on.

 

Ability to Add Social Media integration

It is no secret that social media has invaded nearly every aspect of modern society today. As a webinar host, you will want to put this to your advantage by integrating ads directly into popular platforms, such as Facebook.

A useful feature that you need to have, as a professional host, is the ability to add a tracking pixel, connected to Facebook, which will actually link ads directly to your webinar itself. This is a great way to increase your visibility and enhance your marketing potential. You will also receive analytical information that will enable you to see how effective the campaign has become and to make operating decisions to enhance your future webinar offerings.

 

There are new webinar features being added every year that make webinars an even more effective meeting strategy than ever before. You will want to examine each available feature within the context of your unique needs to determine how best to make use of them. Remember that webinars do bring many advantages to the table in comparison to in-person meetings, but they do require an effective use of available webinar features.

 

 

Sources:

 

https://www.elegantthemes.com/blog/resources/the-15-best-webinar-software-products-from-around-the-web

 

Why B2B Webinars Work: The Guide to Effectively Reaching Your Market Online

Developing an effective business-to-business (or B2B) marketing mix requires careful planning, strategizing, and execution. This is also true for B2B webinars.

Organizations that promote directly to consumers (B2C) only have to convince an individual that their services and products deserve attention. However, successfully marketing to another company (B2B) often means establishing brand recognition and credibility within several job functions and throughout multiple departments.

Fortunately, the return on investment (or ROI) is often well worth the additional efforts. Total quantities purchased in a B2B model often far exceed those in a consumer-based setup as companies often buy in bulk to fulfill large contracts.

Because the sales process in a B2B approach can often prove far more intricate and time consuming than direct selling to consumers, it’s critical to implement a thorough marketing plan that drivers brand recognition and delivers results.

For entrepreneurs in virtually every industry, this means incorporating B2B webinars into corporate online promotional initiatives.

 

Understand the Benefits of B2B Webinars

B2B webinars grant companies an opportunity to target and educate a specific audience on the benefits and advantages of their specific corporate offerings. If you’re not currently utilizing video conferencing to extend the reach and recognition of your brand, it may be time to start.

Using B2B webinars in your marketing strategy offers several invaluable advantages including:

 

Streamlined and Affordable Production

The first thing many entrepreneurs notice when utilizing b2b webinars in their marketing strategies? Just how easy and affordable they are to produce.

In-person meetings definitely bring a distinctive and comprehensive range of advantages; however, coordinating the logistics of a face-to-face appointment can prove challenging at best.

Getting time on everyone’s already-busy schedules can seem an impossible feat. Additionally, live meetings bring with them a relatively expensive price tag, particularly when it comes to travel expenses.

Webinars can quickly minimize costs. Hosts only need webinar software and a few other items to go live at any time and from any place.

 

Connection with a Broader Audience

As already mentioned, in-person meetings and appointments are often highly sought after, but not always possible due to time and expense. Also, face-to-face engagements can have limited audience reach.

B2B webinars instantly eliminate restrictions on how many people you can reach at once.

A single session allows you to connect with as many prospects as you’d like; attendees simply have to log in at an appointed time wherever they’ll have access to a computer.

Not only can you promote your business directly to several organizations at the same time, B2B webinars also allow you to connect with multiple locations of the same company simultaneously to streamline the purchasing decision-making process and ensure everyone receives identical information.

 

Dialogue with Interested Participants

Some marketing resources, such as printed materials and emails, only allow businesses to talk at an audience. Webinars grant a chance to talk with an audience.

During your B2B webinars you’ll be able to pitch your products and create a dialogue with anyone tuning in.

Beyond general discussions, a well-appointed session also offers designated question and answer segments to enhance attendee engagement and participation.

 

New Lead Cultivation

Webinars that focus on a specific topic or industry trend not only boost audience attendance, they also offer a relatively effortless way to generate new leads and prospects within your organization.

As the host of the webinar, you can ask interested guests to register for your event in advance. Customize your registration form to ask for the most relevant lead information such as contact information, job title, and other critical details for follow up at a later date.

Customize Webinar Registration

 

Strengthened Current Partnerships

B2B webinars aren’t only beneficial when cultivating new prospects; this online resource can also be used to nurture and strengthen the professional relationships you already have.

Offering exclusive webinars to existing clients can help you nurture your current partnerships and further develop brand loyalty within your consumer base.

Also, B2B webinars can be used far beyond the sales pitch; many business owners actually use webinars as a powerful resource to train customers on how to use products or even troubleshoot solutions with clients as needed. Your clients will appreciate knowing that they have access to you and your organization whenever they need it.

 

Establish Industry Authority

Many businesses claim industry authority; however, few have the fortitude to prove it on a consistent level.

B2B webinars allow you to do just that; you can host as many webinar as you’d like on a slew of hot industry topics and trends. You’ll have the opportunity to connect with, inform, and educate your audience on what’s up and coming in your designated field, instantly establishing your brand as in-the-know experts. In no time, you’ll become a Thought Leader in your industry.

 

Live Demonstrations

Why simply tell consumers how great your products are when you can use your webinar session to show them. Unlike other marketing materials that only offer static lists and outlines, B2B webinars provide a dynamic forum for live product launches and demonstrations.

Why simply tell customers how great your products are wen you can use your webinar session to show them

Sustainable Marketing Impact

Most importantly, the impact of B2B webinars lasts well beyond the event itself.

B2B webinars can be recorded and filed for use at later dates, allowing your business an opportunity to connect and engage with other businesses in the future without having to regenerate new content.

 

Tips To Reach Your B2B Market Online

Once you’ve made the decision to leverage the power of B2B webinars, it’s critical to create an initiative focused on reaping optimal return on investment.

When developing your webinar, include a few proven tactics to ensure you maximize results and overall impact, such as:

 

Determine Preliminary (But Important) Logistics

The logistics and details are just as vital as the content of your B2B webinars. There are a slew of items to consider when putting together your hosting plan.

  1. Choosing a Topic: First on your details checklist? Picking a topic. What you will discuss will play a major role in generating attendee interest. Think about your targeted audience demographic and select a topic that will solve a relevant problem for them.
  2. Webinar Agenda/Speakers: Now is the time to think about if your webinar will be a solo act, or a group collaboration. Once you’ve zeroed in on the topic you’d like to explore, you should consider whether you’d like to invite guest panelists to participate in your discussion with you. Having guest speakers can add dimension to your presentation, diversity the discussion, and encourage more businesses to tune in to hear what you have to have to offer.
  3. Scheduling Details: You will also want to consider scheduling details during the planning phase. Yes, it’s easy for key members at various companies to tune into a webinar. However, you will still want to think about the best time host your event so as not to overwhelm everyone’s already full daily agendas. Avoid Fridays and Monday sessions whenever possible and consider morning time slots to boost your potential audience turnout.
  4. Webinar Time: Finally, when coordinating the details of your B2B webinars, pay careful attention to length of your overall presentation. Limit your webinar to 60 minutes or less to maintain attention with your guests from start to finish.

 

Create Original Content


Once you’ve decided what you’ll talk about, you’re ready to begin crafting together your marketing message for the masses.

Don’t simply regurgitate old promotional missives and slideshows. Instead, pique interest and maximize impact by creating original, thought-provoking content for your B2B webinars.

Effective B2B webinars seamlessly blends visual and audio components. As you create your event, consider utilizing a combination of compelling graphics, statistics, live product demonstrations, and written slides to deliver a multi-sensory experience to your listeners.

Also, don’t miss out on an opportunity to connect directly with your audience when developing your presentation. Always set aside specific times to host question and answer segments. Knowing that they will have time designated for inquiries will help hold their attention throughout the entire session.

 

Promote Your B2B Webinars

Effectively promoting your upcoming B2B webinars will ensure overall event success.

Many attendees will often signup on the actual day of your session. It’s important to start marketing your efforts early and continue them right up until you go live.

Use all resources available to you including social media pages, email invitations, blogs, and even a registration-landing page specifically designed to log attendees as well as their contact information for future lead follow up.

 

Rehearse Your Delivery

Never go into live B2B webinars without practicing beforehand.

Webinars are user-friendly and intuitive; however, you will still want to go through the hosting process to ensure you know exactly what to do on event day. Additionally, you and any guest speakers you may have will also want to rehearse individual sections of the presentation to gauge duration of event as well as to identify if there are sections that may need some tweaking to ensure you make the best impact possible on listeners.

 

Follow Up

Remember all the leads you collected during the event registration process? It’s important to follow up on every single one of them.

Reach out to every contact (even multiple contacts at the same organization) to keep the conversation going with prospects.

Additionally, following up allows you to connect with businesses contacts may have registered for the event but didn’t have the chance to actually tune in furthering the reach of your online marketing efforts.

 

Repurpose B2B Webinars

Once you’ve hosted your webinar, be sure to file your B2B webinars in an easily accessible location.

As a marketer or sales representative, you are constantly directing new potential customers into your sales funnel.

Recreating relevant B2B webinars with each new prospect can prove a major waste of time and resources. Repurposing recorded webinars as needed to connect with other businesses as a way to maximize results while minimizing expense.

Put easily accessible versions of your demonstration on your social media pages, blog, and website to ensure you get the most mileage possible out of this effectively online marketing tool.

 

Start Hosting!

To facilitate amazing B2B webinars, you’ll need powerful webinar software. BigMarker is a modern webinar platform that offers a full stack of marketing tools to help you maximize your ROI. Start your 14-day free trial today or send us a message if you’d like help getting started.

