A webinar is a web-based seminar. Pretty simple, eh? Picture yourself sitting at your computer, using special online webinar software, which allows your desktop to be viewed by hundreds (if not thousands) of people sitting at their computers (or on their phones) at the same time all over the world learning from you! That’s a webinar; or a seminar on the Web. All you have to do is come up with a topic to teach, create an outline of topics you’ll discover, secure the software and the audience and BAM! You’re doing a webinar!
What’s the difference between webinars, webcasts, video conferencing and web conferencing?
Great question. Here’s what each of those are:
- Webinars … A seminar, workshop, lecture or training event delivered over the Web. Webinars may be a one-way Webcast, or there may be interaction between the audience and the presenters.
- Web Conferencing … A videoconferencing session via the Internet. In order to interact with other participants, attendees use either a Web application or an application downloaded into their client machines. Web conferencing offers advantages over traditional room-based videoconferencing because applications such as collaborative Web browsing, file transfer and application sharing are easily supported over the Internet.
- Webcasts … A webcast is a broadcast of a live (or previously recorded) event over the Web. It is the Internet’s version of traditional radio and TV broadcasting.
- Webisode … A Webisode is a preview or promotion of a particular TV show, music video, or other show presented from a website using streaming video or other techniques.
- Videocast … A videocast (or vidcast) is the video counterpart of a podcast and uses the same RSS syndication method for delivering material to users.
- Video Conferencing … These are face-to-face, online video meetings, which use online video streaming software. Basically, you see those in the meeting and they see you. No need to travel to the meeting. All the participants show up on your monitor.
- Audio Conferencing … Much like tele-conferencing, audio conferencing is basically people getting together on the telephone to listen to you run a tele-seminar, tele-training, tele-clinic, tele-class or tele-conference.
Why should you consider conducting WEBINARS?
There are several reasons why you should start conducting webinars. Here are just a few of the most important ones:
- Visual Learners … Most people are visual learners. Just picture a teacher in front of a classroom of students writing out math formulas on the chalkboard or someone watching a video tutorial on how to perform a certain task. Webinars are in the same “class.”
- Convenient … Webinars can be conducted from anywhere in the world, even from the comforts of your own home or office. Participants can also view your webinar from the comfort of their own home or office as well. Traveling to a hotel conference room or your office is not necessary any more.
- Cost-Effective … Webinars are extremely cost-effective, low-cost methods of training large groups of people at once. No need to spend money renting a large conference room in a hotel or on airline tickets to travel to the learning location.
- Content-Generators … When you record your webinars, you are building an archive of content, which you can then post on your web site for free (to drive more traffic to it) or post for sale through a membership subscription website.
- Credibility-Builders … Who are you? What do you know? How can you help people? Conduct any number of webinars, record them, post them, and let people be the judge. “Wow, you ARE the expert!”
- Global Access …. Any one in the world, anywhere in the world, with an Internet connection, can access your webinar! The world is your classroom and your students are everywhere!
- List-Building … There’s no better way to build your list of prospects (to ultimately sell to), than by giving away free information. Free webinars are no different. Conduct any number of free webinars to multiple groups of people around the world, and watch your list grow by leaps and bounds!
- Profitable … With little to no cost to conduct a webinar, depending on your topic, you could make a sizable profit from each webinar you conduct. Further, once you build up a number of recorded webinars, you could sell access to them via a membership website. Well, if you had 500 people paying you $20 a month to view your recorded webinars, YOU do the math!
Are there other reasons to conduct webinars? Sure there are. But for now, these reasons are good enough for me. How about you?
What kind of webinars can you conduct?
Besides choosing a different topic per webinar to teach, consider conducting the following kind of webinars to grow your list and your bank account.
FREE Webinars (LIST BUILDING & SALES GENERATING) … So, you want to build your list? Conduct as many FREE webinars as possible to as many groups of people as possible. Conducted by yourself or with a second (joint venture) host, FREE webinars can really grow your list fast. People love free stuff. So, why not conduct as many webinars as possible for free attracting a wide range of prospects to sell to. When you have these free leads captive on your webinar, you can also sell them something during and at the end of your webinar! That’s called “upselling!” Remember my motto: give away tips, sell details. Pick a topic you can conduct a webinar on, invite people on it for FREE and upsell them to one of your products, services, seminars, etc.
