You might be facing it in flesh and bones. There are virtually tons of webinars out there today. And it might have you wondering what the differences are between webinars and many other forms of gathering and meeting people online. To clear it all up and leave you walking out of this article into an excellent grasp at them, we'll give you all you need to know about webinars.
What is a webinar?
A webinar is a seminar that takes place online. Based on the web, it's a live or pre-recorded conference in which participants and a presenter or group of speakers go over a specific topic that was defined ahead of time. Inscribed as a learning or promotional session, it can come in the form of a discussion, lecture, or workshop. The idea is for webinars to be interactive.
How does a webinar work?
There are several ways in which you can structure a webinar. If it's a live session, there's typically a pre-enrollment process. That requisite helps limit the number of participants that can connect to a live seminar all at once. And it also gathers data, a fact on which we'll expand below.
Now, enrolling ahead of time isn't necessarily a need. Webinars can also take place without any prior enrollment and be open to any live audiences that wish to take part in it.
There's also the option of going into what's called a pre-recorded webinar. Those are often a live session that someone just records while it happens. It then gets broadcast via email, social media, and other sharing options that make the most widespread use of that session.
Best webinar software
As the name webinar comes from the mix of web and seminar put together, of course, we use the term to describe an online event exclusively. For that, online software becomes mandatory. Since we're giving you all you need to know about webinars, we can't leave out the best webinar tools currently available.
It's essential to a webinar to use a type of video call conferencing software. And with a whopping 300 million daily meeting participants reported in April of this year, you're probably most familiar with Zoom. Yet, there are other options built especially for webinar functionality that we can mention. We'll list 10 webinar hosting options for you next:
In choosing any of the options we mentioned above, take into consideration you'll need your attendees to have access to the platform. So the most accessible and most famous of effective webinar software options typically are what suits webinar facilitators the most. You can choose the most sophisticated and priciest of options in the market. Yet, if your participants can't access it quickly, you'll lose many attendees. Just be mindful of that.
What to look out for in webinar software?
To ease your choice of what webinar platform to use, we'll give you a few details we consider essential in selecting a webinar tool. First, think of how many people you're expecting and leave a margin for error. Then, make sure you can have that many attendees where you intend to host a webinar. Of course, check how many presenters you can have as hosts at the same time, depending on how many people will be facilitating with or for you.
Then, inspect its features. Does it have a live chat for a Q&A session? What about taking polls, recording the meeting, or showing a whiteboard? What happens when you screen share? Make sure all of this is user-friendly, too. Check which option gives you the best video and sound quality, especially if you're having to put in some work or pay for your business.
You might need integrations, as well, so scout for those options if you need them. Of course, consider pricing and any automated processes the tool facilitates. These are just a few of the areas for testing and filtering webinar tools we can give this far.
Why webinars are valuable in business
Thinking from a startup perspective about webinars, and to truly round up just about all you need to know about webinars in a single spot, this tool fundamentally allows entrepreneurs and any business to interact and engage with their target audiences. It's a way to connect with leads and, more importantly, move them along our sales funnels.
Those learning from you, especially for free with prior enrollment, are quickly traveling what can be well-thought-out funnels. A pre-enrollment is a way to gather valuable data for marketing strategies.
Giving insight on a topic is a perfect environment to talk about a product or service offer. And the follow-up path can target sales as we'll rarely see down other sale funnels. Consider its enhanced engagement as the great opportunity that webinars offer.
How to create a webinar
We won't lie, however. We need to accept how leading a webinar can be a daunting experience for many. It's challenging to think about hosting what's typically a minimum of 45 minutes to an hour or 1.5 hours of a conference we give on a single topic. So here are a few tips on how to create a webinar.
Practice makes perfect
The first vital piece of advice we can give you is to rehearse it. Beyond the gift of preparation, rehearsal rounds will provide you with a real sense of just how short this lapse of a webinar can be.
Speak out of experience and expertise
The above thought alone takes us to our second best tip on how to create a webinar. Choose something within your area of expertise. Your webinar topic should ideally refer to something about which you're very passionate. Or think of a subject you genuinely handle to the best of your ability.
Choosing something about which you know a lot will make it easier for you to structure the topics you need to cover and to do so in a logical order. It will also let you make the best use of time with what you consider should be that webinar's fundamentals.
How to create a webinar presentation
Ah! An area in which we're just experts ourselves! To make it most accessible for you, we sincerely recommend you take a look at this webinar presentation. In the past, we've covered why templates make any presentation task more manageable. Yet, in a nutshell, they give you the structure to include what you need in a format that can be easily customized and branded, especially with the use of our AI.
Put succinctly, make sure the presentation you use for your webinar gives pointers and guidance to your audience that strengthens the point you're making. Brand it in accordance to your company and make sure it tells a story as much as the one you're telling yourself throughout your presentation.
You can also clear out two objectives in a single action by taking a look at how we host a webinar on presentation design. Our co-founder and VP of Design hosted what he titled Presentation Design 101: making your slides look epic. In this quick half-hour, he goes over best practices to create a compelling deck. From imagery to font choice and text size, we hand-hold in crafting beautiful presentations with creative design.
Feel you could use an extra hand with your webinar presentation slides? Check out our consulting and design services instead. When it comes to presentations, we've got you covered.