Resources

http://www.chiefmarketer.com/4-reasons-b2c-marketers-use-webinars-lead-gen/
https://hingemarketing.com/blog/story/why-should-webinars-be-apart-of-your-b2b-content-marketing-strategy

Tips and Tricks for Keeping Your Online Audience Engaged Throughout Your Entire Webinar

Webinars offer an ideal way to connect with an online audience that often surpasses live gatherings, which makes them the meeting of choice for many.

This is especially true for speakers motivated to connect with as many participants as possible in a single gathering. However, keeping an online audience engaged can be tricky. That’s why we’re sharing some of our key tips and tricks for keeping an online audience engaged throughout your entire webinar.

Identifying the Challenges

Although webinars offer significant benefits over live meetings, it’s important to remember that there are some unique challenges to consider when presenting a webinar to an online audience.

With a screen (and potentially hundreds of miles) between you and listeners, zoning out during a webinar can be commonplace amongst an online audience. Simply pushing the mute button on a session is all it takes to multi-task during a webinar that isn’t completely holding your audience’s attention.

In order to avoid the dreaded webinar “tune out,” you will have to up your engagement game during the session. This will ensure your online audience remains plugged in during your entire demonstration. Implementing several proven tips and tricks for keeping your online audience engaged throughout your entire webinar can help keep everyone on task.

When planning for success with your next webinar, consider the following advice:

 

What’s Your Point?

Don’t go into your webinar with an extensive range of topics and ideas you’d like to cover during your session.

Going too broad with your dialogue can almost guarantee you’ll lose the attention of your listeners at various points if they determine that what you’re talking about isn’t relevant or interesting to them personally.

When choosing the topic of your presentation, get as specific as possible so all users logging in understand exactly what they will be listening to during your time together. Also, know going into the topics selection process that pinpointing an outline that works for everyone is virtually impossible.

It’s better to develop a webinar that makes a significant impact on a smaller audience than one that covers far too much information and loses traction with a larger one. If you’re not sure how to select an engaging topic that will resonate with your niche, ask.

Consult with your team for ideas or send along a survey directly to your demographic to ask what they want to know more about so you can focus your event accordingly.

 

Get Specific About Your Benefits

Choosing the right topic is only the first step in successfully connecting with your listeners. Beyond the points you’ll discuss in your session, you will also want to outline why it’s your online audience’s best interest to attend.

Get specific about what each listener in your online audience will reap from attending your webinar. Seeing the list of benefits offered by your conference will pique their interest and help keep them on point with you throughout the discussion.

 

Command Attention Right at the Start

Don’t rely on a long buildup to captivate your online audience.

Make it your mission to command attention as soon as you start speaking. Avoid spending too much time with introductions and miscellaneous details.

Instead, get the intros done quickly, move on to an engaging (albeit succinct) anecdote and then dig into the meat of your presentation. Keep it concise to let attendees know right at the start you won’t be wasting precious time on monotonous details and will be keeping the discussion moving forward. It’s an excellent way to keep them listening.

 

Make it a Dialogue, Not a Monologue

allow webinar participants to submit questions and responses in real time

It’s no secret that the discussions we remember most are the ones we get a chance to participate in; the same holds true for your webinar’s online audience.

As a presenter, you have options. You can choose to speak at them, droning on (and on…and on…) about countless details and facts and risk losing their attention; or, you can speak with them, continuously asking for their input, feedback and opinions to ensure they stay plugged in no matter how long the presentation runs.

You can actually use your webinar software to help with this; today’s webinar technology allows your participants to submit questions and responses in real time. As a host, make moderating and integrating these comments a priority so your attendees remain attentive.

 

Stay Charged!

Don’t underestimate your responsibility to keep everyone listening.

Rule of thumb: it’s not (entirely) about what you say…it really is how you say it. Even the most compelling presentation can have lackluster results if it’s delivered with ho-hum energy. Keeping your online audience engaged is the key to an effective webinar.

Do your part; make an effort to keep your energy level up when speaking to keep your participants connected to what you have to say.

Turn nervousness into excitement by moving around when speaking. Also, whenever possible, create natural-feeling interruptions to help break up the potential monotony of too many consecutive slides. This will help keep your participants plugged-in and on their toes.

Finally, repeat your previous point before moving on to your next one to really reinforce your message to listeners.

The best way to guarantee you have what it takes to give a dynamic speech? Practice. Do as many dry runs as needed to really nail down your delivery to resonate best with attendees.

 

Give Your Online Audience Bragging Rights

Everyone loves a chance to show off what they’ve learned. Keep this in mind during your online presentation. If you’re hosting a training session, tell your online audience that there will be a brief quiz at the event’s conclusion for them to earn professional development credits – it’s a guaranteed way to keep them engaged at all times.

The quiz approach can add value even if you’re not hosting a training event. Use end-of-sessions quizzes to encourage participants to earn points, achieve recognition or even receive discounts off of products to ensure they are encouraged to listen to your webinar.

 

Diversify Your Speakers

Know some industry thought leaders that also love to work a great webinar? Ask them to speak at yours. Creating a panel of presenters who all offer something just a little bit different than everyone else will immediately build buzz around your webinar.

Most importantly, when you do go live, changing hosts can keep the energy up in your virtual meeting room, encouraging everyone logged in to pay attention to the information being shared.

keep your online audience engaged with diverse webinar presenters

 

Test Your Audio

Audio is important during any type of gathering. However, sound quality may prove even more critical during an online session than a face-to-face meeting.

No one wants to hear the dreaded, “can you hear me now?” during a webinar.

If one segment of your attendees are struggling to hear what’s being said, you may find yourself spinning wheels trying to remedy the sound situation while simultaneously losing the interest of the attendees who actually can hear you.

Before you go live, optimize your audio input options based on the system you’re using as well as perform audio checks to ensure your online audience gets the royal sound system treatment.

 

Manage Your Time Wisely

Always consider your listeners’ busy schedules when developing your webinar presentation. No one wants to log into a conference only to feel like they’re being held hostage for the next several hours. Those who stay on at a webinar that is too long (and even those that disconnect before you end) will feel resentful and taken advantage of.

Prove that you value and respect their time by creating a conference that runs no longer than 60 minutes.

As a general rule of thumb, 45 minutes for speaking with 15 minutes at the end for questions should provide a manageable balance for participants to remain attentive throughout the webinar.

 

Set Aside a Specific Q&A Section

You should always allow for questions throughout the session to hold listeners’ attention. However, setting aside time near the end of the event for a final question and answer period can keep attendees listening for the whole webinar.

When sending out an agenda, be sure to list out the different Q&A segments you plan to host. This will help your online audience know that it’s worth staying until the very end to ask their questions. It will also let them know that they will be able to hear what others may inquire about after hearing your presentation in its entirety.

Worried no one will have anything to ask? Fret not; come prepared with some of your own relevant questions to build momentum. Chances are, the rest of your attendees will follow suit.

 

Save the Best for Last

Reward your attendees for tuning in throughout your entire presentation.

After setting aside time for a thorough question and answer segment, you may want to consider offering a giveaway of some sort.

Let participants know that at the end of the discussion, listeners will receive an added perk.  Examples include: free resources, promotional discounts or even access to exclusive products.

In short, never underestimate the power of the freebie to keep your online audience engaged throughout your entire webinar.

 

Conclusion

There are many ways to engage an online audience during your entire webinar. If you use the suggestions above, you’re guaranteed to host a successful online event from start to finish.

If you’re looking for powerful webinar software, BigMarker can help. Sign up for a 14-day free trial today. Or send us a message if you have a question.

 

The Keys To Preparing And Managing A Webinar Panel Discussion

A successful webinar seamlessly incorporates several audio and visual components for a collective final presentation that builds sustainable brand exposure, recognition, and loyalty. Slides, graphics, images, Q&A sessions and live webinar panel discussions are just some of the many segments you may find in an effective webinar.

Today, we’re focusing our attention on webinar panel discussions. Webinar panel discussions deliver extensive audience influence and session value, which makes them an incredibly valuable form of content. However, the thought of coordinating schedules and planning an outline for multiple presenters can even overwhelm seasoned webinar hosts.

Fortunately, we’ve got you covered. Continue reading for a compiled a list of easy-to-follow tips and tricks to help you plan and execute a successful webinar panel discussion.

Phase I: Plan For Success With a Webinar Panel Discussion Before the Event

 

Knowing a few tips on how to effectively implement a webinar panel discussion can streamline the process and ensure you don’t miss out on the advantages offered when using this webinar strategy. When planning your next webinar panel, keep these key suggestions in mind to optimize results, both for your audience as well as your speakers. Begin with pre-show pointers, such as:

 

Consider Audience First

Consider your webinar audience when hosting a webinar panel discussion
Give the audience what it wants!

The first step in planning a successful webinar panel discussion? Think about your audience.

Oftentimes, a session host may fill the time with personal contacts and affiliates who may not have anything relevant to offer to listeners. Consider the goal of your event (aka – the reason why people have signed up to begin with).

Knowing the purpose of your webinar panel will keep you focused on finding panelists who add to the core conversation, not detract due to their own personal agenda.

Some webinar hosts find that best way to focus on the audience is to ask for their input.

Having numerous panelists can mean running long on time, or missing critical topics altogether. Before your session, reach out to both potential and existing registrants to inquire about what they’d like to see and hear most when the tune in. Online surveys and emails can go a long way in letting listeners know that you value their time as well as their input.

 

Select The Right Speakers

Once you recognize what you’re hoping to achieve, it’s time to create your list of prospective webinar panel speakers. One of the biggest benefits to hosting a webinar panel is that you get to choose the best speakers for your cause.

