Webinars have become an effective channel for the promotion of numerous products and services. Yet, even with successful webinars, there are many unexpected events that happen due to mistakes made during preparation. In this article, we’ll look at the most popular webinar mistakes and give the best ways of solving them. Let’s dive right in!
Most Common Webinar Mistakes
Table of contents
Mistake 1. One Week for Promotion
Many companies start the active promotion of a webinar only one week before the event takes place. However, research from ON24 shows that the audience could grow by 36% if the marketing campaign was started earlier than one week before the webinar.
Start promotion 2 or 3 weeks before the actual webinar. A large promotion period will allow you to become more flexible — you will be able to track the efficiency of different promotion tools, get rid of less effective ones, and activate some new channels. In essence, the earlier you get the word out there, the better. In this day and age, people are very busy and have so much going on in their lives. If you start informing them about your webinar early, they are more likely to fit it into their schedule and remember to attend when the event day actually arrives.
Mistake 2. Veiled Advertisement
People often attend webinars to get answers to questions they are worried about and find new ideas. If the speaker starts advertising or selling immediately, it will be very difficult to gain the audience’s trust. Nobody would like to spend time listening to ads.
If potential clients are offered new ways of solving their problems, chances are the speaker will become known to be an expert, which would lead to a more effective presentation of your product or service.
Help people. Don’t be afraid to share precious pieces of advice and working practices. This way you will form the image of a professional and will never fail to draw clients. The best way to build trust is to make your audience see that you’re not only interested in what you can get from them but also what you can give them. This way, they get valuable information, while you get clients who may become loyal, long-term clients if you play your cards right.
Mistake 3. Reading Slides
Never read slides during a presentation. This seems to be the most popular and obvious suggestion for a webinar presenter. Yet, we still find speakers who repeat their presentation content practically on a word-for-word basis from time to time. Usually, this irritates the audience – they could have read the presentation slides themselves instead of attending the webinar.
Also, it gives off the impression that the speaker doesn’t really know what he is talking about. As a subject matter expert, it is expected that the speaker knows most of the information on the slides well enough to expand on what is on the slides, rather than reading verbatim.
Use slides as an additional means for your presentation. They will help you draw the audience’s attention, and accentuate and underline some important information and assertions, but it should never substitute your presentation.
Mistake 4. Bad Sound
Low-quality sound easily turns the effectiveness of any webinar to zero. When visitors cannot hear you well, they would rather just leave the webinar. It can be really frustrating for any attendee to struggle to hear or understand what you are saying.
Moreover, low sound quality can cause attendees to feel an absence of professionalism, which could be transferred to the perception of your company in general.
- Before the webinar, make sure you eliminate all distracting factors that might be heard by your audience — switch off your phone or put it on silent, disconnect Skype and other unnecessary software.
- Be sure to test the platform you intend to hold your webinar at approximately half an hour before the broadcast starts. If you notice problems with sound, try to eliminate them or use another webinar service.
- If you are broadcasting from your office, make sure you have asked your colleagues not to disturb you.
- Holding a webinar in a small room is a good idea, as a large room could cause the effect of an echo.
- Don’t use the built-in microphone on your computer. It is better to try a headset or a special microphone.
Mistake 5. Breaking Time Limits
Almost every webinar attendee has encountered a situation when the speaker was late to start the presentation or just made the webinar last much longer than initially planned. Sure thing, nobody can guarantee unforeseen situations will not happen. However, it is important to keep in mind that such situations influence the general impression you make.
When a webinar goes on for too long, it is easy to lose the interest of your audience. If your main promotion of your company or products comes at the end of the webinar, you may have lost most of your audience by the time you get to the end if it extends beyond the scheduled time. As mentioned earlier, everyone is busy, no doubt most have something else to do after the scheduled time for the webinar. And even if they don’t, people don’t like being held down for too long on one thing.
Respect the time of your listeners. If a 60-minute webinar has been announced, let your presentation last not more than 45 minutes, and the remaining 15 minutes could be allocated to the questions of attendees.
Enter your webinar room 5-10 minutes before the webinar starts. This will be enough to attach all necessary equipment and start your webinar on time.
Mistake 6. Forgetting About the Audience
One of the key peculiarities of webinars is their interactive character. Don’t turn your webinar into a lecture. Communicate with your audience throughout the webinar, not only when the time has come to answer questions. No matter how interesting your webinar topic is, if there is no proper communication with the audience, your audience’s interest will fade.
Webinar services provide numerous instruments for interacting with visitors. As the webinar host or speaker, ask questions, conduct polls, invite visitors to live communication and organize quizzes. The more versatile your methods are, the more active and involved your audience will be.
Mistake 7. Absence of Analytics
Many presenters limit their activity to counting clients they have managed to attract during the webinar. Yet, they forget to analyze the information they obtained during the webinar.
One of the marketing advantages of webinars is that they provide lots of data about users. During the webinar, you can ask visitors for their ages, positions, companies they represent, etc. Moreover, you could gather behavior information about the visitors, e.g., how long they followed the webinar and their questions. You can also integrate Google Analytics into the webinar room, thus obtaining much more useful information.
Weak promotion and veiled advertising are the most popular mistakes if we’re talking about the organization side of the webinar. From the presenter’s side, that’s a bad sound; there’s no respect for the time of listeners or the involvement of the audience.
Be creative. Make your webinar live and interesting, involve the audience in it, and let them speak. Before the start of the webinar, take care of the sound, camera, and place. Don’t forget about your outer appearance. Prepare a script if you need one. Do your best to ensure that the listeners get everything they need and want to come back to you again.
An expert behind the simplified online meeting and webinar software platform, MyOwnConference. In today’s flexible work environment, Dan offers invaluable life hacks, in-depth reviews, and savvy tips for organizing, promoting, and excelling in virtual conferences and webinars.