“Necessity is the mother of all inventions,” a very famous quote by Plato. So are we all not enjoying this techy world and the inventions to get to use every day.
Sometimes it’s a phone being released, and sometimes it’s a new method of doing something more innovatively.
Today we are going to talk about Seminars to Webinars. A little about its history and how you should plan your webinar.
So why did we need to have webinars when we were happy with the way things used to go at seminars? How come we needed to change seminars and have something more effective out of them?
Are you also thinking about what I am? Yes, how can seminars ever be replaced?
Well, allow me to take you along on a journey of efforts done in more than the last 50 years to make seminars cost-effective, interactive, and almost the same as a Seminar. Plus, in the age of the internet, it has to be virtual.
Yup, you read it correctly; the webinar can be defined as a virtual seminar. I make things simpler for you to understand always. And this can’t be any easier.
Webinars started when everyone in the United States was looking to attend universities. The universities didn’t have any space to accommodate additional students. There were limited IT Experts.
A need to increase the number of IT Experts and educate more people on PLATO arose.IT resources from the University of Illinois, and Control Data Corporation worked together and developed PLATOi.e., Programmed Logic for Automated Teaching Operations.
PLATO was the first-ever Webinar platform that managed to unite features such as a live online forum, online chat, instant messaging, attach to email, send an email, share remote desktop, and document collaboration.
Since then, there are many more webinar platforms, and they are the new fashion of the tech industry.
Okay, enough about the history and development.
Let’s dig in and see what needs to be done to host an amazing webinar.
What needs to be done?
So now it is 2021, and the COVID pandemic changed the lifestyle completely. It changed everything and hit every business hard. Every business was, other than those which were established to grow virtually.
Due to social distancing, all gatherings, conferences, and seminars were either delayed or shifted online in the form of a webinar.
Zoom got famous, and that’s how we continued meeting virtually. A survey conducted in the first quarter of 2021 reflects that this virtual meeting app reached 40 million downloads in the Asia-Pacific region.
Another survey reported that a 36% increase had been made from Feb to Mar 2020 among the brands giving webinars.
Then stats make me say that webinars are the real thing and you should not waste any opportunity to arrange one.
So, when you have many people around who are looking to attend a gathering, be it official, informational, or a launch of a new product, you need to manage them wisely.
Otherwise, things can go south, and that’s a perfect recipe for disaster.
To avoid the mistakes I have made, I need you to be very vigilant and learn from this article about all the things that can go wrong while planning and hosting a webinar.
For the sake of understanding, I am going to divide the topic into subsections. What do you think, how many components or subsections a webinar has? For me, it has three sections that are further split into more categories.
A webinar has three sections
- The content you are going to present
- Choose the time for your webinar
- Prepare accordingly
Let’s discuss each of these sub-sections of a webinar to see the importance of these sections.
What is it that you want your audience to know? Is it a lecture, an introductory note to a presentation, a product launch, or what exactly is it that you want to discuss with your customers?
You need to understand the type of audience you are inviting and the product you have to present. Even a slight mismatch in interest matters the most, and people will be bored.
Not to forget that your effort will be wasted.
So what is it that you can do to plan your content wisely? First, you have to list the following activities to make your content interesting enough that it sells itself.
- Know your reason for choosing the topic or product or idea or whatever it is that you want to talk about
- Invite people who are interested and would like you to talk about that topic or product, or idea
- Make impressive presentation
- Engage with the audience to make them feel lively
- An interactive game, a question, or even a joke can make them give their attention to you
Decide what time suits you and then advertise the time to the audience. Keep a flexible window to start the webinar. You need to know how long the content will take to finish.
Don’t choose weekends and lunch breaks or after office hours to conduct a webinar until your audience specifically requests that because you don’t need an exhausted audience.
So you need to follow the following to control time.
- Keep the webinar precise and to the point
- Divide the whole plan and follow that accordingly
- Keep it simple and short
Prepare yourself well. Prepare to be questioned. Read and be clear about whatever it is that you want to talk about. Don’t include anything that confuses you.
Start your webinar with a catchy statement. Fancy, not wrong or irrelevant. Add a short reference video and introduce the topic to the audience.
Let your audience know why that is important and why to listen to it from you. Once all that is done, now advertise! Advertise everywhere on all social media platforms.
To present like a professional, you need to follow the following things for an impressive presentation:
- Choose the template with contrast colors. Please should get to see the presentation.
- Create your script and prepare your flashcards with content information for you to look up to.
- Don’t get stuck; make something up. Something clever. Or you may ask a question from the audience.
- Use less wording in your presentation and more graphics and animations. People tend to look up to stats and listen to what you have to say.
- Make a perfect ending. You have to. That’s the only thing that can’t go wrong at any cost.
- Last but not least, conduct an open session. Let the people ask you a question. It has to end with people leaving with information rather than being bored.
Understand that nowadays, more and more information is being generated every passing minute. And one doesn’t have time to listen to it.
Launching a webinar comes with an overwhelming feeling. But it is the necessity of these times. It is complicated yet very comfortable to arrange. Since I have been using webinars for a while, now I have become very comfortable with the idea of arranging a new webinar.
I still believe I can improve my skills.
In these troubled times, social distancing and lockdowns, the webinar is the only tool (irrespective of what platform you use) that allows you to engage with your customers strictly following pandemic limitations.
Webinars help you to learn something new and teach something from within your home at your convenience. Understanding the importance of webinars nowadays will help us grow our businesses in the pandemic.
One last thing, don’t forget to enjoy. Because if you are not enjoying doing something, then you will not be creative.
Without creativity, you can’t engage with your customer on any intellectual level. As a result, they will be bored, and you will start to lose your reputation before having one.
Planning your webinar doesn’t have to be hard. So don’t stress, plan accordingly!!!