Don’t settle for simply scrolling through options you already have a professional relationship with.

Dream big and be bold. If there are industry experts who you know can add value to your session, reach out and ask if they’d be willing to participate. Adding well-known names to your agenda increases registration numbers as well as actual attendance on game day.

Additionally, don’t go for a webinar panel of speakers who will all offer the same thing, or agree on everything. Diversify your discussion by including presenters with varying perspectives and opinions.

Convening a wide range of viewpoints can encourage active discussion and debate, both with each other as well as with members of your audience.

 

Get To Your Pre-Game Preppin’

Anyone who has ever hosted a webinar understands that strategic preparation plays a vital role in overall success.

This holds true when including a webinar panel discussion. As soon as you have your list of presenters, you will want to begin coordinating the schedule, pinpointing individual strengths, and itemizing key objectives.

Some relevant tips when you get to prepping include:

  • Know your time: Putting together an outline that sticks to the time allotted can prove challenging. Don’t wing everyone’s time slot. Put together a very specific outline of speaking order as well as amount of speaking time so nothing’s left to chance when you go live. Your audience will appreciate knowing that you are sensitive to their busy schedules and routines.

Pro tip: Tell your webinar panel speakers ahead of time that you’ll send them a conspicuous signal (such as a private chat message) a few minutes before their time is done to keep them on track.

  • Do your topic research: Just because you aren’t carrying the conversation, doesn’t mean you can’t contribute to it as needed. Prepare for the webinar panel by carefully researching the topics being covered throughout your webinar. Your insight or varying perspective can add a new layer of interest with your audience.
  • Prepare slides: Yes, you will want your speakers on camera when they are talking but you should also include some visual resources as well to strengthen the overall audience impression. Work with your individual presenters to determine if they will be providing visual materials and slides for their discussions. If so, you will want to have access to them before the function so you can include them in the master presentation. If they don’t provide slides, you will want to create at least one for them. A simple slide with their name and topics can add a visual component to their conversation to keep listeners engaged.
  • Create an agenda: Finally, once you’ve developed the speaking order and brushed up on the latest topic information, you will want to create an agenda to share with participants. Highlight at least 3-5 main points so they know what to expect when they tune in. Before your function, you will also want to provide a copy to speakers as well to manage their expectations.

 

Plan Your Opening

You may or may not be the main attraction at your webinar panel discussion; however, it’s still your webinar panel discussion. As the host, you will have certain responsibilities to your audience – effectively opening the session is one such obligation.

Once again, don’t wing it or you may risk losing them before you even get started. Plan ahead and get creative with your session opening.

Don’t simply reiterate the topic ideas; give a brief overview that details the value offered during the session as well as highlight any important instructions they will need as the event progresses. Your opening is also the time where you will emphasize when question and answer sessions will be held so you can manage expectations accordingly.

 

Practice

As the webinar panel host, you’ll want to practice as many event segments as possible to ensure a seamless experience.

While it may prove difficult to convene all your speakers for at least one dry run, it’s worth the effort. This is especially true if you will all be speaking from remote locations.

Even the most polished speaker may find himself struggling to effectively take over the conference from a technology perspective. A brief run through with your panelists can save invaluable time (and embarrassment) when you all go live.

 

Phase II: Plan For Success With A Webinar Panel Discussion During The Event

 

In addition to pre-webinar panel planning, you will also have to consider how to manage the actual event itself. Once again, a little advance preparation can yield impressive dividends. When you go live, remember:

You’re The Moderator

No matter how much planning you do, you will probably still have to moderate at various intervals throughout the session. Stay focused and facilitate as needed to sustain momentum and smooth out potential hiccups.

Most importantly, it’s your job to ensure all of your webinar panel speakers get their allotted time. You need to make sure they get the individual attention they all deserve. Stay on your toes to prevent more assertive webinar panel speakers from dominating the conversation.

 

Introduce Each Speaker

Speakers on your webinar panel should never have to introduce themselves. That’s your job.

Give a brief overview on each panelist that includes name, company, area of expertise and specific topics each person will address during his/her presentation. Not only will the introduction pique the interest of your audience, it will also help your speakers stay on track and get to their respective points quickly.

 

Allow For Q&A Sessions

use Q&A sessions during a webinar panel discussion

You should always include Q&A segments in your webinar to increase interaction with your participants.

Question and answer components can break up the monotony, captivate the crowd, and instantly boost energy levels (which, inevitably, do dip a bit as the conference goes on).

Don’t allow each panelist to answer every single question asked. Listening to the same answer again and again is a surefire way to lose participants. Instead, give 1 or 2 presenters the chance to respond. Then, get the conversation moving forward to the next inquiry.

 

Ask Your Own Questions

While you’ll want to encourage your listeners to ask questions during your webinar panel, you may want to consider having a few of your own inquiries on hand as well.

You can’t predict what will or won’t be ask once you go live. Having thought provoking questions for each of your speakers at the ready can keep the function progressing and offer an interesting viewpoint to your listeners.

 

Prevent The Dreaded Pitch

Some presenters simply won’t be able to resist the opportunity to pitch their personal interests and products.

It’s crucial to remember that everyone who registered for your event is expecting to focus on a specific topic. The last thing your audience wants to listen to is a sales pitch from every speaker on your panel. If your webinar begins to feel like a giant infomercial, you may suffer irreparable damage to your brand. (As well as lose participants at record speeds.)

Just before you go live, reiterate your expectations to each panelist. If you do sense the conversation sliding into the realm of unabashed advertisement, do your best to organically direct the discussion back to your original focus. Your audience will thank you.

 

Host Your Own Webinar Panel Discussion

At BigMarker we understand the importance of hosting engaging webinars. That’s why we offer modern webinar software with features specifically designed to build, measure, and increase attendee activity during your webinars. Start your 14 day free trial today to leverage our powerful webinar technology. Or send us a message if you’re interesting in learning more.

 

 

 

 

References

https://blog.clickmeeting.com/9-key-tips-for-an-effective-panel-discussion-in-your-webinar

http://www.eventbuilder.rocks/webinars-panel-discussions-10-ideas-make-look-like-rockstar/

Webinar Production Essentials: A Complete Technology & Equipment Checklist

Planning your next webinar? Perhaps it’s your first webinar? Regardless of what’s in your pipeline for webinar production, you’ll want to ensure you have the best technology and equipment at hand to be successful.

Many companies and organizations use webinars as a large part of their marketing strategy, which means a reliable in-house set-up is crucial for their webinar production value. If webinars are a big part of your marketing strategy, you’ll need your webinars to be as polished and professional as possible to maximize your marketing impact.

Webinars nowadays have a wide reach when it comes to marketing. Anyone can find an on-demand recorded webinar from your website, social shares, YouTube, emails, blog post; the list goes on! So, you never know who might see it, could be your next customer. Therefore, you should opt always to put your best foot forward when it comes to webinar production.

Read on for the ultimate essentials checklist for webinar production technology.

 

Essential Technology for Webinar Production

 Technology for Webinar Production

Webinar Software:

There are many options available for hosting your webinar. Each platform has a different set of features that in many cases, don’t overlap.

Determine your feature requirements of a webinar platform before researching and make sure to start a free trial as well. You want to determine if the experience on the host and end-users side matches the experience you wish to deliver for your webinar production.

 

Fast Internet Connection:

Streaming a live webinar takes up a lot of internet bandwidth. Ensure you have a fast internet connection or the ability to wire into your network. If you have low broadband speeds or if you’re still on dial-up service, you can count on having frequent delays and connection issues throughout the course of your live webinar.

As part of your webinar production set-up, make sure to test your speed. (We recommend this speed test.)

 

Marketing Automation Platform:

Your webinar platform likely comes with a tool that allows you to build a registration landing page. Your landing page gives your registrants the ability to fill out a form to register for the webinar so you can capture their information. If it doesn’t, you will need a separate solution or tool that allows you to build this registration landing page for each webinar.

Additionally, if your webinar platform does not give you the ability to send out email reminders or updates to webinar registrants, you will need to use a marketing automation platform to do this as well. Emails are a critical part of webinar production, especially when it comes to following up with webinar registrants. You don’t want to leave your audience hanging!

 

Audio Conferencing:

Most webinar platforms come with VoIP, or they will provide a conference line for attendees to dial into. However, not all webinar platforms allow dial-in. In case yours does not, or if the provided audio quality is poor, you might want to source your own audio option to combat against this issue.

 

PowerPoint:

More often than not, a webinar host will run through a PowerPoint presentation during their online event.

If you do not own Microsoft PowerPoint, now is the time to invest or seek an alternative solution like Keynote.  These tools allow you to put together the visual component of your webinar production. Doing so gives you the ability to brand the presentation to your company or share your “voice.”

For example, if your company tends to be quirky or funny, you can show that off in your slides. Some webinar platforms have the ability to upload PowerPoint files directly into the platform as well, which provides a cleaner view for participants.

Video Editing Tool:

Video is huge right now in the marketing space and is a great form of content to integrate into your webinar production.

Chances are you might have existing videos or training sessions recorded that you’d like to share during your webinar. If you plan to use video during your webinars, it’s always a good idea to do a little editing to make it work with all your other webinar content.

For example, if you only want to show 45 seconds of a 90-second video during the webinar, this is your opportunity to not waste any time and cut out the parts of the video you don’t wish to show.

Image Editing Tool:

Image editing tools, like Photoshop, are another worthwhile investment for your webinar production. This is especially true if you have someone on staff with graphic design experience.

