Communication with customers, employees and prospects has changed from being an in-person process to a virtual one. In today’s fast-paced world, it’s often better to create a webinar to communicate at-scale, build authority and engage with your audience.
If you don’t know how to make a webinar, the key most important thing to remember is that it’s all about your audience.
Before you begin, you need all of the right tools to create a webinar.
5 Must-have Tools for Creating a Webinar
What makes webinars such a success is that there are platforms and tools that can help make the presentation engaging. The tools you’ll need are:
1. Camera. A higher-priced webcam is a good option. You can pick up an HD camera for relatively cheap. Attendees expect good resolutions.
2. Lighting. If you don’t have ample lighting in the room, you’ll want to invest in lighting that will make it easy for attendees to see you.
3. Green Screen. Want to use a special background or a virtual background? Invest in a green screen. You don’t need this tool, but it’s a good addition to some webinars.
4. Microphone. A good microphone will cut down on background noise and ensure that poor audio doesn’t derail your webinar. Consider buying a boom arm to make microphone use more natural and less cumbersome.
5.Webinar Solution. What solution will you be using for your webinar? There are a lot of great platforms to choose from, including:
You'll find a lot of additional webinar solutions that can help you bring your webinar to life. Research each solution and the features that they offer to find one that fits your needs best. Once you’ve chosen your platform that you’ll use to host your webinar and have all of the equipment ready to use, it’s time to move on to the logistics of a webinar.
Start Thinking About a Webinar Format
You should be thinking about the type of format you want for your webinar well in advance. Formats are often:
Single speaker option where you or someone else will do all of the talking. This format is great when trying to demonstrate your expertise and demonstrate your product.
Interview formats involve you interviewing experts in a subject or field.
Panels are large-scale webinars where multiple people will be talking, and there will be a moderator that ensures every aspect of the webinar goes off without an issue.
Q&A formats are a nice way to engage with an audience. This format allows you to talk directly to your audience and is often the most engaging.
At this point, you’re really at a good starting point to create a webinar. But you still have quite a few steps remaining.
How to Make a Webinar a Success in 9 Step Process
1. Decide on a Topic
You should have a general idea of what your topic will be at this point. Sit down and solidify all of the details. You'll want to pick the following:
Main theme of the webinar
Questions that will be answered
Goal of creating the webinar
If you plan to have multiple speakers, be sure everyone that will be speaking has accepted well in advance and that you perform a complete test run of the event.
2. Pick a Date and Time Using Data
What date and time will your webinar be scheduled? Attendees need to add the event to their schedule, so it’s vital to have this information available as soon as possible. What's the best time?
Statistically, 2 PM EST seems to be the best time to host webinars.
With more attendees being available at this time, it’s good to go with what works. The idea is that people will be past lunch on the East coast and haven’t gone to lunch yet on the West coast.
3. Brand Your Webinar to Build Trust and Authority
Your webinar should be branded with your logo and website at the very least. When you send out materials, reminders, invites or even follow up emails, you’ll want to brand everything to build authority and trust.
4. Promote Your Webinar and Send Out Invitations
Promoting a webinar is a major part of the process. You'll want to use your existing networks to get the word out, including:
Social media accounts
You can also advertise and pay for promotions. Ideally, you’ll start promoting your webinar 4 weeks before the event. Start sending out your invites, and also don’t forget to have reminder sequences in place to remind any potential attendees of the event.
5. Create Your Webinar’s Content
If you plan on having any additional forms of content, now is the time to create them. This may be:
6. Do a Test Run
Technical glitches and issues can make a webinar seem rushed and unprofessional. You should perform a test run to ensure that when you go live, everything is up to standards. This run will allow you to correct potential unforeseen issues when you do host the webinar.
7. Host the Webinar
The big day is here. Host your webinar and get those initial jitters over with. It can be intimidating and scary, but hosting your first webinar will provide you with invaluable experience that will make your next webinar even better.
8. Follow Up Within 24 Hours
Send out a survey or a “thank you” to all attendees within 24 hours. This is a nice way to answer questions that people may not have been able to ask, or you may be able to generate ideas for your next webinar with the feedback provided.
9. Provide a Taped Recording to Everyone That Signed Up
A lot of people that sign up for your webinar will not attend. Be sure to send out a taped recording that allows the people that signed up to view the webinar at their own leisure. This taped recording can also be kept as a content asset that you can use for other promotional purposes.
Pro Tip: Create and promote a hashtag when you create a webinar. The hashtag can be used by attendees to tell others about the webinar and provides an easy means of communicating with others talking about your event on social media.
Now that you know how to create a webinar from scratch, the next step is to host your first webinar. Don't be discouraged if your audience is small initially. Over time, you’ll build an audience, learn from mistakes that you may have made in your first webinar and will boost your business in the process.