How To Host a Webinar – A Step-By-Step Guide
Webinars can be effective promotional tools for your business, enabling you to demonstrate your company's industry expertise and generate new leads and sales. Many business owners find the thought of hosting one intimidating, but the process is surprisingly straightforward. We'll take you through it one step at a time.
1) Decide Which Type Of Webinar You Want To Host
There are several types of webinar to choose from, each with its own advantages:
- Pre-recorded – if you opt to host a pre-recorded webinar, or 'evergreen webinar', you can either provide viewers with access to footage of a live webinar you've held previously, so they can view it on demand, or record a new video. The upside of recording a new webinar is that you can make sure that the content is error-free and on-brand. You can also record it as many times as you like and edit it if necessary. However, as pre-recorded webinars aren't interactive, they can come across more like lectures.
- Pre-recorded as live – also known as 'simulated live webinars', these can be recorded in advance and scheduled to be shown at specific times. As a result, you can include some interactive elements. You can include interactive handouts, surveys and even allow attendees to ask questions which you can provide answers to once your webinar has ended. These interactive elements will boost audience engagement, but you'll also be able to make sure that you're happy with your webinar's content before you broadcast. However, you won't be able to completely replicate the live experience.
- Live – when you host a live webinar, your attendees can tune in at a set time on a set date, and watch your broadcast in real-time. They can also ask questions that you can answer straight away. Live webinars, which are also sometimes referred to as 'webcasts' or 'web conferences', usually seem more natural than their pre-recorded counterparts.
2) Get To Grips With The Practical Details
Once you've decided which type of webinar you want to host, you'll need access to the right technology. If you opt to pre-record your webinar, you can host the video on your website easily enough, but if you want to broadcast live or include interactive elements, you'll need to use an appropriate webinar platform. A number of companies provide user-friendly hosting platforms including Zoom, GoToWebinar, and Webex so you'll be able to prepare, schedule and broadcast webinars with ease.
3) Market Your Webinar Effectively
Of course, your webinar will only be effective if you get plenty of attendees. You'll need to create a sign-up form, either on your website or on a landing page, and you’ll need to implement a marketing campaign. Your campaign could involve email marketing, social media activity, blogging, the use of webinar listing sites or even creating teaser videos for your company's YouTube account. Once you've encouraged people to sign up, you'll also need to send them reminders to make sure they actually watch.
Providing The Right Information
Whatever marketing methods you choose to use, make sure you provide prospective attendees with all the information they need to know, such as the webinar title, the topics you'll be covering, the speaker details, the time and date of your broadcast, and the link that they'll need to use.
If you aren't confident about putting all this into practice, you could hire some experts to help you out. As business growth specialists, we have a wealth of webinar hosting experience – simply contact us to find out more.