PAY-PER-VIEW Webinars (MONEY-MAKING) … Maybe you already teach and train offline, and now you’re ready to teach people around the world online via webinars. Perhaps you already charge for folks to attend your offline training. Well, charge them to attend the online version as well. For this, you’ll need a shopping cart and a few other eCommerce tools. But, we’ll get into that later in this tutorial.
How can you make money with webinars?
While I just hinted on how you could make money using webinars, here are a few more good ideas for you to consider as well:
- Sell Attendance … The obvious money-maker is to sell attendance to “attend” your webinar. Depending on the nature of your topic, you could charge anywhere between $1 to $10,000 (on up) for people to attend your online webinar training.
- Sell Products … Never wait ’til the end of your webinar to sell anything. Make an announcement up front that you’ll be offering x-product for sale (at a possible discount for those who act today), and make it known throughout the call how folks on the webinar can take advantage of x-product you’re selling.
- Sell Services … Similar to selling products, sell your services the same way. At the beginning of the webinar, during the webinar and at the end of the webinar, make special announcements about how folks on the webinar can take advantage of what you have to offer. “I’m going to pause before we move to the next segment of today’s webinar, to let you know If you act today, you can purchase my services at x-discount off my normal rates. eMail me by midnight tonight to take advantage of this offer. For those who email me before the call, you’ll get a deeper discount.”
- Sell Advertising … “Today’s webinar is sponsored by …” Done. You just sold an advertisement for some company to get their product/service in front of your webinar participants. Or, maybe you can have a place on your webinar screen, that’s visible to your participants, where you can place a paid advertisement. How much should you charge? That depends on how many participants are viewing your webinar? 10 people? 20 people? 50? 100? 500? What are you teaching? Are the participants in your webinar affluent? Do they have money? Are the cash-poor? Will you be conducting more webinars where you’ll repeat the same advertisement again? These are all factors that go into pricing webinar advertising spots. You can also post ads up top, on the side, and at the bottom of your webinar screen. It’s all up to you. Grow your audience first, then start selling ad spots.
- Affiliate Products & Services … If you don’t have our own products and services to sell, join any number of affiliate programs and promote other people’s products and services.
What kind of software do you need to conduct a webinar?
In no special order, for you to be able to conduct a world-class webinar from your computer, you will need specific webinar software that provides you with the following webinar features, bells ‘n’ whistles:
- No Downloads or Setup … This is important. You don’t want to inconvenience your audience by forcing them to download and install special webinar software. All they should be required to do is open up a browser window, log into your webinar and view it online without having to install any software.
- Record Your Webinar … Be sure the webinar software service provider provides you with the ability to record your webinar. This is a MUST-HAVE FEATURE! You’ll want this feature built into the webinar software you choose. Recordings can then be replayed by those who couldn’t attend your webinar either for free or for a fee! Plus, you’ll use these recordings as content for your website, and ultimately a membership subscription website.
- FREE & Reasonable Pricing … It’s vital the webinar software service provider you choose provides you with the option of free webinar services (so you can experiment with conducting webinars) or low-cost webinar services so you don’t go broke getting started. There are FREE webinar services out there and there are low-cost. Look through my list of recommended webinar service providers to find the service that fits your budget and your webinar needs.
- Full-Service Registration … Many webinar software service providers give you a customized registration system, which includes a branded web page and other tools to help you drive prospects to your webinar sign-up page. These could be useful features, if you need them.
- Automated eMail Templates …Some webinar service companies provide you with eMail templates you can use to help people sign-up to attend your webinar and remind them when it’s going to occur as well.
- Roster … You should be able to find out who is in your webinar conference with you.
- Secure Lockout … You should be able to “lock the door” or use “passcodes” to ensure only those people who register for your webinar can access your online meeting.
- Custom Registration Forms … These are webinar registration forms that the webinar service company allows you to customize to your liking.
- Customized Branding … If the webinar service company allows you to further brand the webinar window which participants log into to view your webinar, this is a cool feature too!
