What is a Webinar?

By Belal Atiyyah

While a variety of terms are often used to describe an online presentation event – webinar, webcast, web conferencing, to name a few – many people are still left wondering, “What is a webinar?”

When you Google the definition of a webinar, the response provided is “a seminar conducted over the internet.” Oh but there’s so much more! A webinar is an online communication experience that allows participants from around the globe to connect and interact during a presentation.  

Types of Webinars

There are many different types of webinars. It’s certainly not limited to “a seminar”. In our 15+ years of webinar experience, we work with clients to help them host a variety of virtual events. These include continued education webinars for CPAs, marketing webinars to promote lead generation, online product demos for sales teams, and thought leadership webinars, to name a few. Beyond information dissemination, every webinar should have a specific goal. Whether it’s a town hall meeting or employee training, specific content is created and used to accomplish this predetermined goal.

Webinar Tools

Common engagement tools used during a webinar are a slides presentation followed by a Question and Answer session. Research shows that to hold the attention of your audience, it’s best to include additional options to engage and convey your message. Polls, surveys, and short video clips are a great way to break away from the expected hour slide presentation. The aim is to get your audience thinking, ask questions of themselves and you – essentially to make it an enriching experience.  

You’re probably wondering how to orchestrate a professional webinar. And the answer is simple, yet hard – lots of research and preparation. You need to know your audience, your content, and your ability to deliver your message. Fortunately, technology is here to help you. The best possible way for presenters to host a flawless webinar is to use some webinar automation. Even the best presenters may get tongue tied at times or have an unexpected emergency pop up. By pre-recording the presentation, you’re able to ensure you host the perfect webinar. And even better, you can re-purpose the pre-recorded presentation to host that flawless presentation time and time again.

With years of experience developing the most flexible webinar automation technology, FLOW allows you to mix pre-recorded webinars, with live audience interactivity. Now instead of having your sales team host that same product demo 5 times a week, they can record the perfect presentation once and just focus on the audience’s questions while the webinar plays in stealth mode. The ideal mix will be to have at least one third of your webinar with live presenters, and the rest automated. Your audience will respond well to your personal live greetings, and context-sensitive Q&A. They will also respect the effort you took to create professional slides, videos, and thoughtful survey questions to be able to follow up appropriately. 

Producing Your Webinar

A webinar actually starts the moment the registration page is created, not when transmission starts. To host an effective webinar, you need to identify and target the attendees you would like to attend. You will want to clearly show the benefit and value your participants will take away from your webinar. So, if you’re hosting a webinar covering the best steaks restaurants, you’ll want to know your audience isn’t all vegetarian. Be mindful when you match the benefit to your specific audience. 

Equally as important with your online event, you will want to follow up with your audience afterwards to thank them for attending and offer them some call to action – a next event, a newsletter, a reading list. This approach increases the wavelength of your attendee engagement. This is also a great time to provide any additional pieces of value to your participants, or a survey to gain feedback into the attendee experience. And let’s not forget about sharing the recording. Life happens, and safe to say at least 1 person that registered isn’t going to be able to attend (typically less than half of your registrants actually turn up to a free webinar). Providing the recording allows you to maximize your content after the live event ends. 

The digital world of webinars allows your message to expand from a small group of people in front of you, to a worldwide audience. From anywhere to everywhere. Are you ready to elevate your presentation?

If you’re considering an important online presentation, please get in touch for a no obligation consultation at sales@flowapp.com. 

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