There is a plague impacting webinars for adult learners. And that is that they are incredibly boring. Most of the time I found that these webinars feature a speaker for 45 minutes just reading off slides, followed by 15 minutes of questions and answers. It’s just incredibly boring and leaves a lot of webinar attendees wanting more.
So if you’ve ever felt that way or you’re running an online webinar and you want some tips and tricks to help yours be more engaging, then you’re going to want to read this article. I’m going to go over five tips and tricks that I have personally used to get five-star ratings from my attendees, and also to get them to come back to my next webinar the next time around.
Tip 1 – Ask for audience engagement as people enter the room.
The first tip I’ll give you when it comes to making your webinars more engaging is to ask for audience engagement upon entering the room. The reason why you want to do this is because it gets people talking with one another in a virtual space and makes them more comfortable with the idea of contributing to the conversation in the topic for today.
So, as people are entering your webinar, I want you to put up a slide that essentially says something along the lines of include what your name is, what organization you’re coming in from and then some sort of question related to the topic at hand for today, followed by whether or not that person is willing to serve as an example for today in the webinar.
The reason why you want to do this is because it creates this sort of snowball effect I’ve noticed in which people will see these comments coming up in the chats, and then essentially it feel more willing to share along with other people once they see one or two people starting to share this sort of information with other attendees. It also makes it more engaging because if your webinar is nationwide scope, you can call out all of the different places that people are coming in from.
And that could be another way to boost up the engagement early on in your webinar. You can say things like, “Hey Jim, it’s great to see that you’re coming in from Detroit to join us today”, or “It’s really great to see you, Sally over at ABC Corp in California”. The reason why you want to do this as it, because it draws attention and personalizes the experience a little bit more to your webinar attendee.
Also that question around some sort of thing related to the topic of today is going to become really helpful in my follow on tips to get your attendees more engaged with the content that you’re about to go over.
Tip 2: Give attendees a reason to stay until the end.
The second thing you want to do to greatly improve your webinar retention over time is to give attendees a reason to stay until the end. This can be in the form of some sort of live offer promotion or big announcement you want to make at the end for people who attend. If you ever want to see a great application of this, all you need to do is look up a Mr. Beast video, or look up a Dude Perfect video as to why this sort of content is so engaging.
The reason why is because the creator is able to get you invested early on into the content and wants you to come along with them in that journey to figure out what that factoid or key giveaway or whatever it is that they are promoting is at the end of that video. The same thing applies in your webinar.
If, for example, you want people to sign up for your service, you might want to pair that with the thought of, they should create an account by the end of the day in order to get an extra seven days added to their trial. By having these sorts of live offers at the end or a reason to stay until the end, you really start to build up anticipation and reasons for somebody to actually stick through the entirety of your webinar.
Tip 3: Deliver substance.
My third piece of advice, when it comes to making more effective webinars that really get people to be engaged with you is to actually deliver substance. What I mean by that is to cut out the fluff in which you’re giving some background information and really get into the meat of the content of the topic that you are talking about.
It can be really helpful for you to share personal experiences or experiences that you’ve heard of as you start to illustrate points so that whenever you have some sort of core informational slide, you should pair it with some sort of personal story or testimonial or relatable content that your attendees can actually think about in applying the things that you are sharing with them in terms of the core information.
For example, if you’re talking about how to make a blog post more engaging, you’re going to actually want to share an example of how you turn a really boring blog posts into something super engaging. The easiest way I can simplify this advice is to give actionable advice that your attendees can not easily find or read about somewhere else. You want them to feel like they really got their money’s worth, even if it was a free webinar for showing up today in your webinar because of the depth of the content that you are going over.
Tip 4: Show how to apply the information you shared to your attendees’ lives.
My fourth tip relates to the last tip, which is to show how you actually apply the information you just shared to your attendees lives. The easiest way I can recommend you do this is to use the question that you pose to them in tip number one, to connect the dots and bring in an audience member. In other words, maybe you’re talking about how to make an epic blog post like I mentioned in that prior example. And so you posed a question in tip number one, in which you had them put their name, their organization, as well as you ask them what their most boring blog topic is.
And maybe they told you that their most boring blog topic was explaining how their service works, right? So, from there, what you’d want to do in this tip number four is in the middle point of your webinar, after you’ve gone over the core information about what makes an effective blog post, you’re going to want to bring up one of the people that participated in the chat earlier on and said want to be an example, and he essentially want to bring them onto the stage and have a conversation with you.
Explore with them that case of how they could make their boring blog post idea into something more exciting. And have a back and forth, have them un-muted in the webinar by doing this, you’re going to hook more people into being invested in listening in on what is going on in the webinar, because not only are you going to directly impact that person that you brought into the conversation, but also anybody that’s similar to that person, which is likely going to be a lot of the people attending that workshop are also going to too and, and perk up their ears because another person is speaking aside from just the original speaker, which might be you in that case.
So, by bringing your audience members into conversation after you’ve presented that information, you essentially are giving them an opportunity to apply what they just learned to their own personal experiences. So we first got them interested in the information by sharing our personal experiences. And then we further dug more deeply into that by sharing how that information relates to their personal experiences.
Tip 5: Make your end of webinar call to action simple.
My fifth tip for you when it comes to making your webinars more engaging is to keep your final calls-to-action super, super simple. It needs to be crystal clear that there is only one or two things to do and not 10 things to do as you wrap up your session. And then from here, you’re going to want to tie it back into tip number two. What I mean by that is you want to tie some sort of carrot to the stick in order to motivate people to actually take action on your call to action.
For example, if you want more webinar feedback forms, all you need to do is say that they should submit their webinar feedback form by the end of the day to enter the raffle for X, Y, Z, or if you want to make sure that they sign up for your account, all you need to say is make sure you create your account by end of day to double your trial length or something like that.
Keep things super simple. Keep it understandable as to what they’re getting from taking action today. And if possible include some extra time at the end of your webinar to actually have people take that action while they are still in the room with you. This will also improve your activation rate for whatever it is that you are trying to get your attendees to do.
There are two things that I want you to remember when it comes to looking for signs that it’s time to hire a virtual assistant.
- The first big takeaway is just because traditional schooling taught us what a boring lecture was, it doesn’t mean we have to keep doing it that way. It is way more engaging and exciting when you are able to connect how the problems that the audience members are facing connect to the topic at hand that you are discussing in the session.
- The second big takeaway is to always connect the information and show how to apply that information.
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