Webinars are a growing marketing channel in 2020 with the travel restrictions and the safety measures adopted after the COVID-19 outbreak. When you are planning a webinar it’s important to respect the standard etiquette to create the best webinar possible. Be it from the presenters’ side or from the attendees’ side, we need to follow webinar best practices.
The webinar etiquette is pretty similar to video meeting etiquette or even face-to-face meeting etiquette but adapted to the specifics of this digital channel.
An important factor when considering the webinar etiquette is choosing the technology. Make sure to choose a webinar provider which matches your needs. Most platforms offer basic tools such as screen-sharing and a chat function. Make sure to ask your webinar provider to authorise video webinar if you need it. Be mindful that in our experience, video webinars work better with audiences since they are easier to follow and more interactive.
Make it easy for attendees to access your webinar and make sure all people receive the necessary information to attend. The easier the process before the webinar, the better for the attendees. Security is also a very important issue in the wake of the latest data breaches. This is why some shy away from using Zoom. During webinars, sensitive issues can be discussed, and you should make sure that your provider uses secure servers to provide the service. Make sure you use a service provider that has a support team. That can save your event and you can make sure that in case of a technical issue you will have a reliable support.
A general good practice is to respect your participants time. When setting a start and a beginning time, make sure to respect it. Before your meeting, it is better to test the software but also to make sure you are 15 minutes before the beginning. The person presenting should always be the first person to access the webinar on the day of the meeting.
The general rule for a well organised meeting is to have a clear agenda that you can share with participants before the meeting. The agenda is your guide through the meeting and helps you set clear goals and priorities. Try to stick to your agenda to keep the focus on the most important points.
To have a successful online event, we advise you to have the right setup, no matter if presenting from home, from the office or from a dedicated studio.
Start by considering your background which will be important if you are doing a video webinar. The camera on your laptop or the dedicated camera for your webinar usually covers a small area. Make sure your background is uncluttered, even if the rest of the room isn’t. From a lighting perspective, do not sit your back against a window since this obscure your face. Try to focus the active light of the room on your face so it’s easy to read your facial expressions. If you lack natural light in the room, you can turn on the room light and add a lamp to provide soft light from the front. Try to avoid the ghostly effect of harsh downlights.
When using your camera during the webinar, you need to get your angle right. Try to position the camera at the best angle possible to provide a level image of your face. By positioning the webcam like it’s easier to look straight into the camera and have a good eye contact with the audience. Even though it can feel strange to look straight at the webcam, this can set you ahead of most presenters and it will feel as though you are more present.
One of the most important factors of success is to have good audio. Otherwise it will be very difficult for attendees to understand you. Use the adequate equipment for these kings of meetings: headset with built-in microphone, headphone, microphone. These equipments a specially made to reduce background noise. This is important when working from a noisy environment.
During webinars you sometime need to screenshare particular websites, documents or your desktop. Be aware that everybody in the meeting can see your screen. To avoid any confidentiality issues or breach in privacy we advise you to close down irrelevant tabs and turn off notifications so you’re not inadvertently sharing extraneous or even embarrassing details with your attendees.
Before the beginning of the webinar we advise you to get comfortable with the tool or platform you are going to use. 30 minutes before the meeting, is a good timing for doing this. If you are using other devices for your event, we advise you to test before. Try to test all features related to your webinar provider like how to mute and unmute your microphone, where to turn video off and on, how to share your screen and where to open a chat.
A bad Internet connection can ruin your digital experience as well as the experience of all attendees. The professional thing to do is to test your connection before the event and test your setup and ensure your microphone and internet connection are working. Make sure that your data output is at least 25 Mbps if you are doing a live webinar. If you are running other programs that use a lot of bandwidth, we recommend cutting those to improve the webinar experience. If you have a LAN connection in the office or at home, we recommend using that instead of your Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi connections are notoriously unreliable and often explain the drop in broadband quality. Your LAN connection will be more stable.
Try using the most modern browser proposed on the market since this will also have an impact on quality. Google Chrome, Firefox and Safari are usually the most up to date browsers that enables a 720p webinar stream.
During the event, the same rules as in calls apply. This means that when you are not talking, you need to be mute. Any background noise can affect quality and annoys the audience. When listening to the questions of others, you can nod and show that you are listening to the audience.
Create great webinars thanks to our team of experts. If you need any help, please reach out on 1800 733 416. Webinars.com.au is an Australian hosted company that manages around 50 webinars for all type of companies.