- Social Media Promotion … Some webinar service companies provide you with tools to market your webinar via the many popular social networking web sites.
- Host Sharing Capabilities (Grant Control) … You might like the option to share the ability to host a webinar with someone another instructor or joint venture webinar partner. Perhaps you and another trainer will be giving a webinar on a certain topic and you both need to maintain control of the webinar. That’s fine. Look for this feature when shopping for a webinar services.
- Effortless Control Passing … Some webinar systems allow you (the host) to pass the controls over to a participant (non-host). Imagine say this: “Who would like to take over my mouse and try to replicate what I just showed you?”
- Upload Host Picture & Bio … See that the webinar software you use also allows you to upload a photograph of yourself to be displayed in the webinar window and a little space for a short bio too. Participants like to know who they’re learning from by constantly seeing your photograph in the webinar window.
- Provide Chat Window … Make sure the webinar software you use allows for a chat window. While you should be able to turn this feature on or off, you might want to allow your participants to send you questions while you conduct the webinar.
- Surveys & Polls … Some webinar companies provide you with the ability to survey your participants and conduct polls.
- Telephone Conference Calling Included … This is a great feature that makes conducting webinars super convenient. If the webinar service company can provide you with the webinar service and a tele-seminar like conference line, that’s great! One company — two services.
- Replay Service … What’s also nice about these webinar service companies is that some of them also provide the ability to “playback” your recorded webinar after you’ve conducted the actual event. Just imagine recording it, then providing a link which takes people to a certain web page that plays back your recorded webinar. “If you missed my webinar, click this link to watch it now!”
- Audio Conferencing via Phone & Computer … Some webinar service companies have a feature where your participants can either listen to your webinar via telephone or online via their browser; whichever they prefer. Most folks don’t have a telephone headset in their house. So, when folks can just listen to your webinar via their computer, their hands are free to take notes while they watch, listen and learn.
- Pre-Webinar Practice Sessions … See if the webinar service company you go with provides you with the ability to test-drive your webinar software. It’s nice to have the opportunity to get comfortable using any webinar software first before you actually go live using it in front of a large group of people.
- Talking Head Video … Check to see if the webinar software you choose to use allows you to display a webcam shot of you. As you conduct the webinar, participants can actually see you speaking. Remember to shower that day and brush your hair! I’m kiddin’ … Just look your best. No PJ’s, unless that’s your M.O.
- Collect Info & Follow-up … You should be able to export a list of those who attended your webinar, along with survey results, to know exactly who your audience was and how they felt about your webinar.
- Mac & PC support … People should be able to preview your webinar on either a MAC or PC computer.
What companies provide the type of software you need to to conduct your own webinars? Which ones cost money, and which ones are free?
Below is a short list of companies that provide webinar services. Some offer free webinar services, while others charge a nominal fee. You can also check out my main list of webinar service providers inside my Rolodex, but the list below comprises the top 7 webinar providers I want you to know about:
- Adobe Acrobat Connect … Start web conferencing with one click. Share your screen. See the participants. Use a whiteboard, chat, and share notes. It’s almost like being there.
- ConferencePlusOne.com … ConferencePlus® One gives you unlimited use of Microsoft® Office Live Meeting for one year and includes high quality audio integration. A more reliable and cost effective option than GoToMeeting®, ConferencePlus One is the perfect choice for your SMB.* MORE PARTICIPANTS: 75 vs.15. COSTS LESS: $35.75 per month vs. $39.00 per month. MORE RELIABLE: Standard high quality audio integration!
- DimDim.com … Use your Dimdim meeting room to host an unlimited number of meetings and never pay anything for bandwidth or support. Customize your Dimdim Pro room with your own logo, text, landing page and meeting-end URL. Change your branding at any time. Share docs, whiteboards – even record your sessions – with no software to install!
- Frebinar.com … Make the Best Webinar Service, and Make it Free. That’s the Freebinar mantra. Our goal is to provide a free, world class webinar service that competes with the best paid services available.
- GoToMeeting.com … With GoToWebinar you can conduct do-it-yourself webinars with up to 1,000 people – all for one flat rate. Reduce travel while reaching larger audiences around the world.