You might use an image editing tool to help craft your PowerPoint slides so you can insert branded images. You could also use image editing software to edit a webinar speaker’s headshot and perhaps even use to assist with the creation of your registration page or email invites. Using a tool like this throughout the set-up process of each webinar will help your webinar production look polished and professional.

 

 

As for the equipment part of your webinar production package, this includes the physical equipment you should strongly consider having on-hand for an in-house studio to produce your webinars. Read on for the ultimate essentials checklist for equipment.

 

 

Equipment for Webinar Production

Equipment for Webinar Production

High-quality webcam:

Audiences like to see webinar speakers on webcam.

Seeing the presenter on camera helps attendees connect to the speaker and delivers a more in-person feel. You’ll want to source a high-quality webcam to give your webinar speaker the best chance at looking good.

You won’t want yourself or your co-hosts to look grainy on screen or even worse… your webcam might not work at all. Hopefully, your laptop has a quality webcam built-in, but if you’ve tested it and it isn’t up to par, look at buying webcams that plug in via USB to your laptop or computer.

 

Lighting:

If you’re on webcam, it’s ALL about the lighting. Without proper lighting equipment, your webinar speaker could be left looking washed out or completely overshadowed. Review this article for fun tips on using lighting to your advantage while on webcam!

Backdrop:

A backdrop is a staged background behind the webinar speaker. This is only required if you plan on using a webcam during the webinar.

Instead of having a messy desk or boring white wall behind you showing up in the video feed, you can purchase a backdrop set to control the entire camera view. During your webinar production you can customize your own backdrop to have the company logo or other landscape of your choosing. Having a backdrop is a cool touch to add to the experience of your webinar.

 

Microphone:

While your computer or laptop likely has an internal mic already built-in, we encourage investing in a standalone mic to achieve superior sound quality.

This could be a headset microphone or a mic that sits on your desk.

If you plan to be on webcam, we highlight suggest a discreet microphone, and only use a headset that is not very visible. Otherwise the webinar host might look more like a call operator and than the industry expert they are.

Laptop or computer:

It’s no secret that you’ll need a computer or laptop to host a webinar.

In many cases you’ll need multiple computers to facilitate your webinars. This is especially true if you plan to have multiple webinar hosts. However, it is not unheard of for some folks to only use a phone nowadays. It’s even rumored that Marketing Guru, Gary Vaynerchuk, only uses his smartphone and no longer has a laptop, for example.

Even though this one might seem like a no-brainer, it’s important to discuss all of the necessary equipment and technical requirements with everyone involved in your webinar production as far in advance as you can. This will ensure everyone is adequately prepared before you go live.

Also, if you’re on a laptop, make sure your charger is nearby. Webinars can quickly drain your battery. You don’t want to have that snafu – big ouch!

 

 

Webinar Production Budgeting

Now that we’ve run through the essentials checklist for the technology and equipment you should consider investing in as part of your webinar production, we want to discuss the dreaded topic of budget.

You likely already have a budget in mind for what you want to spend on webinar production, or what budget you are allowed to spend from your boss.

If you do have the budget to move forward with the highest quality technology and equipment then, by all means, please do this. You won’t regret it.

However, you can quickly drive up costs by going with the top of the line options for everything we listed above, which might not work for you. If you need to start small or bootstrap your way when it comes to webinar production, that is ok! We believe in your hustle.

If you don’t have the budget then you’ll need to pick and choose what technology and equipment to initially invest in. You will want to scope out all the essential items above, pick your ideal technology and equipment to purchase, then price it out and match against your budget.

While every item above is an essential for professional webinar production, if you’re bootstrapped on the budget, consider the below essentials first and foremost before purchasing anything else:

 

Top 4 Webinar Production Essentials:

  1. Webinar platform – this alone accounts for what will make or break your registrant’s webinar experience with you. Plus, you need a way to host a webinar! Select a webinar platform that fits within your budget, but will allow you to provide the best experience. From the registration process, to signing in, the live webinar and finally even leaving the webinar. This is not the item to skimp on.

 

  1. Fast Internet Connection – nowadays, most people have fast internet connection, or an option to directly wire into the network. If you don’t, this should be a top priority.

 

  1. Lighting – if you plan to be on webcam, lighting is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to make a good impression. Whether it’s a lamp from home or professional lighting. This is a must-have.

 

  1. PowerPoint – most webinars use a PowerPoint presentation throughout their webinar anyway. So, since you likely already have this software, check out our blog on perfecting the webinar PowerPoint design!

 

Get started!

As mentioned, you’ll need high quality webinar software to ensure your webinar production is a success from start to finish. Check out BigMarker today for a modern, feature-rich webinar experience that both you and your audience will love. Start your 14-day free trial now or send us a message to get in touch.

Are Your Webinars Successful? Tracking and Decoding Webinar Metrics

As you probably know, hosting a webinar can benefit your company in a number of ways. However, before you put time and money into these presentations, make sure you know about the following webinar metrics you can use to judge their effectiveness.

Investment ROI

Of all the webinar metrics we’re about to list, this should be one of the most familiar. No matter what kind of business you’re in, everyone knows what ROI (Return on Investment) is and why it’s important.

While ROI can apply to all kinds of investments, we’re putting it on our list of webinar metrics as a reminder because it can be fairly easy to overlook. Depending on your setup, webinars are usually cheap to host. This is especially true if you already own some or all of the required hardware.

Nonetheless, just like anything to do with your business, you need to track what you’re spending to see whether or not you’re making a good investment. Don’t just keep the receipts from the hardware you had to buy, either.

You may also have to account for things like:

  • Webinar software (the cost may be one-time; it may be monthly)
  • The opportunity cost of you taking time out of your day to host or the amount you’re paying an employee
  • Any platforms you used for landing pages, emails, etc.
  • Any ads you used to bring in traffic

There may be all kinds of other costs involved. These should all be tracked and you should also put a system in place to take into consideration any others you add in the future.

Then, you’ll want to compare the amount of money you’ve spent on your webinars up to this point on how many conversions you’re seeing that produce actual customers.

Length of the Webinar

We touched on this to some degree, but the second recommendation on our list of webinar metrics is to track how long your webinar actually goes on for.

The reason we mentioned above was in terms of real or opportunity cost: if you’re taking time out of your day, what’s the cost of that because you’re not doing something else? On the other hand, if you’re paying an employee, what’s the cost to have them host?

However, those aren’t the only reasons to pay attention to how long your webinars are going on for.

Like all webinar metrics, the length of your webinars may influence how effective they are at converting customers.

While it’ll probably never come down to a minute-by-minute analysis, you may learn that a full hour is preferable to just a half hour. As time goes on and you do enough webinars, you might find that, for some topics, your guests are willing to stick around longer than they are for others.

At first, just get a feel for what their general preference is, but look to segment that down at some point, too, for even better insights.

Drop-Off Points

No matter what you have in mind for your webinar in terms of the format, your goals for it, the information you’ll cover, how much you’re investing, etc. you need to make drop-off points one of the webinar metrics you pay attention to.

As the name suggests, this metric refers to when people drop off your webinar. It’s almost always going to happen and a lot of times, there’s little you can do about it.

Nevertheless, you want to keep the number as small as possible and looking back on drop-off points will help you do this.

For example, let’s say you found that people were leaving within the first 10 minutes while you were still doing your introduction and explaining the goal of your webinar. This would be hugely valuable information. Up until that moment, you may have thought your introduction was not just polished and engaging but helpful for the audience, as well.

Now, you would know otherwise and could make adjustments so more people stick around for the rest of the webinar.

Checking for drop-off points can help with everything from knowing which guests are good/bad to which topics your viewers like/hate to even the type of tone they prefer.

The Optimal Time to Host a Webinar

Depending on whom you speak to, the ideal time to put on a webinar is right around noon or sometime after five. Others will tell you that Saturday morning is usually the best.

It’s not that these people are lying. It’s that they most likely all have very different types of clientele.

If you’re hosting a webinar for freelancers, just about any time during the day probably works.

On the other hand, if you’re hoping for attendance from people who work traditional 9-to-5 jobs, you could host your sessions at noon and hope to catch them on their lunch breaks, or wait until after they get home.

The only way to know for sure is to use webinar metrics. Truth be told, you can also find out when your competitors put theirs on and assume they’ve already done their research, but looking into your webinar metrics is probably still best.

Use webinar metrics to schedule webinars

Attendee Feedback

Feedback is extremely important to the success of your webinar for a few reasons.

The obvious one is that all the webinar metrics in the world may not help you with certain points that could use improvement. Maybe you’d be better off explaining certain terms in more detail or ditching a certain segment people are just sitting through to get to the good stuff.

However, feedback is also an important form of engagement. Your webinar metrics may show you a large percentage of your audience stays from the beginning to the end of your presentation. Well, that’s great, right?

Maybe, but maybe people aren’t really paying attention. They might just have it on in the background while they pull up another window and do something else. Or, people might be listening but actually have no idea what you’re talking about.

None of these would bode well for reaching your webinar goals. By keeping track of the amount of feedback you get during and after a webinar (and getting a sense for what these responses are about), you’ll have a much easier time understanding if you’re connecting with your audience or not.

Note: you do, of course, actually have to prompt your audience for feedback and enable that option in your webinars. Otherwise, your webinar metrics may be reporting depressing results simply because your viewers don’t know they can interrupt you.

Polls and Surveys

webinar polls as a webinar metric

These webinar metrics are both versions of feedback, but they deserve their own space here because of the unique insights they can provide.

Recall that a few paragraphs back we mentioned that you’d want to get a sense for what kind of responses you were receiving from your audience.

This can be kind of tough, though. One really nice problem to have would simply be that so many people are attending your webinars that you can’t possibly make a fair assessment of their responses.

