Audio webinars are one of the easiest and most commonly used webinar types around (get the full guide of webinar types here Not all webinars are created equal. They have been around from the start and many organisations rely on them for a number of purposes. One of the most commonly used purposes is marketing and lead generation. External audiences tend to be less forgiving than internal audiences and so it is important to get your audio webinar recording absolutely right. In this blog post we look at six top tips to improve your audio webinars.
As standard, most audio webinar tools provide a good experience and quality, provided you don’t misuse webconferencing tools for webinars. What do we mean? As a rule of thumb, the audience should never have to dial in by phone in order to participate. That kind of webconferencing technology is for meetings, not webinars. It’s a very important point, but we digress.
There are ways of improving the experience for audio webinar attendees and raise your game. One downside of audio webinars is that they can be less engaging than video webinars, because they are less visual. So here are some top tips to improve your audio webinars:
1. Improve the audio quality
As standard, audio webinars are recorded via your phone set and phone line. This is a quick and easy way to for presenters to connect to the live stream and record their audio. But you can be limited by the quality of your desk phone handset (never use mobiles!) and phone connection (do you use VoIP?).
Check in advance which devices your presenters will be using. Have a dry run with them from the exact location and device they will be using on the live day. This way you can determine whether all presenters have the similar audio levels and clarity. A good webinar provider should be able to help you with that as well. There a few worse things than having a faintly audible presenter turned onto full volume, when the next presenter’s booming voice almost breaks your speakers (or ear drums).
In addition, you are able to improve the audio quality to near digital radio quality by increasing the rate your audio is encoded. The result is a crisp and full audio sounds that is easy to listen to all day. You won’t be able to do this via the phone, so to achieve this you will need some additional audio recording and encoding equipment. If you only ever plan to run one or two webinars then the investment is probably not worth it, but if audio webinars are to be a regular feature in your content marketing activity it is something you should consider. You will need some lapel mics, encoding software and some additional hardware. Too geeky and too much to list everything here, but get in touch with us and we’ll happily advise of the best setup for you.
2. Manage your presenters
If you have more than one webinar contributor – and that could be as simple as one moderator and one presenter – then you’ll want to make sure you manage their contributions. Contributors who talk over each other can be difficult to make out and understand on an audio webinar. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t encourage an animated discussion or conversation, but if important points get lost in cross-talk your audience will miss out. If need be, get contributors to repeat an interesting point for the audience.
This issue is amplified when you have more than two presenters. If you are planning to run a panel discussion with 3 or more presenters, you may want to consider running a video webcast instead. This increases the clarity and engagement for your audience tremendously. Alternatively, if you do decide to have 3 or more presenters, you should have a strong and knowledgeable moderator who can manage the contributions from each presenter.
3. Add video clips
A good webinar platform will allow you to include video clips in different ways, even if you are only running an audio webinar. This could be part of your presentation slides or as a separate asset in a resources/download section. Allowing your audience to engage with video content during an audio webinar will significantly enhance their experience and recall of the content.
You may want to start the webinar with a promo video to set the scene for this specific webinar, or indeed for your organisation in general. Video can also be used to deliver a short demo of a product or solution, or to show highlights from an activity or event related to your presentation. Be mindful that the video has the right context to your presentation. These video clips should not become adverts of your company or attendees will quickly leave your webinar.
Get creative about how you can use video in your audio webinars. Video in B2B is a big new trend and getting it right can set you apart from the competition. If you are unsure about what options you have and how to do it, get in touch with use for some advice.
In part 2 of this two-part blog post about <How to improve your audio webinars LINK> we’ll be looking at three more tips. We’ll answer questions about the role your console design plays in webinars becoming more engaging, and how interactivity and a great presenter can capture the imagination of your audience. Click here to read part 2.
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