Complete Guide for How to Create a Webinar
Learn how to host a webinar for your small business in nine simple steps.
If you want to share information with a large audience, it might be time to host your first webinar!
But let’s back up a minute—what exactly is a webinar?
A webinar is an online seminar (or web seminar, hence its name) that lets you invite audience members to virtually attend your presentation. In short, it’s like an online PowerPoint presentation that you can share with attendees worldwide. You can host lectures, training sessions, events, interviews, workshops, Q&A panels, and various other kinds of presentations using an online platform.
So, what are the benefits of hosting a webinar? Well, for one, it’s an easy, cost-effective way of reaching a large audience, which can help you generate new leads and nurture your current ones. It is also an excellent strategy for boosting brand awareness, promoting your business, and increasing customer engagement.
Now let’s dive into our guide below so you can learn how to create a webinar.
Complete Guide for How to Create a Webinar
Whether you want to host an interview with an expert in your industry or provide a training session for new hires, follow our step-by-step small business lead generation guide on how to build a webinar, and you’ll be all set to host one for your business.
Select a topic
Before starting to create a webinar, you’ll need to brainstorm topics. Consider who your audience is, what you want to convey to them, and the kind of value you bring to the table.
Can you offer advice, educate, or motivate your audience in some way? Are you an expert on a specific topic in your field, or do you know others who can offer professional advice about your industry?
For example, if you own a gym, you might host a webinar focused on the latest health and fitness trends. If you’re a financial advisor, you could host a training course about investment strategies. And if you run an eco-friendly clothing boutique, you might host a workshop about green practices.
Whatever you do, avoid hosting a webinar for the sake of hosting a webinar. Give yourself time to develop a topic that will resonate with your audience.
Choose your format
Now that you have your topic, the next step in figuring out how to build a webinar involves deciding on your format. Start by narrowing down the kind of presentation you want to give. For instance, you might decide to host a panel discussion with various guest speakers or lead a masterclass on your own. Other ideas include interviews, training courses, workshops, Q&A sessions, product demonstrations, and more.
Round up a team
Once you determine your format, you can begin rounding up the key players who will help make your webinar a success, such as those who will help facilitate your event, assist you with the technical aspects, design your presentation, and speak during the webinar. Assign each person a role and be sure they understand their responsibilities.
Decide when to host your webinar
It’s important to select a time that’s most convenient for your audience members to attend, especially if you have attendees in different time zones.
According to a recent case study, the best times to host a webinar are Wednesdays and Thursdays, as people are usually most available and eager to join in the middle of the week. As for timing, it’s recommended to host between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. or 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.— skipping noon as that tends to be lunch hour.
Pick a webinar platform
As you start nailing down the details regarding your webinar, you can select which webinar platform you’ll use to create your webinar from scratch.
Some of the best webinar tools include:
Look through webinar examples on each platform until you find one that best aligns with your vision. Also, explore other factors like ease of use, pricing, and special features.
Design your webinar
Now that you’ve selected a webinar platform, you can begin focusing on actually building your webinar. This means determining the flow of your presentation, creating slides, including images or videos, and writing your script.
When navigating how to host a webinar, it helps to begin with an introduction with some background information and a summary of what you’ll present.
Then, you can dive into your material, whether interviewing a guest, showcasing a new product, or discussing a niche topic.
As for your conclusion, many webinar hosts open up the floor for questions or comments from your attendees. You can have your moderator field questions through the live chat or call on audience members.
And finally, most webinars end with a call to action. For example, you might encourage your audience members to join a class, buy a product, or follow your small business on your social media channels.
Practice and troubleshoot your presentation
Once you’ve followed the above steps, put it all into motion and begin practicing your presentation.
In addition to running through the material and focusing on your timing, you’ll want to troubleshoot any technical issues to ensure your presentation runs smoothly. This is a good time to figure out everything about setting up your webinar, from getting your camera ready to implementing moderation capabilities. Also, consider other factors, like whether you’ll want to mute your audience members, offer a live chat feature, or allow audience members to ask questions.
Promote your webinar
With your webinar finalized, it’s time to get the word out about it. Depending on your platform, you may have the option to invite an unlimited number of guests, which means the more, the merrier!
You can use various strategies to promote your webinar, such as sharing the invite on your social media channels, sending an invitation via SMS texts, and including information about it in your newsletter, blog, and landing page. Just be sure to include all the essential details, such as the time, date, and information regarding where and how attendees can register.
For example, you could send an SMS invitation to your subscribers that says, “(Mac Media) Join our Social Media 101 Webinar starring our special guest, marketing guru Liz Ray, on June 15 at 11 a.m. Click the link to register.”
Once your guests register for your webinar, you’ll need to send them a link that provides them with access to your webinar when you go live.
Follow up and request feedback
The work isn’t over just because you’ve finished hosting your webinar. To encourage customer engagement, follow up with your attendees after the event.
This offers a great way to receive feedback and get a temperature check on how your first webinar went. You could send your attendees a poll or questionnaire to help you gauge their interest and see if there are other topics they’d like to see discussed in future webinars. Moreover, you could even offer a special promo to show your gratitude.
For instance, after your webinar, send an SMS text to your attendees with the following message, “(Fitness Haven) Thank you for attending our webinar today! We’re offering you 20% off your next purchase to show our gratitude. Use promocode WEB20.”
Common Webinar FAQs
The following are some frequently asked questions regarding webinars.
A webinar aims to educate, motivate, or inspire your audience. It allows you to share knowledge with a broad audience virtually.
The best times to host a webinar are between 11 AM and 2 PM, except 12 to 1 PM, usually reserved as a lunch hour. And the best days for hosting one? Wednesdays and Thursdays are the ideal time when most attendees are available.
There are many ways to promote a webinar, such as sharing information on your social media channels, sending invitations via SMS messages, and providing a link to your webinar in your latest newsletter or blog post.
Learn More About SMS Texting
SMS messages offer an easy and convenient way of promoting your webinar. However, SMS messaging is also excellent for communicating more information about your small business, like announcing sales, inviting customers to your loyalty club, overseeing customer service, and requesting feedback. Want to learn more about how to generate leads with mobile marketing? Contact EZ Texting today!