Fortunately, surveys and polls not only solve this problem but are two very effective webinar metrics for other reasons, too.

You can use polls and surveys during your webinar to quickly get answers from your audience in a way that will be easy to quickly understand.

Of course, you can also use them afterward to solicit critiques from your viewers.

The great thing about organizing information this way is how easy it then is to view it all from a macro-level. If you keep the same or similar questions going forward, it will be that much easier to compare responses.

Devices Used to Watch Your Webinar

This might seem like a minor piece of data hardly worth the use of webinar metrics, but there’s a lot you could do with this information.

The most obvious is that if you know your audience tends to use smartphones to watch your webinars, you’re going to need larger graphics so they can see them on their smaller screens. In fact, that insight would be worth knowing even if just 10% of your audience preferred smartphones. You don’t want to lose 10% of the audience you worked so hard to bring in, do you?

Conversion Rate

Arguably, one of the most important webinar metrics you need to concern yourself with is conversion rate.

There are three different versions. The first we already talked about at the beginning: it’s knowing how many people attend and then convert into customers.

Aside from knowing the ROI, though, you also want to get a feel for what percentage of the total attendees are converting. Even if your ROI is huge because of low overhead, that doesn’t mean your conversion rate is necessarily where you want it to be.

The second type of conversion rate you want to use webinar metrics to monitor is the number of people who actually attend your webinar after registering for it.

Depending on the industry you work in, that number could easily be as low as 20% and yet would still be considered really good for that field.

You’ll need to figure this out for yourself and then track your ability to lock in people who RSVP.

Of course, the conversion rate of people who come to your site and then go on to sign up for your webinar may be of particular interest, as well. This is the beginning of your marketing funnel, so if it’s not serving its purpose, the rest of your efforts are also going to come up short.

Again, don’t confuse these webinar metrics with ROI. The latter has to do with dollars and cents. These are all about ratios: how many of the whole were you able to get to take a desired action?

Brand Awareness

This is a pretty tough metric to monitor no matter what kind of tools you’re using to increase your company’s brand awareness.

Perhaps the most popular way for many businesses is to watch their social media profiles and look for significant increases following webinars. You’d have to know what a normal increase looks like, but, otherwise, gathering these webinar metrics from across your social media sites could prove very helpful.

The other way you can measure brand awareness is by tracking mentions of your company. You can set up Google Alerts for this or use software specific to social media sites. After all, some people may mention you or your webinar without actually speaking directly to your account.

Again, it can be tough to quantify these incidents in terms of brand awareness. People could be talking about your organization for any number of reasons.

Still, if you’re using webinars to increase your company’s mindshare and build its brand, it’s worth digging into these metrics.

Return Attendees

Earlier, we mentioned conversions and the importance of making sure people are RSVPing and then actually showing up.

Our last example on our list of webinar metrics you should be using has to do with retention. Make sure you’re not just looking at raw numbers when it comes to people showing up to your webinars. You also want to see how many are returning. Not only will that kind of retention cost you less, but those people are probably more likely to become customers, something that may be a major goal of your webinar.

The above information should have made it clear that webinar metrics are vital to your success using this medium, but also that you’re not lacking for options. Someday, you may come up with your own metric unique to the type of industry you’re in or customer you’re after, but for now, the above list should more than suffice.

That being said, if you have any questions about webinar metrics or hosting successful webinars, feel free to get in touch.  Also, if you need a powerful webinar platform to handle your webinar metrics and other webinar hosting endeavors, BigMarker fits the bill. Start your 14-day free trial today!

 

 

 

Sources:

https://www.slideshare.net/WebinarReady/6-key-metrics-that-impact-webinar-peformance62413

http://blog.workcast.com/5-metrics-for-measuring-webinar-success

https://venturebeat.com/2015/09/23/10-key-metrics-to-turn-your-webinars-into-a-super-lead-gen-tool/

https://www.brighttalk.com/webcast/1166/52367/6-key-metrics-that-impact-webinar-performance-before-during-and-after

What’s in a Webinar Title?

A lot goes into hosting a successful webinar. While there are a number of important elements to cover before, during, and after your webinars to ensure success, it’s critical to start with a winning webinar title.

Below, we’re going to cover what you need to know in order to come up with an attractive, high-converting webinar title.

 

Think About Your Audience Before Choosing a Webinar Title

Think About Your People and Webinar Audience Before Choosing a Webinar Title

This might seem like pretty obvious advice. Of course, you want to think about who might be attending your webinar before you come up with its title. That’s why this tip comes first on our list of webinar title advice.

However, let’s dig a bit deeper.

When you understand your market and what they’re looking for, you’ll have more freedom to make the most out of the advice below.

One thing to think about is tone. It has become very popular for people to give the titles of their webinars, blog posts, and other forms of marketing some kind of humorous or witty bend.

This can definitely increase your clicks, but before you do something like this, consider if the tone would be appropriate.

If your webinar is on something like estate planning, dealing with depression, or any other subject that might carry a somber feel, it probably isn’t a good idea to try to inject humor. People might not think you’re taking the topic very seriously or they may simply wonder if you are truly a professional.

Finally, take a look at what your competitors are doing. There’s no shame in trying to improve on what’s clearly working for them.

 

Turn Your Webinar Title into a Provocative Question

No matter what kind of marketing material you’re trying to come up with a title for, asking a question is almost always a sure bet.

For one thing, a question demands an answer. Therefore, by making your webinar title a question, you’re setting yourself up for instant engagement. This doesn’t guarantee someone will sign up, but it ensures that most people will take an extra second because of your title.

For best results, make the question a provocative one.

“How would you like to increase your sales?” is definitely a question that will probably gain decent engagement.

However, a far better one would be, “Would you like to improve your profits by 200%?”

See how that gets the mind going? A provocative question must be specific in order to get the desired reaction.

 

Use a Powerful Verb in Your Webinar Title

Use a Powerful Verb in Your Webinar Title

Rephrasing the above provocative webinar title into a statement would be to say, “Start making 200% more today!”

Obviously, it’s still provocative. It also carries a certain amount of power with it. The title doesn’t just hold a promise. It’s literally telling you to begin doing something.

However, an even more powerful verb would go a long way toward boosting your webinar signups.

“Accelerate your profits by 200%!”

“Boost profits by 200%!”

“Generate 200% more with your business!”

These stronger, more powerful verbs all help get the blood pumping a bit more. This is what you want. Before someone decides to invest time and perhaps even money into your webinar, you’d better get them excited.

Use verbs in your webinar title that will spike their emotions and have them full of anticipation so they can’t wait to get started.

 

Turn Your Webinar Title into a Listicle

If you know anything about writing blogs, you know that “listicles” (list-based forms of content) make for fantastic content. Aside from the fact that they are inherently better for organizing information, the titles tend to outperform others in terms of gaining clicks.

You can leverage the same power by coming up with a webinar title that begins with a number.

Of course, you only want to do this if your webinar will actually follow the same format. However, if you haven’t picked said format yet, it might be worth reorganizing things a bit so your listicle title becomes an accurate choice.

Combine this titling tip with the others from this piece and you will come up with a real powerhouse for your webinar.

 

Don’t Forget to Use Keywords in Your Webinar Title

Use keywords in your webinar title

While we’re not going to take the time to explain the intricacies of SEO (Search Engine Optimization), the following should suffice for a definition: SEO entails a number of different methods that help your site earn traffic by getting better ranks with search engines, especially Google.

Keywords play a big role in SEO. They’re the words or phrases people type into a search engine when they’re looking for something.

For example, if you were car shopping in Miami, you might type, “car dealerships in Miami.”

If you run a car dealership in Miami, that phrase is definitely a keyword you would want Google to associate with your site, so you’d stand a better chance of ending up high on the first page of the search results for it.

Again, we’re not going to get into all the details here, but having a keyword in the title of your content is always helpful. It tells Google that this keyword clearly plays a big role in the content you’ve posted.

Therefore, when you’re trying to come up with a webinar title, consider what your audience might search for to find it. This goes back to understanding your audience.

For best results, use SEO software for this or hire an expert to help you come up with a title based on available keywords you stand a good chance of ranking well for.

 

Make the Outcome Clear in Your Webinar Title

Above, when we were coming up with webinar title ideas about a program that would help viewers boost their profits, we did more than just make it into a question or use powerful verbs.

Those titles would also work because they imply or make an explicit promise to potential viewers.

This is always a good idea. It tells your would-be audience exactly why they should tune in.

Remember: people are busier than ever before. Therefore, even if you’re not charging for your webinar, you still need to convince them that it’s worth setting time aside in their days to tune in.

If you make the title of your webinar something like “The Acme. Co. Webinar”, you’re leaving too much to the imagination. What’s it about? What’s it going to cover? What do I get out of it?

You don’t want to hope that people will simply answer these questions themselves and give you the benefit of the doubt.

Something like “The Acme. Co. Profitability Webinar” is still too vague, though. Sure, people now know you’re probably going to talk about profitability, but that could still cover a wide range of topics.

Going back to what we talked about earlier, it’s also not very provocative or exciting.

You’d do much better with, “Drive Sales Up 200% in 10 Days.”

Now people know exactly what you’re promising. They still need to tune in for the details, of course, but they’ll be far more likely to do so because you’ve made a clear promise: If people join your webinar, they are going to make 200% more sales by the time 10 days go by.

If you want to double-check how well you’re doing with this strategy, try writing one out and asking somebody who knows nothing about your webinar what they think you’re going to deliver. The closer they get to the exact answer, the better you’ve done.

 

Are You Giving The People What They Want?

