Cynthia Clay
Cynthia Clay
CEO,Netspeed Learning Solutions

Webinar.jpgIf you are an author, speaker, or consultant you’ve probably been invited to deliver a webinar on a topic in your area of expertise. In fact, one of the most useful tools in your marketing arsenal is the delivery of an engaging webinar. Apply these six tips to get the best results:

  1. Know Your Audience
    Before you plan your webinar, make sure you understand the needs of your audience. What is their biggest pain point? What can you show them that will make a real difference in resolving their immediate challenge? Keep your focus on helping them solve their on-the-ground problems.
  2. Avoid Talking Head Syndrome
    The first time you deliver a webinar, you may fall into the trap of talking endlessly over bullet point-laden slides. As you drone on, you become a boring talking head. Your participants will likely be looking for opportunities to check their email or get a cup of coffee. Don’t talk at them. Instead look for opportunities to stimulate their interest in your topic with well-placed polls and opportunities to chat.
  3. It’s Visual
    You’ve probably heard the phrase “Death by PowerPoint” and the common advice not to rely on slides to deliver your message. That may be good advice in a face-to-face presentation, but when you deliver a webinar, your slides become one of the best vehicles you have for delivering a compelling message. The rule of thumb I recommend is to spend no more than one minute per slide. Use graphics to capture attention and stimulate thinking. Limit text to one or two key ideas per slide. You may wind up with 60 slides in a 60-minute webinar. That’s okay. Just make them 60 brilliant slides.
  4. Make it Useful
    If you want their attention, they have to see the immediate value of participating. What practical suggestions and examples can you provide? Avoid spouting theories; instead ensure they walk away with something they can immediately apply to their work. Be generous. Give away some of your best ideas. You’ll establish your credibility and increase the likelihood that someone will seek out your expertise.
  5. Engage and Interact Continuously
    Engage your learners every three minutes with a poll, a request for input, or an opportunity to contribute in chat. Use all of the interaction tools in your web conference platform to keep your learners actively participating. Just make sure that the continuous engagement is essential to the purpose of the webinar.
  6. Tell Stories
    You’ve probably got a million stories and examples about what has worked or not worked in your field of expertise. So share them! If you have key concepts you want them to remember, then wrap each key concept in an entertaining story. Brain research demonstrates that we often recall a colorful story first, followed by the relevant practical advice that came with it.

So there you have it: Six success tips for creating and producing an awesome webinar.  Follow them and you will garner esteem and authority in your field.

Image source: venimo / Thinkstock