Web conferencing is a form of communication whereby individuals from different locations can talk and/or see each other while having their boxer shorts on. There is usually a text message option, especially if the medium is a CPU device. The same is made possible by internet connectivity, particularly TCP/IP connections. Web conferencing has now become an irreplaceable tool in the exchange of ideas, especially in the Philippines.
Webinars or web seminars work on the same principle but with a specific purpose; one person or a group of person’s imparting knowledge to others. The added bonus, well you can conduct or be part of a webinar on your boxers and/or shorts. Provided you wear a decent top and the video capture device only focuses on the upper part of your physique. The same is usually live but some webinars are recorded for posterity and then included in product and/or service pack. But please, don’t wear pajamas. =D
The most basic webinar platform requires devices like a webcam, microphone, headset/speakers, etc. Each tuned into the channel of the sender. Some, web conferencing services require specialized hardware and/or software. The heavy hitters when it comes to web conferencing are:
- Verizon Small Business Web Conferencing
- Microsoft Office Live Meeting
- Adobe Acrobat Connect Pro
- Cisco WebEx
Think Outside the Box – Some benefits of doing webinars for your brand
Everybody knows the basic use and premise of webinars. This article will go beyond the obvious. The discussion will focus on effective utilization and the benefits of the same.
- Touch Base
SME’s with different branches or those who outsource would do well to conduct regular webinars. This is notwithstanding the regular stream of emails and instant messaging. Tip: Webinars are not only supposed to impart knowledge, it is also supposed to breed familiarity and trust! There is just something about talking to a person, seeing his/her face, and interacting with the same face to face, or more accurately “monitor to monitor”. Simply put, it adds a personal touch!
- Work Smart Not Hard!
If you are doing everything right with your small business enterprise, then chances are you have a very tight schedule. There is no room for you to repeat something you have already said. There is no time for you to wait for individuals who have a different schedule. By conducting a webinar you can impart your knowledge wherever you audience maybe. You do not have to repeat your lecture again and again, because you can just record the same.
- Add to Your Income Stream
If you are a gifted speaker, then record your seminars and training courses. You can then sell the same as a separate product and/or service. Just makes sure to get full permission or make final edits. The last thing you want is to impart trade secrets and internal procedures. Simply put, web based education is another way to earn income as a subject matter expert and to advertise your brand!
- Better Yourself
Webinars are done by proxy, with the monitor serving as the proxy. As such, it is harder for you to hold the attention of your audience. Particularly if the same is at home and preoccupied with other matters. This makes it imperative that you become a better speaker. You need to capture the attention of your audience even without being physically there.
- Improve Website Ranking
Webinars recorded on your main website, landing page or sales pages allows you to relate to another type of audience i.e. the type that are too lazy to read! This adds another dimension to your online platform. Tip: You tailor your appearance, words, cadence, and mood to suit your target audience and to appeal to the major personality types.
For example: You are selling herbal supplements. You would do well to break away from the stereotypical sales person persona and sales person spiel. You want to sound genuine both in your knowledge and your intention to help. You want to appeal to your audience’s impulse, emotions, reason, good sense, etc.
- Create a Following
For best results you should release webinars on a regular basis. This is especially easy if you already release regular newsletters. All you have to do is convert the same in presentation form. Be interactive. Allow Filipino netizens to log on and hear you live. Entertain questions, but only on specific breaks in your lecture and also after you have finished.
You can even add a comment section within your website, forums, blog sites, YouTube channel, etc. Then post a few older one’s or a summary/teaser on YouTube and other video streaming sites. You then link the same to your website, add it as a video response, encourage comments and video response from followers, etc. What results is a steady stream of followers and a veritable web in various social networking platforms.
- Branding and Goodwill
KFC has the Colonel, Brut has the naked dude, Apple/Mac had Steve Jobs, Trump has the hair. All these companies have well known brands BUT they still needed a brand ambassador. The same goes for SME’s.
This is where you step in. Your webinars will increase your visibility as your brand’s spokesperson. Tip: Nowadays, quirky sells! So add a bit of chutzpah to your webinar persona and own it! It does not have to be something exotic. But it needs to be you and it needs to be original.
Mobile Devices and Webinars
We are slowly moving away from desktop devices to hand held one’s. These devices have different platforms, different operating systems, different sized LCD’s. As much as possible make sure that netizens can access you using the major operating systems, with the barest of software, and hardware requirements.
Video and Voice Bandwidth
Webinars are done live. Most of the time you can estimate your audience; particularly if the webinar is only accessible to members and subscribers. But still there is a very real threat of flooding and crashing your system. That is why you need to have flood control protocols in place. Also, you might seriously consider separating the bandwidth of your audio/video stream with the main website. This way, website traffic will not affect or be affected by the burden generated by the video.
Paul’s Last Words:
First, your webinars must have a specific purpose. Second, the same needs clear audio and impeccable video. Third, bandwidth utilization must be reasonable. The last thing you want is excessive buffering and crashes. Last, and arguably the most important, at the end of the day, the audience is looking for quality content that is valuable, relevant, unique, and emphatically delivered. Tip: practice makes perfect. Before styling yourself as a webinar guru, why don’t you post a few video streams on the worldwide web.