Preparing the First Webinar. Short Guide

schedule webinar

Today, we would like to talk about preparing a webinar if you have not done that before and need to sort it out the soonest. We have asked Katia from MyOwnConference Client Support to tell us about the main steps to be done while preparing a webinar.

Superfast way

Sure, it is the idea everything starts with, but we are not going to talk about choosing the topic or how to prepare the materials. Let us assume this step has been made and now you need to start the meeting immediately. So, you are lacking time for anything…

Log into your dashboard and press the Host a Webinar Now button. To tell you the truth, some of our clients do not need to adjust any webinar room settings. Often, it is enough to simply copy the link to the webinar and send it to the attendees. After this, one can tell the time when the meeting is planned to be held and wait for the webinar to start. Small hints from the system and appearance of the buttons will help to master the service quicker.

This way is good for only some case though. Most people will still need more time for setting up and planning everything.

My 5 steps while preparing to a webinar

I do not like any hustle and prefer to be ready for anything. Now I am going to tell how I would prepare my first webinar. Later on about half of the steps may appear unnecessary though.

Step 1. Webinar with no attendees

Set up a webinar (you can read about doing with MyOwnConference below) and try to hold it with no attendees. Be sure to record it. Read more on how not to let attendees leave your webinar before it ends and use these methods even during the test webinar. Watch the recording of your webinar and fix your mistakes. I think working with a webinar recording is one of the most effective ways to become the best speaker.

Step 2. How much does a webinar cost?

Consider how much you are ready to spend on your webinar. Well, it may sound a bit strange, right? Many people might think webinars are free tools, but the truth is that if you want to earn using webinars you will have to spend some money on this or devote more of your time to the thing. In addition to the service price, there are expenditures for advertising, equipment, guest speakers, but the main thing is your own time.

Now, let us get to the benefits. Sure thing, free webinars can also generate income. But in case you plan to hold paid ones, think of how much that is should cost and how you are going to accept payments.

Step 3-4. Emailing and webinar promotion

Prepare templates of emails to your attendees. Test your emailing system. Check how email campaigns can become a part of your marketing strategy.

Write down the plan for your event promotion and start inviting attendees. More on how to do that using Facebook is available here.

Step 5. Final walkthrough

Take another look at your webinar plan, presentation, equipment and make a test run with several volunteers (friends, colleagues, or a person living next door to you). It would be great if they make all steps:

● registration,
● confirmation email,
● invitations and reminders,
● login to webinar room.

You do not have to host your complete webinar for them. Their task during the test run is to check what everything looks like from the point of view of an attendee to check for any possible issues.

Try all modes you are going to use during your webinar: tests, screen sharing, drawing, invitation to speak, video demonstration.
Of course, you can and should test this yourself by logging to the webinar as an attendee, but the point of view of a non-engaged person will be of special value if you would like everything to be held at the top level.

Write down all comments, questions and inconveniences and work on them. Do not forget that you can still get in touch with the tech support service, as we are there to assist you.

Let nothing be a surprise for you. At your webinar service, be sure to read the user guide and paste a link to it into your webinar reminder emails. During the webinar, if anyone reports an issue, you can post this link to the person once again. Often, it is enough to simply clear the web browser cache and refresh the page, but I believe you will prefer not to write about this in the chat after having started the meeting.

See a sample pre-webinar checklist for the attendees here.

Now, make your webinar with MyOwnConference

The first thing to do is creating a free account. Log in to your dashboard to plan your webinar. You can register right now and check how simple everything is.

Now, let us assume you plan to host a free webinar, no matter be it a meeting for 20 attendees or 1,000 of them.

Check your schedule and plan your next webinar in the Webinars Schedule section.

Webinars Schedule

After pressing one of these buttons, the window of your future webinar’s settings will open.

webinar’s settings

Check every tab one by one and notice the options important for you.

At the moment, I am not going to describe all functions available, as they are described in details in our User Guide. Instead, I would advise doing something important. In the Custom View tab, enter Close Page URL. It is the page your guests will be forwarded to when exiting your webinar. This can be either your website, order page or registration page for another event.

In the Global Settings tab, check the option Ask the attendees to enter their email addresses. Believe me, this step will be very useful when you start working with your subscribers database.

subscribers database

Creating links for inviting attendees

To invite attendees to the webinar, you can send them a link to it or publish this link somewhere, like in social networks. More details on how to invite attendees to webinars – general and personalized links, landings, registration forms, subscribers databases, sending emails and reminders – are available in our Invitation of Participants guide.

Getting this link is possible in the webinar room and in the dashboard. Press the Copy Link button.

copy link

Further, it is enough to press CTRL+V (or CMD+V for Mac users) to insert the link into the invitation.

Adding files to your webinar

I always advise uploading all files before the webinar. Even with the fastest Internet connection, it still takes certain amount of time. Do not forget about adding links to YouTube videos, too. Your presentation will look better if you have at your fingertips everything you need, and thus you are sure to avoid making your guests wait and some excuse phrases of yours like “Just a second, I seemed to have it somewhere here”.

webinar recording

Use surveys. We always have questions to attendees, and collecting their answers using surveys is a better idea than doing the same in the text chat, especially taking into account that many presenters prefer to disable the text chat functionality during their webinars not to get distracted by anything.

Although it takes only several seconds to create a poll in your webinar room, be sure to create it beforehand. You can ask whatever questions you need answering, starting with technical ones and ending with collecting reviews and voting. It is much more convenient than counting minuses and pluses in the text chat. What is even more important is that every attendee will answer your question.

poll

– Do you see and hear me well?
– Do you know anything about …?
– Do you like our webinar today?

In my opinion, these are the most important steps when preparing for the webinar. Sure, it is possible to launch your event after these steps done, but if you still have some time, read about other important things and details before the webinar. From this article you will learn how to take care of everything and look professional. This checklist will help you to avoid irritating surprises during your presentation and enchant your attendees.

Wishing you good luck and successful webinars!

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