7 main mistakes of leading online webinars and how to avoid them

Webinars have long become an effective channel for promoting a variety of goods and services. However, along with successful webinars, there are many online seminars, the results of which are far from expected. In this article we will look at the 7 most common mistakes of leading webinars and find the most acceptable ways to solve them.

1. Promotion Week

Many companies start actively promoting a webinar just a week before the event. But as ON24 research shows, your audience size can increase by 36% if you start a marketing campaign earlier than a week before the webinar.

Solution: start the promotion 2-3 weeks before the webinar. A longer period of time will allow you to be more flexible - you can monitor the effectiveness of different promotion channels, disable the less effective and engage new ones.

2. Veiled advertising

Users come to the webinar to get answers to their questions and find new ideas. If you immediately begin to advertise or sell, you will not be able to earn the trust of the audience. No one wants to waste time listening to ads.

If you give potential customers new ways to solve their problems, you will prove yourself to be an expert, which ultimately will allow you to more effectively present your product or service.

Solution: start the promotion 2-3 weeks before the webinar. A longer period of time will allow you to be more flexible - you can monitor the effectiveness of different promotion channels, disable the less effective and engage new ones.

3. Reading slides

Do not read slides during the performance - a popular and banal advice to the leading webinars. Despite this, from time to time, you can meet speakers who practically verbatim repeat the contents of the presentation. This annoys the audience — they might watch a presentation instead of attending a webinar.

Solution: : use slides only as an additional material to your presentation. They will help you attract the attention of the audience, make accents, emphasize your statements, but in no way replace your presentation.

4. Bad sound

Poor sound quality nullifies the effectiveness of any webinar. If participants are hard of hearing, they will simply leave the webinar. If you give potential customers new ways to solve their problems, you will prove yourself to be an expert, which ultimately will allow you to more effectively present your product or service.

In addition, poor sound quality can cause students a sense of lack of professionalism, which can lead to a similar perception of the company as a whole.

Solution: Before starting the webinar, make sure that you eliminate all the distractions that may be heard by your audience - turn off the phone and intercom, turn off Skype and other unnecessary computer programs.

  • Be sure to test the site where you are going to conduct the webinar, half an hour before the broadcast. If you notice problems with sound, try to fix them or use another webinar service. 
  • If you are broadcasting from the office, ask your colleagues not to bother you.
  • It is better to conduct a webinar in a small room, a large room can cause an echo effect.
  • Do not use the microphone built into your computer. Better use a headset or a special microphone.

Use special care when choosing a headset. No matter how interesting your webinar is, it will fail if users hear you poorly. Most computers and laptops have built-in microphones and speakers, but as a rule they provide poor sound quality and cause an echo effect.

To conduct a webinar, you can use a conventional headset with a plug or a USB headset. In most cases, a USB headset is ideal for a webinar. Due to the built-in sound card, it gives a cleaner sound and effectively fights against extraneous noise

If your host hosts several presenters who are in the same room, you can use the speakerphone. This is a special equipment consisting of a microphone and speaker. The speakerphone allows you to transmit sound at a distance of 3 meters. At the same time, it eliminates acoustic echo and extraneous noise.

Now that you know what equipment is needed to conduct a webinar, it is worth considering how to attract more users to the webinar.

5. Non-compliance with regulations

Webinar attendees are familiar with the situation when the host was late or delayed the duration of the webinar. Of course, no one is safe from unforeseen situations. However, remember that the little things make up the general impression of you.

Solution: respect the time of the audience. If you announced a 60-minute webinar, then let your presentation take no more than 45 minutes, and spend 15 minutes answering the listeners' questions.

Come into the webinar room 5-10 minutes before the webinar. This time will be enough to connect all the necessary equipment for the webinar and start broadcasting on time.

6. Forget about the audience

One of the key features of the webinar is interactivity. Therefore, do not turn the webinar into a lecture. Communicate with your audience throughout the webinar. No matter how interesting the topic of your webinar is, if you do not interact properly with the audience, interest in your presentation will fall. 

Solution:
modern webinar programs provide many tools for interacting with students: polls, tests, chat, document sharing and much more. Ask questions during the webinar, conduct polls, invite participants to live communication, organize raffles and quizzes. The more diverse the methods you use, the more active and involved your audience will be.

7. Lack of analytics

Most presenters after the webinar are limited to counting the number of customers they managed to attract. And at the same time they forget to analyze the information that they received during the webinar.

Solution:
One of the marketing benefits of webinars is that they provide a wealth of user data. During the webinar, you can ask the audience for their age, position, which companies represent and so on. In addition, you can collect behavioral information about participants - the duration of the webinar, what questions were asked. You can also connect Google Analytics to the webinar room and get more useful information.

Originally published May 2, 2019