One last note regarding the outcome you promise in your webinar title: it better be one people would actually want.

This is similar to our recommendation about being provocative, except we’re not referencing style here. We’re talking about the actual substance of your webinar. While that topic is a subject for another blog post, the point is that if it doesn’t sound compelling in a title, it’s not worth going through with the webinar.

If you can’t completely overhaul the topic you’re covering in your webinar, at least do your best to repackage the subject so people can’t wait to reach the goal you’re promising.

 

Can You Make Your Webinar Title Timely?

Sometimes, this simply won’t be possible, so don’t try to force this tactic where it clearly won’t work.

That being said, timely titles almost always do better than those that seem like they could’ve been used at any time.

This is true for a couple of reasons worth exploring.

The first is simply that they do better with keyword research, which we already touched on. If someone looks up a certain recent event and you used it in your webinar title, you now have the chance to win over a new viewer you may have otherwise missed.

The second advantage is that a timely title often seems as though it’s a short-term offer, as fleeting as the event it references.

Even if this isn’t actually the case – perhaps you plan to leave the webinar up indefinitely – it still encourages people to take action when they think they could miss out if they don’t click now.

Again, don’t be sloppy with this method. When it isn’t an option, there’s no point in shoehorning it in.

Furthermore, you don’t want to attract people who would never be interested in the actual subject matter you’re covering.

For example, if you were to use a recent celebrity’s dramatic weight loss in order to pitch a webinar about self-management, goal-attainment, or a nutrition plan that the celebrity didn’t actually use, you might get people to sign up, but they’ll quickly lose interest.

 

Keep Your Webinar Title Nice and Short

Don’t get carried away with your webinar title to the point that people have to spend a good amount of time simply to read the entire thing.

A good webinar title length is between 50 and 70 characters.

While you certainly want to be descriptive, the problem is that most people associate long titles with boredom, which is definitely not how you want them to think about your webinar.

Furthermore, shorter titles are better for search engines and most social media platforms because they won’t be cut off due to length.

Again, descriptive titles are best. You want your potential viewers to understand what they can expect from your presentation. Ideally, they should be excited about this promise, too.

However, once you have an idea for your title, try to pare it down to make it as short as possible without losing its punch.

 

Will Your Brand Name Help Your Webinar Title?

If you have a notable brand, it’s not a bad idea to include it in your title.

People are busier than ever before. A link to your webinar on a social media page or some other site besides your own could be easily overlooked.

However, if your webinar title references the name of your company, you’ll probably have a much easier time getting the attention of your targeted audience.

 

Consider Using A/B Testing to Evaluate Your Webinar Title

A/B Test Webinar Titles

If the above seems a bit overwhelming, rest assured that picking a good title gets easier with practice.

At the same time, one really easy way to “hack” the process is by using A/B testing. While there are a number of platforms you can use to do this, the idea is simple: you test two different titles and see which one gets the most clicks.

For example, you can launch a Facebook ad that uses two or more titles and then see how many of your targeted customers click on them.

It will quickly become obvious which title is the best to use.

Nonetheless, we still recommend using the above advice and practicing your title-writing as much as possible. A/B testing will only be as productive as the quality of your titles.

 

If you’d like help crafting your webinar title, BigMarker is here to help. Contact us today to chat with a webinar expert.

 

 

 

 

Sources:

https://virtualvenues.com/are-your-webinar-titles-falling-flat-create-webinar-titles-that-sing

https://business.brighttalk.com/blog/webinar-titles-neednt-be-boring/

http://wsuccess.typepad.com/webinarblog/2010/07/does-your-webinar-title-work.html

http://info.infiniteconferencing.com/bid/91535/How-to-Attract-Attention-to-Your-Webinar-with-a-Catchy-Title

https://blog.webinara.com/creating-a-webinar-title-5a5722828b42

http://likesup.com/7-ways-to-create-a-seductive-webinar-title/

https://www.koozai.com/blog/content-marketing-seo/10-tips-for-creating-catchy-headlines/

How to Effectively Drive Webinar Registrations and Conversions

If you’re planning to host webinars in the near future, you’re probably pretty excited about their potential. Companies from all over the world and in countless industries have used webinars to increase their reach, build their authority, and, of course, turn viewers into customers.

However, that doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed the result you want. While there are plenty of important parts to virtual presentations, if you don’t know how to drive webinar registrations and conversions, the actual session you host won’t do a whole lot.

A brief primer on webinar registrations

Before we go jumping into the nuts and bolts of driving webinar registrations and conversions, let’s make sure everyone is on the same page about this topic.

After all, if you’re new to webinars and/or marketing, you may not understand why having people register for your webinar is so important. Some have even worried that putting a step like this between viewers and webinars may actually be counterproductive.

Webinar registrations are important because they help you build a target market. Registration data teaches you about the people signing up for your webinar, including how they heard about it.

That’s not all. Webinar registrations provide email addresses, allowing you to contact the audience about new programs and opportunities.

All things considered, you ultimately want to drive conversions. Webinars are great for countless reasons, but if they don’t lead to revenue, what’s the point?

Conversions are ratios of how many webinar attendees become customers. It may not happen immediately and it may take you several programs, but it’s still important to drive this number.

Now that we’ve covered webinar registrations and conversions, let’s move on to talking about how you can increase both.

Understanding the relationship between webinar registrations and conversions

Understanding the relationship between webinar registrations and conversions
On the left we have registrations and on the right we have conversions…but how are they related?

The first thing you need to understand about webinar registrations and conversions is how the two are related.

You might think this is obvious: Without registrations, there cannot be conversions.

That’s true, but it doesn’t tell the whole story. If you only get that far in your understanding of how the two are connected, you’re going to be very disappointed by your webinar’s results.

The people registering for your webinar will have a direct effect on your conversion rate because of the types of people who are registering.

Take this example…

Let’s say you’re a fitness coach and you specialize in coaching men older than 40 in weight loss. In an effort to sell books, courses, and more to clients, you decide to use a webinar where you cover basic topics, answer questions, and engage your audience.

After your webinar, you see that you hardly converted anyone. With a bit more digging, you learn that the vast majority of people actually dropped off early on into the webinar.

What went wrong?

It turns out your registration process set you up to fail. It didn’t mention that you were only focusing on men 40 and older. All you talked about was weight loss, six-pack abs, and easy diet plans. By trying to market to everyone, you ended up converting no one.

That’s an extreme example, but it illustrates how webinar registrations and conversions are related.

With that established, let’s dive into how to drive conversions.

Know your audience and how to target them

know and understand your webinar audience to drive webinar registrations
Different people – different goals and motivations!

Never assume you know everything about your market and your customers. It’s easier than ever before to learn more about them, so it’s worth researching which sites they visit, who they follow on social media, what their goals are, and more.

Truly understanding your audience helps you craft a message that resonates with readers and drives registrations.

At some point, you’ll have a large email list you can use for this heavy lifting, but right now, you may have to rely on ads or social media to promote your webinar.

Use ads to drive webinar registrations

It’s important to know where your audience will be and to craft an ad that will resonate. The more time you spend researching and testing this, the more effective your ads will be.

Video ads are one of the best ways to advertise a webinar and build interest. They give viewers a great idea of what to expect when they join your webinar.

So what kind of first impression should you make?

First, the audio and video must be perfect. This communicates to registrants that they will be able to see and hear the webinar.

Second, presentations must be polished. They don’t need to have expensive graphics and features, but they need to be delivered smoothly, succinctly, and confidently. This conveys that you are a trustworthy expert, and attendees will be more likely to register for future webinars.

Third, your audience should receive compelling information. Ideally, this is actionable advice that they can use right away. If you’re able to give them concrete help in an ad – even if it seems small – they’ll be incentivized to attend your webinar for more information.

Video ads are easy to run on YouTube, but what if your audience prefers Facebook or LinkedIn?

On sites that use static ads, you can redirect your audience to a shorter, teaser ad video on a landing page.

Earn webinar registrations through email

Over time, you’ll grow a reliable email list to attract registrants every time you host a webinar. If your content is always amazing, one email should be enough, right?

Unfortunately, that’s not usually how it works. Webinar experts with great content still struggle to keep attendance high.

To avoid this problem, first and foremost give prospects plenty of time. Instead of emailing them for the first time a few days before the webinar, help them plan for it by announcing it ahead of time.

For best results, use a three-week period when following up with prospects. You can always make it longer, but on average, 91% of registrations happen three weeks before the webinar.

Now, what kind of email are you going to send?

To drive webinar registrations, you will want to mix it up. For example, if you were to send three invitations, you might start with an HTML email, then a plain text email, then an HTML email again.

You should also vary the promotional message you use. It’s important to understand your audience, but in this case, we’re referring to the tone and verbiage. In one message, you might be formal. In another, you might be more personable.

When you create variety in your emails, your recipients can’t predict what you’ll send next. This piques their interest and makes them more likely to register.

Before we move on to conversions, we’ll leave you with one piece of advice about the copy you use to drive webinar registrations: Promise something big.

People take the time to attend webinars because they are looking for something impactful and they believe they will gain something valuable. It is important to give them a sense of certainty that the webinar will change their lives or businesses in an important way.

The art of turning webinar registrations into conversions

improve webinar registrations and conversions
Ramp up your ratios!

As discussed earlier, if you have a strong foundation of webinar registrations, it should be manageable to convert quite a few. This will be especially true if you follow our advice from the previous section and excite people about what you have to offer. They will show up ready to convert before the webinar even begins.

You might be wondering, “What is a good conversion rate?” The truth is that there’s no way of generalizing this number across industries and product lines. All you can do is look at the ratio between registrations and conversions and continuously improve it.

