Media training yesterday, a lively event, and one of the delegates asked me how he should make his webinars lively. He found them difficult because there was no immediate comeback from the audience. I agree; I’ve sat through a number of them and am presenting one to fully launch my online media training course, currently in preview.
It’s an issue. My colleague who’s arranging Wednesday’s event has attended webinars in which the text box has been full of people not talking business but arranging where to go for a curry in the evening. So here are some tips that I’ll be using as presenter:
- Find some typical audience members beforehand and ask what they would like to see in terms of content. Address it and address them by name during the webinar. The audience needs to know you’re listening as well as broadcasting, and talking to them.
- Watch that text box and don’t blame people if they’re distracted – it’s my job to keep them engaged, not their duty to support me.
- Keep it short and all points brief. Allow for the audience to have different priorities from mine.
- Have an expert handle the technology while I handle the content. Yes, I could “pilot” the thing reasonably well but no, if I’m trying to focus on presenting as well I don’t think that will work.
- Don’t single people out and ask them questions – I’ve seen this in webinars, someone’s suddenly handed the chance to speak and unless they wanted it, it just embarrasses them.
- Keep the pace going – lapses in energy are emphasised rather than helped on video.
- Take all the feedback I can so the next one is even better!
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