Contrary to what some people think, webinars are not extremely difficult to pull off. It doesn’t take rocket science to run an event and get the results you need. It does take a bit of work, though. You must be willing to invest the effort to methodically prepare all the necessary details that make up for a productive and fruitful session way before the session begins.
So how do you prepare for a successful webinar? How do you make sure you’ve covered all the bases so your event runs without a single hitch, and you maximize every marketing opportunity?
Some of the first things you need to establish to kick off your pre-webinar prep are the event details:
Time and Date
Make sure that you have ample time to prepare and promote your event. A lot of marketers advise to schedule your event eight weeks from the first day you start your prep. This will give you enough room to develop, test, and polish every detail of your webinar.
Some marketers with extensive webinar experience – and a highly engaged audience – can manage to pull off a session with only a week’s worth of prep, but we wouldn’t advise it, especially for those who are just getting started.
Think of your audience’s pain points and your expertise. Find a happy combo of both, so you’re sure to present an authoritative session.
There are loads of options out there, both expensive and cost-effective. You can even go free with Hangouts or Facebook Live. Whatever webinar software you pick, make sure it has the features you need and the capability to broadcast efficiently.
We recommend WebinarJEO as the software has true live-streaming technology, which means no delays in broadcast. The system also allows users to host unlimited sessions with unlimited seats, has polls, surveys, interactive whiteboard, and all the marketing bells and whistles a host would need to effectively convert attendees.
Arguably the most important part of any marketing strategy, your content should be the focus of your session and therefore should require considerable preparation.
Once you’ve decided on the topic for your webinar, you need to focus on two things for your content prep: your script and your slide deck. This part of the prep should be done about four weeks before your scheduled event.
There’s no such thing as being over prepared, especially with webinars, so a script is not overkill.
You might be tempted to just go with the highlight points and decide to ad lib the rest of the time, but this is not something we recommend. Sure, you’ll sound more spontaneous, but what happens when you forget a minor detail that’s not in your highlights? Dead air kills webinars, too. Better to be too prepared with an excessively detailed script than flounder because you forgot some minor points that turned out to be necessary to your presentation.
THIS is where you only focus on the highlights. While your script should be thorough, your slide deck should only include the main points you’re trying to make. Make your slides engaging and complementary to your presentation, but make sure the presentation itself hinges on what you say. The slides are there to help, not do the work for you.