Creating great webinars for our clients is just one of the many fun tasks we get asked to do as virtual executive assistants. It’s something we love doing and we think we’re pretty good at it too.
Thanks to the recent events of this year, we’ve been helping create more webinars than ever plus we’ve been actively involved in facilitating many of these high value, online events. And we thought it timely to share some of our tips and tricks with you here.
Get the Right Gear
Before you start, it’s important to get your set-up right. A smooth, professional-looking and sounding webinar gives you credibility and builds value in your brand.
At the bare minimum, you need:
- A Computer – Don’t use your phone or tablet! This is not the time or place to look like you’re taking a selfie.
- A Webinar Platform – Make sure you use a dedicated webinar platform, no meeting software (like Zoom) that has webinars as an add-on tool. We use and recommend GoToWebinar (https://goto.yourefer.com/)
But if you really want to up your game and get people coming back for more then there are some great extra (but should be essential!) tools you can also use:
- A Microphone – You’re never going to get decent sound quality from the microphone built into your computer, and you can actually buy really decent USB microphones (plug it into your computer and away you go!) starting at around $80 like the ATR2100 from AudioTechnica.
- Microphone Stand – If one isn’t included with the microphone you buy then a stand or boom arm is also worth the est. $15ea to stand or clamp your microphone to your desk for perfect sound quality.
- Webcam – Most high spec computers do have great quality built-in web cameras but if you are using an older computer or laptop then investing in a good quality webcam is worthwhile and might only set you back around $250.
- Lighting – We really want to put this in the top section but it’s not actually essential. If you run your webinar in a white room with lots of lighting (bring in all the lights you can find!) then you may have enough lighting anyway. If not, then a Ring Light is a cool piece of tech – the UBeesize is only around $50, plugs into your computer with a USB and comes with a tripod.
Getting Your Presentation Right
Even though this is an online presentation, you still need it to be engaging so that you don’t lose your audience part way through. This is extra challenging in an online event because people can just turn you off or focus on other work on another screen.
Like with any great presentation, death by PowerPoint is the ultimate sin! Don’t let this happen to you!
Imagine if you were sitting in a presentation room and the speaker was hidden behind a screen at the back of the room so all you had to look at were the slides and hear the sound of their voice over the speaker system. You would be switching off and quietly working on your phone within 10mins I bet.
Now take yourself back to a presentation where the presenter was looking at you, referring to the slides but talking to you too – they were animated, using hand and gestures to help communicate their messages, moved around and generally added their own personality and some life into their presentation. I guarantee you remembered not only the presentation but also much of what was said. It was memorable.
Our quick tips for presenting webinars:
- Keep your slides short with just call-out words to emphasise key messages only
- Include images, videos, graphics, animations to add variety and interest – a picture tells a thousand words!
- Branding, branding and more branding! Make sure your slide template matches your brand – give your graphic designer a call to create a branded template for you.
- Stay on screen! If you disappear then your audience will disappear too. It’s much more difficult to switch off someone’s face then a slideshow.
- Stay engaged! Move your head, turn in your chair, lean forward, sit upright, gesture, use facial expressions… whatever you need to do so you don’t look like a robot.
- Make it personal. Don’t hide your personality when presenting. Have some fun with this and embrace the mistakes and human elements. You’re not a robot!
- Practice, practice practice. The more you do, the better you will get but you can also use the Record function to practice your presentation and even test market it on a friend or client before going live.
As we mentioned at the start of this Blog, webinars are just one of our many skills and services. If you need help with creating a webinar for your customers, then give us a call or email and we can help or facilitate your next online event with you.