- GoToWebinar.com … Get iLinc for Webinars starting at only $99/month. Host events with up to 1,000 attendees.
- iLink.com … With GoToWebinar you can conduct do-it-yourself webinars with up to 1,000 people – all for one flat rate. Offer participants telephone or VoIP option to listen in
- InfiniteConferencing.com … A successful Webinar requires much advance planning and great execution. Whether this is your first online event, or you are a seasoned professional, Infinite Conferencing offers the expertise, services and affordability to ensure a great online event. Click here to view presentation.
- MyWebEvent.com … My WebEvent makes hosting a virtual event simple and interactive. We are the only company that allows you to host, promote and sell, live and recorded WebEvents with the click of a button! Subscribe to My WebEvent today and begin enjoying all of the features below starting at only $24.95/month!
- OmNovia … Deliver engaging presentations to your prospects, employees, partners with room capacity of 2 to 5,000 participants. Our intuitive platform and outstanding customer service will allow you to target large audiences and deliver effective webinars.
- ReadyTalk.com … Subscribe to ReadyTalk Web Conferencing on a per-minute basis with no minimum costs or monthly commitments. Or, buy a web subscription and get unlimited meetings for a predictable flat monthly fee.
- PresenterNet.com … Presenternet is a full-function Web 2.0 application. Save time, save money, tell your story and reach a greater audience – all without leaving your home or office.
- WebcastGroup.com … It has been proven that a high quality webcast leaves the viewer with a positive image of the presenting company. Our fully managed live virtual event webcasts deliver the best viewer experiences to the highest percentage of viewers.
- WebEx.com … It has been proven that a high quality webcast leaves the viewer with a positive image of the presenting company. Our fully managed live virtual event webcasts deliver the best viewer experiences to the highest percentage of viewers.
- Yugma.com … Yugma provides Free, Pro and Enterprise web conferencing solutions to individuals, small businesses, and large enterprises regardless of operating system (Windows, Mac or Linux) or location. Yugma web conferencing is affordable, eco-friendly and easy to use.
- Zoho.com … Host secured web meetings and share desktop online with your remote customers. Share presentations, ideas and collaborate efficiently with your customers, clients, or co-workers online.
How do you promote your webinars?
There are several ways to promote your webinar. Here are my favorite, top ten ways:
- On Your Website … Post your webinar on your own web site! Make it visible from the home page.
- Affiliates’ Website … Post your webinar on your affiliates’ web sites! Ask them to help promote it too.
- Social Networking Sites … Post your webinar on your social media pages like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Plaxo, etc.
- eMail Your Database … Yes, eMail your database of clients, prospects and associates using MyMarketingCart.com.
- eMail Other Databases … eMail the databases which belong to your associates, clients and affiliates.
- eZine Announcements … Announce your tele-seminar inside your eZine, newsletters, reports and articles.
- Person-To-Person … Announce your tele-seminar over the telephone and face-to-face with all your clients.
- Free Publicity … Announce your tele-seminar on the radio, TV or in print whenever you have the opportunity.
- Video-Sharing Sites … If you repeat this webinar weekly, bi-monthly, etc., make a video about it and share it online.
- Postcard Mailing … Send a postcard mailing to other people’s lists of clients, prospects and affiliates.
What steps do you take to conduct the actual webinar?
Here’s the section, you’ve all been waiting for! Here are the exact steps to running your own webinar for list-building purposes, branding purposes, fun and profit! Let’s get started, shall we?
To watch one of my video tutorials, simply click on the link corresponding to the topic you’d like to learn more about:
1.0 — Webinar Overview & Introduction … Ask Campaign Video Tutorials
1.1 How does a Webinar actually work? Let me show you …
2.0 — Get The Tools You Need …
2.1 Decide which Webinar Service Company you will use to conduct your webinars!
2.2 Sign up for MyMarketingCart.com (if you don’t already have an account) for eMail broadcasting, autoresponders, the shopping cart and affiliate tracking. You will use all these tools when conducting webinars.
2.3 Sign up for FreeConferenceCalling.com tele-seminar services if the webinar company you choose doesn’t provide you with tele-conferencing capabilities.
