Have you attended any webinars lately? If so, how was the overall experience? Did you like attending a live presentation? How many people were on live? Was it any good or did you feel like it was a complete waste of your time?
How did you come to know about the webinar in the first place? Was the host new to you or have you been following them for a while? Did you sign up from a Facebook ad or were you invited to this webinar because you are on their mailing list? Finally, did you buy something during the webinar, or straight after? Was the webinar pure content or mostly pitch? Would you attend another webinar soon?
That’s a lot of questions isn’t it? If you are someone who is thinking of creating your first webinar, you likely fall into any of these groups:
- You have attended live webinars and mostly, you have been blown away by the experience. You love the excitement of being around like-minded people learning from an expert who delivers great value. You come to know, like, and trust the host 10 times better. You want to create a similar experience for your audience and have your online credibility go through the roof.
- You have attended webinars and observed first hand how people sell and generate five figures after a few hours. Or, you have heard webinars are great way to fill your programs or coaching packages and you can’t wait to give it a try.
- You just want to use webinars to attract more people and build your email list. You want to use a live webinar as an opt-in offer and get in front of new audiences.
And these happen to be the three biggest reasons for why you should give webinars a try.
One, they are great for building your list with ideal audience. Secondly, they can be used to create and deepen your relationship with your new or existing audience. Finally, they are a great way to promote and sell your offerings.
So let’s go ahead and learn how to create your first webinar.
Bonus: If you feel you need to revise the webinar essentials, be sure to read ‘How do webinars work?‘, our beginner’s guide that covers everything you should know beforehand.
#1 Know your purpose
So before you begin creating your first webinar, be absolutely clear on what is it that you are trying to achieve. What is your end goal?
Do you want to use a webinar as a lead-generation tool and build your email list? Do you want to do it for purely educational purposes to ‘warm up’ your audience, or do you want to sell something on the webinar?
For your first webinar, I recommend that you focus on creating and delivering a high quality webinar. Work on attracting people and delivering a stellar presentation. Once you have hosted a few live webinars, and you know how the process works, you are ready to sell. And I will write an in-depth post about how to create a webinar that sells so stay tuned for that.
For now, let’s assume that you want to do a ‘practise’ webinar where the goal is to learn to present an excellent webinar and nothing more.
#2 Decide your topic
Choosing the right topic can make or break your webinar before you even show up. Allow me to explain:
For a webinar to be successful, it is important that you get people to register for the webinar, and then have them show up live (after all, it’s no fun speaking to an empty room).
And it will be very hard to get people to register if your topic isn’t compelling enough. So how can you make it super interesting for people? Approach it in the same way as if you were creating a new opt-in offer or a lead magnet.
The first step is to make sure that you know your ideal audience. Who are you wanting to attract? The deeper you go here, the higher the likelihood of them signing up. I always tell my clients to come up with enough detail that they can imagine one person clearly as their ideal audience.
Once you understand your audience really well, you know what their biggest challenge is that you can help solve. Then choose a specific topic that will help them solve a problem today.
So let me make it clear, move away from big picture topics and strategies. Drill down to come up with specific problems that you can help them with. For example, if you are a designer, you can help them use Canva to create professional-looking documents for their business. If you are a nutrition coach, maybe you can help them with a 3-day detox? For a dating coach working with men, they might help them gain confidence instantly in five steps.
Do you see what I mean? The topics are so specific and actionable that your ideal audience can’t help but sign up for the webinar. That’s a great start to any webinar.
#3 Create a high-converting registration page
Okay, so how do you promote your webinar and get people to actually see the registration page so they can sign up? There are two ways to do this. You can do this for free or use paid traffic.
Firstly, you can invite your existing audience. Meaning, you can send a webinar invitation email to your list, and give them the details.
Now, you may not have a decent sized list. In fact, you are hosting this webinar to build one. In that case, you can post the link to your registration page on the various social media platforms. If you are active on Facebook, post it on your business page. If you hang out on twitter, schedule multiple tweets to get people on board. Consider promoting in Facebook groups that allow it.
Sometimes, this may be enough. If you get around 40-50 people to register your webinar, you might be happy with the outcome considering this is your first webinar.
The second method involves investing in ads, and specifically Facebook ads. Now, this method will not suit everyone. Not all people are ready to allocate a chunk of money for advertising. And, if you haven’t run any ads before, you may end up losing all your money.
