Webinars are an excellent way to engage with your target audience and get your brand noticed. It is for this reason that the number of companies offering webinars is on the rise. After all, who wouldn’t want to get in on the success of this extremely effective marketing tactic?

Unfortunately, many companies fail to do the hard work that is necessary to hold a truly productive webinar. This is a huge mistake since participants who feel that they are wasting their time on a webinar will usually disconnect before it is over. Even if they do sit through until the end, they are sure to walk away with a negative impression of the host company.

If you are considering holding a webinar, here are some tips that will help to ensure its success.

Tip #1: Ditch the Sales Pitch
Nothing will turn off webinar participants faster than feeling like they are sitting through a sales presentation. Remember, webinars are about building relationships, not making sales.

Tip #2: Make it Visually Appealing
Just as you wouldn’t go into a client meeting wearing a sloppy t-shirt, your webinar must look professional, as well. This includes everything down to the background. Has the connection been tested? Have you rehearsed your presentation? No detail is too small!

Tip #3: Don’t be a Bore.
Make sure you engage participants with interesting stories and anecdotes remembering that no one wants to sit through a boring lecture. You also should work hard to interact with your audience so it feels less like you are talking at them and more like you are talking with them.

Tip #4: Get the Timing Right.
Most professionals do not have time to sit through a two-hour webinar. Anything less than an hour is ideal. When scheduling your webinar, make sure you begin advertising it about a month in advance and include language that entices people to sign up right away, for example, “limited number of participants.”

Tip #5: Practice Makes Perfect.
Even the most seasoned webinar professionals would be hard pressed to host a webinar cold. If you are new to the webinar game you must practice. And then practice some more. Consider giving your presentation in front of co-workers and get their feedback. Tape your trial runs and watch to see if you think it sounds professional and engaging. It also is important to remember that you are not giving a speech, make sure your voice has plenty of inflections and that you sound natural. You don’t want it to seem as if you are reading from a script.

Webinars are big business today because they work. However, if you aren’t willing to do the work, you can count on your webinar falling flat.

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