Give an exclusive offer

One way to increase conversions is with an exciting and unexpected offer during your webinar. Even if your goal is to sell at the end of the webinar, it is key to provide exclusive, obligation-free offers. This will excite them and they will want to reciprocate.

It’s important to hype this exclusive freebie. Instead of simply stating the offer, build up to it for a natural yet attention-grabbing moment.

Save the sales pitch for later

Keep the product or service out of the spotlight until the very end. Again, your webinar needs to add value, even if attendees do not convert. Webinar registrations improve when you not only promise value, but you deliver. Failing to deliver, or only delivering after you sell, can negatively impact conversions.

If you jump right into a sales pitch, it’s almost guaranteed that you will sell absolutely nothing. Avoid the sales pitch, and conversions will likely improve.

Use scarcity

Finally, you can use scarcity to your advantage. This is a powerful sales technique, and a webinar is a great time to leverage it.

Scarcity works one of two ways:

  • You can tell your audience that you have a limited quantity, or that you can only accommodate a certain number of people
  • You can make a limited time offer (e.g. After the webinar ends, they have until midnight to convert)

Of course, in order for your webinar marketing to be effective, your audience ultimately needs to be exicted about what you are offering.

Final thoughts

More than anything, each webinar you host is a learning experience. If you knock it out of the park on your first try, that’s amazing! However, don’t be discouraged if that’s not the case. The more you host, the more you learn, and your results are bound to improve.

Even when you see positive registrations and conversions, keep improving. These two components make all the difference, so the better they are, the better your overall results.

Start hosting!

To drive webinar registrations, you’ll first need a webinar software that allows you to design an amazing landing page. BigMarker is a modern webinar platform, offering a full stack of marketing tools that help you capture leads and maximize the impact of your webinars.

Start your 14-day free trial of BigMarker today, or send us a message to get in touch.

 

 

Sources:

https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/how-to-increase-webinar-registration#sm.000011dwb1h6t8epau77f3bhms60v

https://www.thebalance.com/increase-webinar-registrations-with-landing-pages-2531490

7 Ways to Improve Your Webinars (and Conversion Rate)

Hacks for Crafting a Killer Webinar Presentation – Part 2: Webinar PowerPoint Design

This blog is “part two” of a two-part series that details steps to take to develop a killer webinar presentation. Part one covered best practices for developing the content for your presentation, and this blog will include hacks for designing the webinar PowerPoint presentation, best practices for placing your content on slides and then tips for adding images.

If you haven’t read part one yet, check it out here. I will be referring to it often.

 

Designing your webinar PowerPoint Presentation

PowerPoint is a powerful tool and has more features that you probably ever considered.

You don’t need to be a designer to build a professional, sleek webinar PowerPoint presentation. You just need to have a little bit of creativity and patience. If your company doesn’t have a corporate PowerPoint template that you must use for your webinars, you are lucky enough to have the chance to develop a presentation that mirrors the tone of your webinar.

Before you start designing your webinar PowerPoint, decide what that tone is. Is this a serious webinar? Or maybe it can be a little playful, or have a modern take to it. Think of who your ideal audience is that you will try and get to register, that will be your first clue for selecting the design of the webinar PowerPoint.

 

Steps for Designing a Webinar PowerPoint

  1. Open your PowerPoint program; you should see a list of ready-made templates you can use. Such as below. Select the template that best fits the look you are going for. Note – we will review below how to change the colors of the template, only pick a template based on the design for this step.
webinar-presentation-1
Pick a webinar PowerPoint template
  1. Once you select your template, you can choose your colors. There are a few options to do this:
  • Under the Design tab, you can immediately choose different colors for your template, like the blue, brown or green. Look at the screenshot below for example.
webinar-presentation-2
Choose your color palate

 

  • OR if you have corporate brand standards, you can customize the background color and font size to your company’s colors. To customize the background, in the Design tab you will select the ‘Format Background’ button, make sure ‘Solid Fill’ is selected, click the color bucket to the right of ‘Color.’ A pop-up will open, and you can then input your corporate colors using the RGB sliders or Hex#. Notice the screenshot below. The slide is now gray!

 

webinar-presentation-3

 

  1. The next step is updating your font colors. You can, of course, select from any of the available colors, but if you’d like to use corporate colors or custom colors, go back to the Home Tab, select some text on a slide and then select the Font Color button – click on ‘More colors.’ Again, a pop-up will open, and you can use the RGB sliders or Hex# to find your colors. These colors will be saved in PowerPoint in the colors section under ‘Recent colors’ to select from again as you build your webinar PowerPoint.

webinar-presentation 4

  1. Logo – if you want to promote your company via your webinar PowerPoint, there are two easy hacks to get your logo on each slide.
    1. Add the Logo on the Slide Master – detailed instructions here.
    2. Or you can add your logo on the first slide of your webinar PowerPoint, typically your Title Slide. Once you place the logo in the spot you prefer, right-click on the logo and select copy. Go to each of your slides in your deck and press Paste. This will place the logo in the same spot for each of your slides.

That’s it! Now you have your PowerPoint design and colors set.

 

Placing Content in the Webinar PowerPoint

Some may not realize this, but you can find multiple slide layouts for PowerPoint templates. You can find these by being in the Home tab – click on the ‘layout’ button. As you can see in the below screenshot, there are a variety of designs to choose from to get your message across. Whether it’s a section slide, a two image slide design, captions, or even a vertical layout.

webinar-presentation-5
Pick your slide layout

In the part one blog, I had you highlight the most important elements of your webinar script. This highlighted content is to be the foundation of the content you place in your webinar PowerPoint slides.

Please do not copy and paste your script content directly onto your PowerPoint slides. There will be too much text, and then what is the point in you even talking if they can just read your entire presentation on your webinar PowerPoint?

You will want to break-up the content from your webinar script in short, digestible bites – this will allow your webinar attendees to listen to what you are saying rather than reading a story from your PowerPoint slides. Let’s break up the parts of a webinar PowerPoint piece by piece.

 

What content to place on the first 4 slides:

Title Slide: Put the title of the webinar, speaker(s) name, date, company logo.

Bio Slide: Picture of webinar speaker(s) and short bullets on who they are.

Agenda Slide: A Short-bulleted list of what will be discussed. (I used the agenda example from part-one of the blog series!)

Objectives Slide: Another short-bulleted list of what webinar attendees will take away from attending this webinar (example: 5 Hacks for Crafting a Killer Webinar Presentation)

 

These first 4 slides are the easiest to build, and should be the shortest. Don’t overthink these slides. They should be simple to follow and let your attendees know their purpose for being there the next 45 minutes to an hour. Check out the below 4 screenshots for examples of these slides.

 

Sample Intro Slides 

webinar-presentation-6

webinar-presentation-8

webinar-presentation-9

Typically, each webinar has a few main points to make or a couple of different sections. Please refer to the part-one blog for more information on writing these different sections. For this blog, I am going to again assume you have 4 sections of content called the what, why, how, and when.  We will call this part of the webinar PowerPoint the “body” – think of when you were school and the elements of an essay, this is the meat of your webinar, and you’ll have most of your slides in these sections.

For each of your 4 sections, you should have already highlighted the most important parts. You likely highlighted whole sentences. You will want to turn those sentences into short, digestible, easy to read bullets to illustrate your point or argument.

Once you have gathered the summarized text for each of your sections, I recommend you write a very short intro for each of your sections, and then 3-5 highlight bullets for what will be covered in this section. Almost like your agenda. You don’t need only to list what will be covered. You could instead name 3 important stats, a quote from an expert, or list of qualifications.

For each of your bullets, you can create a separate slide for each that dives deeper into the content. The below (some are silly!) screenshots will make this clearer. Start each section with its own sub-title slide to introduce each section. This will help let your attendees know that a new section of the webinar PowerPoint is starting as well.

webinar-presentation-10

webinar-presentation-11

webinar-presentation-12

 

The last slide (above) is a great example of a time to put in either a relevant image, call-out a quick stat, quote or comment. You could still list few short bullets on this slide to further illustrate your point too. The goal is not to overwhelm any of your slides, but to break up the content from your script. In these slides, you can also highlight a short snippet of the stories or examples you share from your webinar script.

Each slide should only be filled with 30-50% of text. If you’re covering a complex topic, think of a way to break it down without having to type it all out. A webinar PowerPoint should be a reference tool, not a script or a book. That is where your webinar script comes in handy, you’ll have all the points handy that you want to make, without having to remember it by just looking at a slide.

Now that the “meatiest” part of the webinar PowerPoint content is complete, you will create a ReCap or Takeaway slide. On this slide, you will pull out a few main bullets that you’ll want your webinar attendees to remember if nothing else. After this, you should proceed to your Q&A session (if this is part of your agenda).

Never leave your webinar attendees hanging, provide them information on a slide with the next steps you detailed in your webinar script. By sharing the information, it will give them time to screenshot the slide or write it down.

Finally, place your contact information on the last slide so that your webinar attendees can reach you, and you’re done with the content piece.

webinar-presentation-13

webinar-presentation-14

webinar-presentation-15

webinar-presentation-16

 

Using Images on your PowerPoint Slides

Slides looking a little bare? Jazz them up a bit with some images! Use images to illustrate each of your sections for your webinar PowerPoint. Ensure that your chosen images are relevant and drive home the point you are trying to make. Or add a little humor, it will keep everyone awake during the presentation.

There are a couple of free image websites I love to use. Check out the full list here. I recommend starting here to find images to ensure you are not infringing on any copyrights. Check out this blog for more information on copyright infringement.

