How to organize a webinar?

Recently, webinars have become quite popular. There are several reasons for this:

  • it is possible to convey information to several people at the same time;
  • the ability to communicate with listeners, ask them questions, answer their questions;
  • you can show both yourself and your computer screen, presentation, and so on;
  • the webinar is another marketing channel, with its help you will be able to gain additional trust from consumers;
  • in the regions, a webinar is a detuning from competitors, a demonstration that your company is keeping up with the times.

Webinars are used by training centers, consultants, various business areas, and everyone who wants to. After all, this is one of the simplest modern ways to convey information to certain people. A big advantage of webinars is almost personal contact with the audience. If we consider webinars organized by firms to increase the number of orders, then this is an analogue of any advertising channel.

Preparing for the webinar

First of all, to conduct a webinar, you need to decide on the topic that you will convey to people. It is not worth conducting webinars, which consist entirely of advertising your services and products. Give people useful and interesting information that is related to your business. For example, the topics of the webinars of the transport company Dispatch 33: transport logistics, how to choose the right truck, your own fleet or hired transport.

Naturally, the person who will be in the frame should prepare properly. Ideally, he should be an experienced specialist in this topic. It is necessary to make an approximate plan for the theses and the time of the report. It is not necessary to make the most detailed plan of the webinar, which you will read from a sheet. You can peek, but not read. If you use a presentation, then this problem is solved automatically. But the presentation should be made out, spending extra time and effort. If you have experience in creating presentations and enough time, it is better to make a presentation.

The longer the webinar is, the less chance there is that many viewers will watch it. It is also not worth doing a webinar for 5 minutes without revealing the topic of the report at all. In my opinion, the optimal duration of the webinar is from 20 to 60 minutes.

Platform selection

There are many specialized services for conducting webinars. Of course, they are convenient and functional, but such services have one big disadvantage - they are paid. Moreover, most require a monthly payment. There are various tariff plans. For example, on webinar.ru conducting webinars with a limited number of viewers (up to 150 people) it costs 10 thousand rubles a month. For small businesses, individuals, regional companies - this is a large amount. We are interested in free webinars without restrictions.

An alternative to specialized services is the Google Hangouts service. You can use it by this link. The only thing you will need is a Google account. If you are already registered on Youtube, Gmail or Google Plus, then everything is ready for the start of the live broadcast. Yes, it will be a live broadcast, not a webinar. Feedback will have to be carried out separately, but more on that later.

Start of the webinar via Google Hangouts

To create a webinar, click on the "Start a live video meeting" button.

Webinar via Google Hangouts

Then enter the name and description of the webinar, the start date and time. In the "For whom" field, select the "For everyone" option.

Google Hangouts settings

The main interface of the webinar will open in a new window. I will list the basic functions that we will need. In the upper left corner, a white arrow on a green screen is an opportunity to show your screen to all viewers of the webinar. If you are using a presentation, then this is the feature you will need.

On the top panel, you can turn off the sound and image. For example, if several people participate in a webinar, it is undesirable to show the audience how you get up from your chair and leave. Announce a 3-minute break, then turn on the sound and image.

In the lower right corner there is a button "Show links", with which we can embed a window with a webinar on any site. You need the code from the "Add Video" field.

Google Hangouts settings

It looks something like this:

"iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Q1k_GEhHWOE " frameborder="0" allowfullscreen".

The numbers in width and height are responsible for the width and height of the video window. The universal version of the window is width="640" height="360".

This code must be inserted on the page of the website where the webinar will take place. The easiest option is to embed the webinar on the main page of the site. This can be done using the site admin panel, or by editing the page code manually. If you do not understand the basics of HTML, it is better to entrust this task to a knowledgeable person. After adding the code to the page, viewers will see the countdown to the start of the webinar.

Feedback

Now we have a countdown window that will end as soon as we click the "Start broadcast" button. But we are not ready yet. We need to make feedback with the audience. First, the simplest options are to make announcements that questions are accepted by e-mail, SMS, feedback form on the website, through an online consultant. All these are acceptable options, but a full-fledged chat would be ideal.

If your site is made on popular platforms, for example, wordpress, joomla, modx, 1c-bitrix, then a chat is already ready for it. You just need to choose it from a variety of options and install it on an add-on or plugin. Feel free to drive a request like "Chat for wordpress" into yandex and choose the plugin you like. There are also universal chats for websites. For example, www.chatovod.ru.

It is most convenient to conduct a webinar together. One person moderates the chat, accepts questions and passes them to the host (the person in the frame). You can transfer them both electronically and on paper.

After installing the chat, you can start the webinar. It is convenient to keep a copy of the webinar page and the main main page of the site. You can quickly switch between them without spending a lot of time changing the code. The only thing that needs to be changed is a line of code from Google Hangouts.

The advantage of Hangouts is that the video from the webinar is automatically saved on your Youtube channel as soon as you click the "End broadcast" button. It will be possible to immediately share the webinar with those who did not have the opportunity to watch the webinar live.

Techniques for conducting a webinar

The easiest way is to conduct a webinar on a laptop. All laptops have a built-in webcam and microphone. But if you want to get a high-quality picture, it is advisable to use a separate webcam. Moreover, there are not so many good webcams. I recommend Logitech HD Pro Webcam C920. It costs around 4 thousand rubles. You will get a high-quality picture and acceptable sound. For a better sound quality, use a buttonhole microphone. An example of an available microphone is the Genius MIC-01C (500 rubles). A higher-quality microphone-a Rode smartLav buttonhole will cost around 2000 rubles.

Google Hangouts settings

But not only the technique is important, but also the lighting. If it is possible to conduct a webinar next to the window, then this is the best option. Natural light will give a nice picture. In order not to interfere with artificial lighting, it is better to turn off the lighting in the office and reduce the brightness of the monitor. If there is no possibility to broadcast live with natural light, then you will have to look for a well-lit corner in the office. Of course, you can buy a video light. But spending about 4-5 thousand rubles more + buying batteries and a charger is expensive for him.

Don't forget to turn off your cell and office phone. I also recommend closing the door with a lock, hanging an ad on it that you do not need to enter this office during the webinar. If your Internet speed is limited, then do not forget to warn your colleagues that you do not need to use the Internet very actively at a particular time. Moreover, it is not necessary to watch the webinar live. Any slowdowns or problems with the image or sound will negatively affect the perception of the webinar. That is why it is necessary to prepare everything in advance and minimize the risks. Have a good webinars!

ps. A webinar is a video format. But no one forbids you to translate this video into text with illustrations. This will be a large and unique material on the site, which will be in good demand by search engines. Take shorthand!

Author: Aleksandr Dergunov
Published: 11/30/2014