INXPO thoughts and insight on Webcasting, Hybrid Events and Online Learning

3 Tips to Keep Your Webinar Audience Engaged

Posted by Dennis Shiao on Mar 8, 2011 6:08:00 PM

3 Tips to Keep Your Webinar Audience Engaged

Introduction

Do you ever picture your webinar audience members? Make sure  they don't look like the gentleman above. He wants to find some engaging programming, but he can't. Could he be tuning in to a 60 minute webinar? Perhaps.

To keep your audience engaged, cut your slide count by 50% and trim your presentation time by 35%. In their place, make use of interactive tools to engage your audience.

Tip 1: Use Polls

Why do we like polls? First, because it "breaks up" the presentation and allows webinar viewers to participate. Be sure to set the stage (i.e. "why" are you polling the audience) and give them a few minutes to respond.

Then, publish the poll results in real-time, so that viewers can see the polling results. Better yet, have speakers adjust their presentation, based on the results. For instance, ask viewers which topics they'd like you to focus on - and, use the polling results to adjust your session accordingly.

Tip 2: Use Q&A

Be sure your presenters routinely invite viewers to submit questions. Better yet, schedule Q&A segments throughout the webinar, rather than waiting until the very end. If viewers notice their questions being answered quickly, it will increase their satisfaction level.  And, seeing viewers' questions answered will encourage other viewers to submit their own.

Tip 3: Integrate Twitter

Viewers are inclined to tweet about your presentation, whether you like it or not. As such, encourage tweeting by defining (and communicating) a Twitter hash tag for the webinar. Include the hash tag in the footer of each slide and be sure your moderators consider tweets as part of the Q&A "question queue".

Conclusion

Remember, there's a remote control in the hands of your webinar viewers. It's called a mouse and keyboard - or, the "swipe" of a finger. If you keep them engaged, chances are lower that they'll change the channel. Make your webinar "Must See TV".

Topics: best practices, webinars, webcasts, better webinars

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