5 Steps to Hosting a Simple Webinar
Perhaps you are a small business owner that wants to cut back on in-person meetings, but you still need to provide your staff with business updates. Maybe your employees are all working remotely but you have to demo a new technology. Or, you have a new menu debuting that requires tutorials for your cooks. Restaurant owners can host cooking classes via webinar as a fun way to engage with their customers. The important items we need to communicate to our employees and customers run the gamut of possibilities. That’s why hosting a webinar is a great way to keep in touch with your staff and patrons, enabling you to provide them with content like training seminars, management announcements and updates, and more. Think of it as a big interactive meeting that’s entirely virtual. Today, we’ll talk through 5 steps to hosting a simple webinar.
1. Choose a Topic
Once you’ve decided you want to host a webinar, whether it be for customer engagement purposes or to connect with your staff in lieu of an in-person event, it’s critical that you come up with a topic—this should go without saying, of course. If there’s opportunity to invite guest speakers such as subject-matter experts or company executives, do so. The topic you choose for your first webinar will help set the tone for your webinar strategy. Webfx suggests choosing a topic that’s fairly specific in order to achieve maximum audience engagement. “An in-depth webinar on a specific topic is much more useful than a general presentation on a broad one,” according to their site. And be certain to give your webinar a great title, something that will really grab people’s attention.
2. Choose a Date & Time
Once you’ve nailed your topic down, choose a date and time for your webinar that will work for your audience. GoToWebinar suggests Thursdays between 11 AM – 2 PM EST are generally the best time to host a webinar. Webinar attendees will most likely attend the event live, but some will simply sign up to get the recording afterwards. More on that later.
3. Send Your Invites
Your awesomely titled webinar needs an equally awesome opportunity to really shine. Webinars generally require attendees to register, which gives you a great idea of the type of traction you’re gaining. Send the webinar invitation to your email list or employees. Post an advertisement on your website. Splash it over social media. Generate excitement by advertising the webinar far in advance and then posting creative “countdown” type messaging during the lead-up.
4. Do a Practice Run (or Two)
Though you’re not actually seeing your audience, it can be nerve-racking to host your first webinar. Doing a rehearsal several days before the event can help calm anxieties. It gives you the opportunity to experience and remedy any technical issues before you’re live. Plus, it gives you the confidence that you can deliver a truly impressive presentation.
5. Host and Record
To keep things running as smoothly as possible, make sure you’ve got a script to reference. Hosting a webinar on-the-fly is a recipe for disaster, so do yourself a favor a have detailed notes. When the day comes to host your webinar, definitely be certain to record it. Sending recordings out to those who registered but couldn’t attend live is a great way to keep them engaged and informed. Depending on your topic, making your recording available to the public can also generate awareness about your brand.
These days we’re all in front of our computers even more than ever, and a lot of consumers are hungry for content. Business owners are also looking for creative ways to engage their staff or provide required training opportunities. Following these 5 steps to hosting a simple webinar makes them fun, interesting, and a unique way to keep in touch—global pandemic or not.