Webinars have the potential to be an amazing source of content, as well as providing a solid B2B platform for discussing ideas and solving problems.
However, there’s always a downside.
In this case, it’s the issue that so many webinars just aren’t living up to their potential, and are falling through where they could see a major rate of success. Why? Probably for one of these really simple reasons. So, keep reading to discover our subjective list of webinar pet hates - or, alternatively, what not to do in your webinar.
A lack of objective
One problem we’ve noticed in particular is that a lot of webinar hosts aren’t sticking to the point. If you’ve gone to the trouble of setting up a webinar, presumably you have a pretty good reason to do so - so where is your focused content?
Webinars should be straight-forward, without hundreds of tiny tangents diverting from the point. For example, if you’re looking at a problem, you should have a solution to offer. Your webinar should have a clear Call to Action to share with your audience.
Too much of a good thing
Beware, though: while your webinar should be focused with a clear CTA, you need to find the balance between this and becoming too sales-y. Your attendees are there to learn and discuss, not necessarily to buy your product. If your entire webinar is based around you trying to promote yourself, it’ll quickly become obvious; you’ll alienate viewers and probably actually put people off buying your product.
Similarly, don’t make the whole thing about you and your business - there’s no need to go on and on about your experience, your clients etc., especially when most attendees will already know at least a little bit about you. No one likes a big head, seriously.
A lack of preparation
When people attend webinars, it’s a commitment - they’ve taken the time out of their day and the money out of their pockets to learn something and listen to you. Don’t throw it back in their faces with a lack of preparation, a sloppy delivery and a ton of avoidable technical difficulties.
For example, would you turn up to a physical presentation with your notes flying everywhere, no concise objective and little idea of what to say? If you answered yes, then we’re afraid you’re beyond our help. If you answered no, then congratulations! Just make sure you’re applying the same rules to your webinar. Don’t be ‘that guy’.
Ensure you’ve rehearsed what you’ll be saying, thoroughly research your topic and have a clear idea of your CTA beforehand.
We all have them, and sometimes they will be totally unavoidable. We know we’ve been there. But you can certainly lessen the chances of this happening.
Firstly, ensure you’re well acquainted with the platform you’re using. Don’t host a webinar on a brand new server without ever trialling it first (and don’t trust those pesky webcasting services that don’t allow full free demos - always ask #whatareyouhiding?) Check things on your end, too - is your microphone working? Have you got an adequate internet connection?
Secondly, make sure that your webcast provider offers technical support at all times - from real humans, not bots. We’re not trying to toot our own horn here, but our tech support are onhand 24 hours a day and easily contactable. We’ve got our brand name for a reason.
A lack of interactivity
Here’s the thing about webinars: the reason they are such a fantastic medium for lead generation, B2B networking and content creation? It’s because they’re interactive. Digital marketing research has shown that interactive and visual content popularity is on the rise - it’d be foolish not to take advantage of both of these in your webcasting.
When you’re broadcasting live, engage your audience - get them involved and use the chat feature. Answer questions, share ideas - allow an ample amount of Q&A opportunity. Don’t just talk blandly at your attendees for an hour.
After all, what’s the point in a live feature if you’re not going to use it? No one is going to want to attend a webinar when they’ll get the exact same results by tuning in later, and while there’s no harm in having a rewatchable webinar, you do still want to draw in live attendees. Give them a reason to show up.
That goes for visuals, too
Visuals are just as important. You want your attendees to focus on what you’re saying, so give them a reason to listen.
Powerpoint slides, infographics and imagery should be used to enhance your points, and if attendees are drastically trying to speed-read each slide they’re likely to miss out on the real crux of the webinar - which should be your words. It really annoys us when we come out of a webinar having only taken in half of the visuals and half of the audio because there was too much at once.
So there you have it - your conclusive guide on how not to webinar. And now, over to you - what are your own webinar pet hates? Do you agree with us, or do you think we’re a little off the mark? Let us know on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn and keep the conversation going!