7 tips for efficient webinars and web conferences

Even before the corona crisis, employees were increasingly working from home or project-related across company and sometimes national borders. If you then want to meet for a conference to discuss the latest progress, challenges or how to proceed, there is often a huge organizational effort. The alternative: web conferences or webinars. A must, especially in times of distance rules and stricter hygiene regulations.

Meetings? Pure waste of time!

“Pure waste of time” – without the crucial minutes of preparation time and with a monotonous moderation without change, a justified statement. Unplanned conferences without fixed goals put participants off even in the run-up to the next online meeting. Projects in which several members work together, however, need a clear exchange of ideas without communication barriers. How else do you want to communicate effectively remotely?

Webinar: virtual instead of face-to-face meetings

Managing directors, project managers and team leaders have recognized the advantages of virtual collaboration for shared file access and the availability of employees working around the world. Ultimately, this saves costs: unproductive business trips that waste too much time and effort – not to mention the stress of traveling colleagues – are a thing of the past. Instead, teams receive quickly made decisions in short reaction times.

EXTRA: 4 mistakes to avoid in a video conference

Web conferences, webinars & webcasts

There are three established ways of virtual exchange: web conferences, webinars and webcasts:

  • Web conferences are virtual online meetings in private or with several participants. The role of those involved can switch between active and passive participation at any time. Beginners in particular can hold a meeting quite intuitively.
  • In the webinar, a moderator presents himself to several, sometimes up to hundreds, of listeners. Participants often have the opportunity to interactively participate in the presentation by means of chat messages, to ask questions or to give feedback.
  • Webcasts enable virtual events to be held with many participants, but mostly without the possibility of interaction. As a rule, professional video transmission techniques are used for webcasts.

The matter of data protection …

In all three cases, the choice of program also plays a major role. Not every program is well suited to hold a webinar about it. Find out about your options well in advance of the online appointment. Among other things, the video conference platform Zoom has established itself in the corona crisis. Unfortunately, the platform doesn’t take privacy seriously. An even more important topic when it comes to confidential data. Regardless of which platform you ultimately choose, it is important that you have dealt with it beforehand and have mastered the basics of the respective program.

Tips for productive and efficient webinars

Tip 1: Prepare instead of being haphazard

Prepare yourself, think about what you want to say and present. Avoid impromptu appointments – a lack of preparation quickly becomes like an unprofessional shot from the hip. But don’t overdo your topic planning – nobody likes to listen to a robot.

Tip 2: take turns in the sapling

Let everyone have their say, actively involve passive participants in the action, speak slowly and clearly – otherwise there is a risk that your participants will switch off quickly. In addition, the common exchange instead of a monologue promotes the flow of ideas.

Tip 3: Eliminate mistake devils

Imagine the facilitator showing a PowerPoint presentation that is full of spelling mistakes. Basically no big deal, but embarrassing, ill-prepared and unprofessional in front of customers.

Tip 4: don’t forget your customers!

A first online meeting is like a first date: You appear as agreed, talk all night and leave without the other person having the chance to say anything. Ask if your participants have any questions – your customers will notice your appreciation. Interact in your presentation in a way that makes a lasting impression.

Tip 5: Ms. Merkel shows how it is done

Our Chancellor Angela Merkel is known for recording her video messages. If the right moment comes with the right topic, your message is immediately available. Why not use this procedure for everyday business as well? Keep your messages short – don’t go over the two-minute mark.

Tip 6: A fresh appearance as a self-confidence booster

It may sound strange, but the more comfortable you feel – well coiffed, smartly dressed – the more self-confidence you exude in appointments or online meetings. With a firm voice and convincing words you lead presentations to the goal more than in a sloppy look. The content of your presentation will speak for itself, a confident demeanor will help convey this to your participants.

Tip 7: The good old days (everything was better before Corona!)

Even if there are sophisticated tools and technologies for efficient online meetings: a personal conversation with colleagues three offices away can sometimes lead to your goal faster than some sophisticated technology. Only use web conferences and webinars when it makes sense.

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