Educational webinars are all over the web, and for good reason. Using webinar technology to hold educational seminars online is one of the most effective tools to bring people together for learning no matter where they maybe in the world. Educational webinars are used by government entities, schools, and also by marketers and businesses who want to reach a targeted audience in their industry or niche. The use of a webinar platform allows you to reach an unlimited audience pool without them or you ever having to leave home.
While webinars are an exciting form of media, they can be daunting, especially when using them as a teaching tool. One of the main reasons for this is that you cannot see your audience, and so their engagement and interest can be harder to gage, two important elements that help teachers perfect their art in a traditional classroom.
10 Tips To Rock Your Next Educational Webinar
Here are some guidelines to help you rock your next educational webinar.
1. Be Creative. Don’t be afraid to research and try new ideas for your website. Slide shows are the standard, but it doesn’t mean they are the only tool available. Consider interactive aspects such as polls, question-and-answer sessions, or interactive graphs, if available.
2. Remember Your Audience. Having a general idea of how much your audience knows about the subject of your webinar provides the context you need to keep them interested. It will help the presenter to not spend too much time on general overviews. Asking beforehand the kind of information they would like to know about your subject can be a great benefit as well.
3. Advertise. Make sure you webinar is well-known on all the social media outlets your company uses. This means updating them regularly and posting about it more than once (but not more than once a day, as this can lead to tuning out). Also be sure that there is a clear, obvious link to the presentation right on your company’s main page- any difficulty in finding the webinar itself will detract customers.
4. Call for Questions. The adage is a cliché, but still true: “There are no stupid questions, only stupid answers.” While public input needs to be closely monitored to avoid virtual hecklers (which is rarely a problem unless you are presenting something especially controversial), genuine curiosity needs to be addressed in your webinar.
5. Interact with the audience. Interactivity is an excellent way to ensure your audience’s attention and help them retain what they have learned. Since you do not have the advantage of hands-on activities in an online webinar, asking for questions using a chat feature will help to keep them engaged.
6. Compartmentalize. Remember, if you feel like you cannot cover all the necessary content in the hour or so your audience has dedicated to the webinar that means that the opportunity for new content is available. Making fresh, new content will allow you to diversify between a general and advanced level and create loyal, returning customers.
7. Know Your Tone. Being able to speak one-on-one with each person in the webinar rather than a general audience is a great way to maintain focus. An example of how to achieve this is to have an interview with another person during the webinar or to describe whatever your subject is to a person who is physically in the room with you during the presentation.
8. Remember Your Focus. If you are planning to use your educational webinar to market your product or service, make your intention clear before starting the webinar, and keep it brief. Your audience does not want to feel as if they have spent their precious free time watching an infomercial, and it will leave a poor impression, regardless of the quality of the presentation as a whole.
9. Make it Accessible. Especially if your business is too small for social media or IT staff, it is crucial to make sure that your webinar will work across multiple browsers, operating systems, and platforms. Remember that mobile access is a must- your customers will be trying to watch your presentation with a smartphone or tablet, and they may be running on limited data access.
10. Entertain. Don’t be afraid to have some fun with your subject. Videos, anecdotes, and pictures, as long as they are relevant to the content at hand, can be a great way to leave a positive impression. Not everyone can dress up in their subject like Mrs. Frizzle of The Magic School Bus, but there are always original ways to incorporate your theme.
Most importantly, practice makes perfect. Using these general tips with discipline over time can make a serious difference in the quality of your content and generate more business.