My last tip for images is to use the ‘Design Ideas’ function in PowerPoint. It will offer a variety of ways to design your slide based on the image you drop in the webinar PowerPoint slide.  Check out the below screenshot for examples. It’s a quick, sure way to make your webinar PowerPoint look better in no time. You can find the ‘Design Ideas’ by selecting the Design tab at the top and then click on the ‘Design Ideas’ button. Note, this feature will usually only work if you have an image already on the slide. Or this feature will sometimes automatically pop-up when you drag an image to a slide from your desktop.

 

webinar-presentation-16

 

 

With this blog series, you have a variety of tips and tricks at your fingertips to develop a professional, branded and fun webinar PowerPoint. Give these tips a go, and have fun. Use this template as your foundation to begin building your own webinar PowerPoint presentation.

 

Get started!

To host amazing webinar PowerPoint presentations, you’ll need premium webinar software.

Start your free trial of BigMarker today or send us a message to get in touch!

 

Hacks for Crafting a Killer Webinar Presentation – Part 1: The Webinar Content

Crafting a killer webinar presentation is not simple, but with this two-part blog series, you will have the perfect tutorial at your fingertips to learn how to craft your very own killer webinar presentation that delivers results.

This blog series is ideal for those who want to host webinars, but don’t have the budget for an in-house content writer or graphic designer to help pull together killer webinar presentations. The good news is, you don’t need that in-house expertise! As long as you or someone internally is an expert on the content topic you wish to speak about, you can still pull off a professional webinar presentation that will be sure to impress.

A webinar presentation utilizes a PowerPoint 99.9% of the time unless you are hosting a webinar demo of a software platform. This PowerPoint presentation is the focus of the webinar and what your webinar attendees will be looking at throughout the length of the entire presentation. Since it is the star, it is important to build your webinar presentation with a solid foundation. That solid foundation is your content. The content is your webinar script.

It is not ideal to start building your webinar presentation before your script. I’ve met way too many webinar speakers that prefer to just “wing it” when it comes to what they will be saying during the live webinar. If you’re a charismatic speaker and know your content inside and out, the webinar might still go well, but you will be doing your webinar audience a disservice.

 

Here is why winging it is never a good idea:

  1. You’re able to easily get off track as you didn’t properly plan on how to deliver the content
  2. You might share information that confuses attendees or not share enough information
  3. If you’re stressed out before the webinar, sick, or having a bad day – you might lose focus and forget key points or stories that would enhance the content of webinar
  4. You’re more likely to be nervous, as each slide you look at you will have to think of what to say, vs. already knowing what to say

 

These are just a few reasons, but there are so many more! A webinar presentation script is your life boat. It helps you to be confident in what you’re saying and knowing you are delivering the very best content to your audience, at the right time in the live webinar presentation.

Considering the webinar script is the foundation of your webinar presentation we are going to review in-depth how to prepare your script and then how to use that script to select the content for your webinar presentation.

First start you will start with a Word document to note all your ideas, points you want to make and the flow of the webinar presentation you are aiming for. It is much easier to start from one continuous document, than going directly to PowerPoint and figuring it out from there.

Once you have down the direction you want, it’s time to start building your script on that same Word document, from start to finish.

When I say script, I mean you really want to write down each word you plan on speaking during the live webinar. Of course, you can’t script the Q&A section, or what you might say based on your audience’s poll answers or chat comments (and you most definitely need to comment or relate to those answers!), but that will be the only time you need to think of what to say – the rest of your webinar presentation track will be a well-oiled machine. That way if a webinar attendee asks a question that you know you will be covering later in the webinar, you can tell them to stay tuned, vs. side-tracking the whole webinar  presentation to answer that question and potentially confuse other attendees who don’t understand the concept yet.

As you build your script, include the following 9 parts. Through writing down content for all 9 parts, you will then have your entire talk track ready for the day of the webinar and ensure it aligns with your webinar presentation PowerPoint content and what main points you want your webinar attendees to takeaway.

Additionally, during your dry-runs, as you read out loud your webinar presentation script to your team, as a group you can collaborate on gaps in content or chunky transitions. With this feedback, you can quickly update your script so that the live webinar is seamless and you can ensure you are hitting on all the reasons your webinar attendees signed up to attend in the first place.

 

The 9 Parts of a Webinar Presentation Script

 

  1. Greeting

During this greeting portion, you will welcome your webinar attendees, thank them for joining, perhaps note a few housekeeping items. You will then introduce yourself and your company, what you do and why you are relevant to speak on this topic. If you have co-webinar speakers, have them introduce themselves as well.

It would be a good idea to run through a very quick tutorial for using the webinar platform from an attendee perspective if you plan to have participants interact with the webinar platform to chat or fill out a poll, for example. Basically, whatever information that is important for you to share to ensure a successful webinar should be stated here before getting started.

Tip: If you do plan on interacting with your webinar attendees through poll, chat or other webinar engagement features like social sharing or white-boarding, you should decide at what times you would like this interaction to happen and place it in your script accordingly so that you do not forget to invite them to write an answer in the chat or fill out the poll at the times it makes sense during the content delivery.

 

Beginning your webinar presentation

 

  1. Agenda

Run through the agenda of the webinar presentation. Your agenda should have 3-5 bullets on what you plan on covering, each bullet should be for a different section of the webinar, and you’ll want to say how long each section should take to review and how long you intend for Q&A at the end of the webinar to answer questions.

To create a “section” you will want to break up the content you intend for them to learn in different chunks as to create the different elements of the webinar. Through doing this, it will make the delivery of content easy to understand in sizable chunks.

As an example of different sections, your first bullet on your agenda could be “The What”, second bullet can be “The Why”, third can be “The How” fourth bullet could be “The When”.

 

  1. Objectives

Write out the objectives of attending this webinar. You could talk about what your attendees will get out of being there, possible next steps after the webinar, or what webinar attendees will now be able to do because of participating in your webinar.

 

  1. Separate Sections for Each Agenda Item

This will be the bulk of your script as you are writing out the content for the entire reason people are attending your webinar in this part. This content is founded on your agenda and objectives of the webinar presentation.

Based on the sections you selected in your agenda and using the example in #2 (the what, why, how, when sections), you will write out all the content you want to say that explains each section individually. You will start with section 1 and write down everything you plan on saying to explain this section, and then move on to section 2, and so on. It is important for clarity that you don’t jump around the different sections during your script, as you might confuse your attendees. Of course, the content should build on each other – stay away from language like, “we will discuss this in section 4” if you are still in section 1.

 

  1. Stories and examples

Your script might include stories and examples alongside the main content for each of your sections.

These are great to include to further explain your point or concept. Another place to include these is after you have reviewed all the sections on your agenda, and then you share stories or examples to reinforce the content in a different way after your audience has had time to process the primary content.

Regardless of how you do it, ensure you have enough relatable stories or examples to include in the content. Stories help your audience understand complex ideas and for them to imagine taking the content and implementing it into their world.

 

Use stories in the content of your webinar presentation

 

  1. Recap / Takeaways

Once you’ve completed section #5 and #6, you will recap what you have shared today, why you have shared it and the top 3-5 things you hope your audience takes away and remembers post-webinar.

During this part would be a good time to encourage your audience to fill out a poll on the favorite thing they heard today, or start the Q&A portion.

 

  1. Next Steps for Attendees

When hosting a webinar, there is usually a next step or action you’d like your webinar audience to take. Perhaps that could be registering for another webinar, downloading an eBook, signing up for a one-on-one demo or encouraging them to buy your product. Whatever it is, give them all the information needed to make that next step. You don’t even want to assume they know what the next step is, or how to complete that step.

  1. Contact information

Share all the ways to get ahold of you, the webinar speaker, or the company you are speaking on behalf of. Include emails, phone numbers, websites and social sites.

 

  1. Closing Comments

Thank them for attending and if there is anything left unsaid, now is the time to say it or continue to reinforce the next action you’d like them to take and how it would benefit them.

As you write your script, take special care to write it out in a conversational tone as you would speak. Write out whole sentences, not fragments – that way if you get nervous or tripped up, you know exactly where to pick back up. And most importantly – practice, practice, practice your script until you can read it as though you are not actually reading from a script. Additionally, time yourself reading your script out loud to ensure you’ve written enough content to last the entire webinar presentation, or see if you need to cut content, as it could be too long.

Once your webinar script is complete and you feel comfortable delivering it as is, even without the aid of a PowerPoint, you can start building the webinar presentation PowerPoint!

You will use this final script to pull from for the content you place on your webinar PowerPoint slides. Take your script and using the highlight feature in Word, highlight the most important elements from each of the above 9 webinar script parts. The idea is to transition these parts to your PowerPoint slides. Building your webinar presentation PowerPoint will be quick and easy following this method.

Note, you will not actually copy and paste your highlighted content directly onto your slides. Instead, you will want to shorten your talk track into short, digestible snippets or “call-outs” to place on your slides.

 

Part 2 Teaser

In Part 2 of this blog series, I will share a sample PowerPoint template which includes what slides to include in your webinar presentation based on the 9 parts of the webinar script. Additionally, each slide in the template will have examples of the type of content to put on these slides. So don’t start building your webinar PowerPoint yet.

In Part 2 we will first review how to design and build your webinar presentation PowerPoint, then how to place your content on this final PowerPoint design and finally tips for adding images to enhance the final look of the PowerPoint.

Check out Part 2 Here

 

Get started!

To host an amazing webinar presentation, you’ll need premium webinar software.

Start your free trial of BigMarker today or send us a message to get in touch!