You don’t want to add the stress to learning to do Facebook ads while trying to learn how to present your first webinar also. However, if you can hire it out, or if you have some experience of running ads already, then this is a great way to build your list quickly while generating sign-ups for your webinar.
Alright, now you know how to send traffic to your registration page. Let’s now take a look at what you can do to create a killer page:
- You need a webinar title that speaks to your ideal audience. This needs to offer a big benefit so people want to attend your event.
- Add some teaser bullets (drill down on the exact benefits in a way that piques their curiosity) so people want to attend.
- Say who you are (the host) and what makes you qualified to teach on this webinar. Add a smiling photo of yourself.
- Add some social proof. Add ‘as-seen-in’ logos and perhaps a testimonial or praise by an influencer.
- Give them the date and time. Let them know if you would be sending out a replay. Give them a clear call to action – register now!
#4 Master the tools
I know technology is a big reason that holds people back from presenting their first webinar. This was true for me, so let me break it down for you. This is how the whole process works:
You need a service that will allow people to sign for a webinar, receive webinar notifications so they know when the webinar is live and what link to click and a tool to access the presentation and possibly participate in a chat with other attendees.
For your first webinar, I don’t want you to invest in any expensive webinar software. I know people who have done close to 100 webinars and still use inexpensive options. You can use Google Hangouts to deliver your webinar for free. However, this option requires that you have some tech experience. You will need to embed the hangout on your website, and link it to a service to collect emails.
While there are many options on the market, I recommend that you check out GetResponse Webinars.
You can easily set up your webinar in a few minutes, create a registration page and share it on social media. As part of GetResponse email service, the new leads are seamlessly added to your list and you can then use autoresponders to warm up those people, send reminders and get them to actually attend your webinar.
As a presenter, you have access to a dashboard where you can manage your actual presentation delivery and share your screen. You can also chat with your participants or poll them, and once your webinar is over, you can look at the analytics to see how it all went down.
They offer a no-risk, 30-day free trial so be sure to try it out for yourself.
#5 Deliver a stellar presentation
I said this before and I am going to say it again: For your first webinar, don’t worry about getting hundreds of people registered for your webinar. Don’t even blink an eye if you get five people live on the webinar. Don’t sell anything or worry about making it profitable just yet.
The only thing at this stage you need to focus on is to go through the webinar without any major technical hiccups and delivering a valuable presentation. Now, I’m not saying, you have to blow people’s minds off right off the gate but make sure you deliver something that is worth their time.
Here are several things to keep in mind:
- Plan your webinar in advance and create your webinar slide deck based on what you will be teaching.
- Don’t fill up your slides with too many words. Structure your webinar content well and aim to spend no more than 30 second to 1 minute on each slide. Do include images or visuals when appropriate.
- Don’t give people too much information or you will overwhelm them.
- Give them what you promised on the registration page. Don’t do a bait and switch.
- Start by introducing the topic and welcoming people to your webinar. Interact with them throughout the presentation. Make sure they can see your slides and hear you.
- Introduce yourself even if you think your attendees know you. Tell them a brief story of who you are, why you are doing this and make it relevant to your audience.
- Tell them the agenda of this meeting. What will you be covering?
- Let them know you will be answering questions in the end but people can type it in as soon as they have one. You can then answer it there and then or wait till the end. The only way to know what works for you is to try it out.
- Deliver the best content you can. Include lots of examples and make it really actionable content.
- Thank people for their time and for showing up live.
- It’s okay to be a little bit nervous. It’s also okay to tell people this is your first live webinar. People will be forgiving once you are upfront with them.
- Rehearse your presentation in advance. This will make a big difference to your live delivery.
- Do a test run to make sure you understand the technical side of things. If you can, ask somebody to sit on the webinar in case things go wrong. Be prepared.
So there you have it.
A bird-eye’s view to planning and creating your first webinar. I think by reading the content above, you will now have a clear idea of what you need to do to present your first live webinar confidently.
Don’t do what most people do. Don’t put unnecessary pressure on yourself and decide that you must get hundreds of people registered for it. You don’t also need to sell either.
That ‘sales’ webinar is a different animal altogether and before you make a pitch, do a few webinars so you are totally confident in your ability to deliver a high-value, hitch-free, webinar. Then plan a webinar where you intend to sell something. I will cover this information in an upcoming blog post so keep an eye out for that.
Good luck on your first webinar and share your experiences in the comments below!