Do you have plans for hosting a webinar to promote your business in 2014? If so, I’d like to share some tips on what NOT to do, based on my recent experience as a webinar participant.
Lesson #1 – Don’t be late!
Monday afternoon, I logged into the webinar and waited… and waited… and waited. Finally, about 5-7 minutes in, the webinar started. The presenters apologized for not starting the webinar on time. That was a good thing, because unless you’re experiencing severe technical difficulties, (as they claimed they were), you had better start that webinar ON TIME! That’s a major credibility factor. People don’t have time to waste. They’re not going to be happy with you, if you start late. And if you’re trying to sell something…wow… you’re going to have a very tough time making the sale if you’ve already blown your audience’s trust. On the other hand, people do understand when technical difficulties arise, and they will be sympathetic if you apologize. But do try to work out any kinks beforehand, so you can avoid starting late at all.
Lesson #2 – Don’t assume your audience knows who you are
The webinar I attended, which was actually a Google+ hangout, featured three presenters. The lead presenter introduced himself by name and mentioned the other two gentlemen’s names. But he didn’t go any further. I didn’t know what he did or what the other guys did in relation to the product I purchased. My guess is the presenter assumed I knew who he was already. But since I was a new customer, it would have helped to learn a little more about his background, if for no other reason than to refresh my memory!
Lesson #3 – Don’t stray from the advertised content
After registering for the webinar, I received an email from the webinar presenters stating what topics would be covered during the webinar. During the live webinar, only one of those topics was mentioned at the start. So right away, I was confused about what this webinar was going to be about. And, judging by the comments from the other participants, they were too.
Lesson #4 – Don’t insult your audience
During this webinar, people were commenting about the subject matter, and some of the comments were pretty negative. This obviously pissed off one of the presenters because he decided to call people out about it. He came right out and said, “if you don’t want to learn, just click out because we’re not interested in teaching you.” That comment just set off another firestorm!
What should he have done? Ignore the negative comments! All he had to do was stick to the training. The whole presentation seemed very off-the-cuff and not organized. That’s what was frustrating to the audience. If they had had an outline and stuck to it, there would have been very few negative comments in the first place.
Those are a few lessons on what NOT to do when hosting a webinar. Next time, I’ll share some lessons on how to do a webinar effectively, especially if you want to use it to generate leads or sales for your business.