3.0 — Setup & Create The Main Components Of Your Webinar …
3.1 Come up with the Webinar topic you will be teaching people. Come up with a number of topics if you want. Teach one at a time, but come up with a list for future webinars.
3.2 Decide on a Webinar Date and Time when you will conduct the actual webinar. Project about 1-3 weeks out. Always give yourself plenty of time to market it. If it’s a free webinar, you don’t have to give too much notice. One week will do. But, if you’re charging money to access your Webinar, you might give yourself plenty of time to market it!
3.3 Create the Webinar Registration Web Page you’ll use to promote your webinar. If the webinar company you choose doesn’t provide you with these tools, go ahead and add a page to your web site listing details about your webinar. It will be this page you drive traffic to and collect payment for folks to attend your webinar, if applicable.
3.4 Create the Webinar Thank You Web Page folks will be directed to after they register for the Webinar. Again, if the webinar company you choose doesn’t have these (page-creation) tools, go ahead and add a page to your site representing the “thank you for signing up” page.
3.5 Create an Autoresponder for each webinar you wish to conduct. Include the webinar date/time and any access information (i.e., PIN#’s, etc.) attendees need to access your webinar on the date it occurs.
3.6 Create a Custom Field called “Ask Your Question” under the Custom Field section inside MyMarketingCart.com. This is if you want your potential attendees to ask you an “up-front” question about that which you’re going to teach. If you had a list of questions ahead of time, you could craft a better outline for your webinar based on your attendees’ question.
3.7 Create a Custom Form including the custom field you just created to be placed on your webinar registration page that will ask for people’s name, eMail address and the question you want them to ask.
3.8 Copy ‘n’ Paste the Custom Form HTML code into the webinar registration page and customize it …
3.9 Upload (or Publish in WordPress) the Webinar Registration Page on your web site …
3.10 Test the Webinar Registration Form by entering your own information into the form … Does it work?
3.11 Add a Product to the shopping cart if you plan on selling attendance to your webinar. Place the buy me link / button on the webinar registration page …
4.0 — What To Do BEFORE Your Webinar …
4.1 eMail your List and Affiliates an Announcement about your Webinar so they can promote it to their list …
4.2 Export the Questions Compiling in the Autoresponder Series, associated with your Webinar, into an Excel spreadsheet. Perform this task several times during the week, or once a week, on up to your call …
4.3 Sort the Excel Spreadsheet Data by the “question column” to alphabetize the questions as best you can. This helps you read through all the questions you will receive. Start compiling the top 10-20 questions you might use to create your webinar outline.
4.4 Write out the Questions & Answers in Word document or other file, and rehearse the answers …
4.5 Rehearse your webinar by performing a test-run with the webinar software you chose to use. Rehearse as often as you want. Based on the outline you created for your webinar, time your test-performance. How’d you do? Did you run over? Under? Do you need to make any adjustments in your outline?
4.6 Remind people the WEEK OF, 3 DAYS BEFORE, the DAY BEFORE and the DAY OF the Webinar that you are still taking questions and you look forward to everyone being on the webinar …
5.0 — Conduct Your Webinar …
5.1 Arrive EARLY for your own Webinar and make sure everything’s working correctly (i.e., chat window, upload your photo/bio, recording feature, etc.) …
5.2 Setup the Recording Feature before you start your Webinar tele-seminar …
5.3 Conduct the Webinar you worked so hard to put together …
5.4 Upsell products (and/or services) throughout your Webinar to make money …
6.0 — What To Do AFTER Your Webinar …
6.1 VERIFY THE RECORDING TOOK PLACE after the call is over. Does you playback of your webinar play well?
6.2 Post the Webinar on a Web Page so people can watch it. Feel free to use an namesqueeze page (opt-in form) to be able to collect their name/eMail (or payment) before they can watch your webinar …
6.3 Send an eMail to your list that your Webinar is ready to watch if they missed it …
6.4 Add this webinar playback to your own archive of website contenT so folks can watch it …
6.5 Gear up to conduct your NEXT Webinar real soon! I’m sure you’ll get new ideas from this first one …
Now that you know how to conduct your own Webinars, what are you waiting for? Hop to it and start teaching what you know to people all around the world. In return, you’ll build your brand, grow your list and your income.