The possibility to use webinars to drive up sales or drive attendees away can be the difference between an interesting webinar and a boring one. The affordability of hosting webinars has become a two-edged sword. On the one hand, it has given marketers and small businesses the opportunity to host webinars and spread their message to a wider audience. However, it also means that, with less investment to lose, many present webinars with minimal thought and inspiration, a mistake that can be costly in sales and customer retention.
A boring webinar can actually do damage to your business. For example, if people have paid to attend your webinar and you don’t deliver, then they will be frustrated and feel that they’ve wasted their money. If it is a free webinar, then people don’t have any incentive to keep watching and they can quickly turn off, not to mention ever return for anything you offer in the future or complete any of your calls to action, either within the webinar or on your site.
The reality is that in today’s highly competitive Internet stage, you have to stand out by being useful or else your perspective audience will simply go elsewhere. And, being useful does not only mean offering valuable content in your presentation, it also means delivering that content is a way that is well received by a wide audience range.
A Webinar to Remember
How can you make sure that your webinar doesn’t become one to forget? Or even worse, one that no one can even remember!
One of the most important aspects is being a motivated, energized presenter. Of course, we all have different personalities, but there is enough that each presenter can do to make sure that the webinar engages attendees.
Have a picture of yourself near the start of the webinar. People like to know who they are engaging with and who the expert is.
Be enthusiastic about your subject. Enthusiasm will help you hold the interest of your audience and it will also rouse them to action. Enthusiasm can be generated if you think to yourself: why do the attendees need to hear this? How will they benefit from the product? If you can’t answer these questions yourself, how are you going to inspire your audience?
Have something new to say. Something new doesn’t necessarily mean something that the audience knows nothing about, but it does mean saying and explaining matters in a way that they’ve not considered before. So think outside the box.
Use slides effectively. Not using slides properly can frustrate your audience. How should slides be used?
- Don’t have them showing for too long.
- Use some animation on the slides.
- Highlight the specific area on the slide that you are talking about. This can be done by preparing slides in a way that the areas not being discussed at slightly greyed out.
- Don’t show slides too quickly. The audience needs time to digest the material. Remember that there could be a slight time lag and therefore a short slide could become even shorter during the webinar.
- Use bulleted points on slides, not text.
Don’t read your information. Rather, have an outline as a memory aid. Reading a script will definitely bore your audience. You may be worried, of course, that you forget something. If you use an outline, then you will have noted the important points. Specific facts and figures should also be written out. Very important points should also be on slides. If, however, you do forget something, it is not something that the audience would realize anyway. Preparation is the key.
Visual contact. You may not be able to see your audience, but they can probably see you. Make sure that you deliver your presentation direct to the camera – not to the picture of yourself on the screen!
Smile! Even if you are not seen on the webinar people will be able to tell if you are smiling. Smiling makes us speak better. If you’re the ‘serious’ type of person, you could post a smiley face beside the camera. That will remind you to smile.
Do a mock presentation more than once. Scottish poet, Robbie Burns said: “Oh if some could give us the power to see ourselves as others see us, then this would free us from many a blunder.” So, you may not feel comfortable watching yourself, but it’s the best way to find out how to jazz up your presentation and make it appealing for others.
Presenting webinars can be a rewarding experience both for you, as a presenter, and for your audience. Take the time to jazz up your presentation using the tips that have been given here. The more care you take in your preparation and attention to detail the bigger your rewards from the webinar will be.