When holding your first webinar it can be quite daunting! I know for us we were a little overwhelmed with the idea of putting on a live training session. We were incredibly nervous the night before and the following morning. So expect some overwhelm and expect some nerves and anxiety as it is all part of the process. I am going to share some tips with you to help you reduce some of that overwhelm and anxiety...
Its all in the preparation! How many times have you heard that? Well... I'm saying it again... its all in the preparation.
1. Get The People There
The first thing you want to do is make sure the people you want on the webinar, know that the webinar is taking place. So to do that you want to be notifying your list of subscribers and your followers on Facebook. To do this we have an autoresponder in which we collect the names and email addresses of all our subscribers. We send a broadcast to them a week before the webinar is taking place and we send one out at least 5-7 times that week. We also make sure that the subscribers that open the webinar email and register then go into a different list as we don't keep on then reminding them to do what they have already done. We also ensure we send an email the night before and one hour before the webinar is about to start.
We created 2 x 2 minute videos regarding our webinar, giving them information around what they should get out of the training. These videos formed part of our email broadcasts to our subscribers. We also used those videos to put on Facebook and we boosted that post and we also posted it to our Members Area in Facebook. Notifying as many people as possible that the webinar is taking place is the most important part of the process... its all in the marketing!
2. Prepare Your Powerpoint Slides
Another important part of the process is preparing your slides... if you decide you would like to do them. I think it provides visual interest on top of seeing us on the screen also. If you are going to include slides you must make them visually interesting by using big, bold, creative images that complement what you are saying at that time. If you use words in your slides try to keep them down to a minimum. The last thing people want to be doing is reading the whole time the webinar is in progress. For example, use of questions can be good for a slide, 5-10 worlds on the screen at one time. If you use bullet points on slides, only have a few of those and only include up to 5 bullet points on each. The important point with slides is that they are to provide visual interest only. We also mixed the training up between our faces on the screen and the slides. This again creates visual interest. You must include a powerpoint that gives the outline of the session. How long are we going to be on the webinar and what are we going to cover.
3. What Software Are You Going To Choose?
There are many different webinar and meeting software packages that you can use. I can only speak of two that I have used. The important features that they should include is multiple participants, the duration of the webinar and the ability to record them. The reason you want to record your webinars is you do the work once and you have content or material that you can re-purpose and load up into a members area or use it for further training and you could turn it into an article or blog. You could even include a workbook and charge people to view your webinars on your website.
Most programs allow multiple participants. The duration of the webinar can vary. We are currently using a program that allows the first 40mins for free. So you can open an account for free and you can record them also. We have subscribed for $21 per month and this allows us unlimited duration which is important when you want more in depth training sessions. Keeping in mind you always get on the webinar 10 minutes before it starts to test and greet the guests coming on.
4. Deliver Through Story Telling
Its great to include metaphors or story telling in your webinar. Participants get emotionally connected to the story and are learning at the same time. Stories can invoke strong emotions like sadness, anger, inspiration and motivation just to name a few. The particpants definitely connect and learn and time goes very quickly for them. They dont get bored as participants get very interested and involved as they can usually find themselves in those stories or something very relatable.
5. Chunking and sequencing
This is very important in any presentation or training being delivered. Firstly you want to deliver information in small chunks - bite size pieces. This breaks it down into digestible amounts of information being delivered. The sequencing is also very, very important as your training should flow from one chunk to the next. Also, your powerpoint slides need to reflect that flow also. There is nothing worse when you start to go of on a tangent and your powerpoint slides don't match up and you end up in a pickle with your training. It also creates confusion with your participants.
6. Invite Guest Speakers
Having guest speakers also provides variety and interest in your webinars. They can give their background and their story as to why they are creating a lifestyle through an online business. It is very important to follow some protocols when you are inviting guests. You must give them plenty of time, so we sent an email 5 days before the webinar was to take place. We outlined the protectionof their privacy, or you can discuss with them the possibility of it going public. and if that is ok. We also confirmed with them the night before that the times zones were correct. We also let them know how much time they had and when they were going to come on so it helps with their preparation.
7. Have A Back-Up Plan
We uploaded our powerpoint slides to Google+ so we both had access to those slides. Once created you want them stored in a safe location and accessible by all parties including the host. There is usually one host and you have to decide who logs in as the host. They will therefore have access to all the control panels. They can mute and un-mute participants when necessary. They can screen share so the powerpoint slides are showing and they can record the webinar. We also had a backup laptop to the side of the desktop and we ran the powerpoint slides in 'Note' mode so we could read if we had to.
8. Have A Call To Action
Finally you must have a call to action in your webinar or training. We will either have a link that we provide them where they click and get taken to our website for the offer. Or, we ask them to schedule a call with us and they can do that on our website as we have a calendar they can book into for a call.
A great webinar consists of metaphors and story telling. It should also include the 'meat and potatoes' where participants are going to receive some 'golden nuggets' of information that they can go away with. Provide incredible value and always close by inviting them to invite others that would be interested in learning more about your business or opportunity. Turn up early to your webinar, ready to meet and greet those coming on.
If you are creating your first webinar and would like some assistance in doing this you can schedule a call with us.