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Perhaps one of the most prevalent challenges in utilizing webinars to reach your client base is finding ways to keep their attention throughout the presentation. You’re not in front of them, so they don’t exactly feel the pressure to at least pretend to be listening to what you’re saying. They can walk away from their computers or take a call at any point in time.

It’s not offense to you, it’s just human nature. We’ll get away with what we can. But, people just don’t realize that they’re losing out on the valuable information you have to offer by not giving you their full attention for the duration of your presentation. Here are several ways to go about holding your audience’s concentration for your entire webinar.

 

Keep It Short And Sweet

Nothing is more boring than beating a topic to death. Droning on and on about the same thing, finding different ways to present the same idea over and over will surely have your audience dropping like flies in no time. Be sure that you have a collection of short, meaningful topics to cover and that you do so as concisely as possible.

 

Use Laymen’s Terms

This is not the place to demonstrate that you received a PhD in Russian Literature. Use language that your customer’s will understand and relate to. If you’re speaking above their heads, there’s no way they’re going to hang on until the end. If it’s a labor to even keep up with the gist of the discussion they’ll bail quickly.

 

Audience Interaction

It’s a lot easier to bow out of a webinar when no one is watching. While you’re not exactly going to have a webcam on your participants, you could opt to open a group chat or have a call in number to facilitate group discussions. Your customers will be able to hear from their peers who may be struggling with similar business issues and will be able to ask questions specific to their own concerns. This will not only keep people engaged in your session until the end of the webinar, but it also adds considerably more value overall.

 

Use More Imagery

Ever heard anyone joke about ‘death by PowerPoint’? Seeing endless slides filled with bullet points is the definition of a boring presentation. Couple that with the fact that the person watching it is likely sitting in a cozy chair, at home in their pajamas and you’ve got a recipe for a snooze fest. Utilizing graphics and interesting photos/pictures to support your topics not only helps keep people’s attention, but studies have shown that it also helps us retain the information associated with them. Double whammy.

 

Use A Presenter With A Dynamic Voice

Think back to when you went to school, ever had a teacher that spoke in a drone like monotone that made you want to take nap with each lecture? Well that is what happens when a webinar presenter is not dynamic in voice and affect to hold the audience’s attention. This is not meant to offend, but a simple fact, if you know that you are a meek person, with a quiet voice, then please get someone else to present. People are much more likely to listen to someone who is boisterous, high energy and can hold people’s attention with their voice and affect that is both dynamic, engaging and exciting.

 

Show Real Life Examples

This is not always possible or relevant, but in many niches, demonstrating real life examples either through video, software demos, images or using other methods like an online search is much more interesting than simply speaking about the topic. For example, if the webinar is about online marketing, rather than telling the audience how Google works, why not show them live by accessing the search engine and searching for some terms. This is one of the biggest reasons for using webinars over text is that the platform allows you to use desktop sharing, and other forms of media to get your point across.

 

Giveaway

This is a method that typically works well and you don’t have to give away a flat-screen TV for it to work. Let the audience know that at the end of the webinar you’ll have a trivia question based on info received from the webinar.

If they’re the first one to chime in with the correct answer, they’ll take home the win. It will help your chances of getting more people to stick around and to actually pay attention to the topic of discussion. You could do something like a Starbucks gift card or a free service from your company. The latter is a great way to get your foot in the door with a new customer.

Try a couple of these out and let us know how it goes!

Posted by Jarek Wasielewski

Jarek is the Content Manager at ClickMeeting. He is responsible for providing educational contents for current and prospective users.