Guest Blogger: Jean M. DiGiovanna
I get this question a lot from entrepreneurs who are already running workshops and live events and even though they understand the global impact of running webinars, they are just not keen about delivering their expertise “on-line”. Can you relate? I felt exactly the same way about 5 years ago. In fact, I never thought I would even enjoy running webinars. After all, my passion is in delivering experiential learning and seeing the “aha’s” on my attendee’s faces when they experience a shift. How could that possibly be achieved in a webinar? Well, to my surprise, as I translated my material into webinars and helped loads of other solopreneurs do the same, I came to realize that most topics can be delivered on-line and still have a powerful impact. You just have to shift how you design them.
This really hit home when I was at a Chamber of Commerce event and I was networking with a handyman thinking to myself, “This guy would probably never have a use for webinars”. But as we got talking, the ideas started flowing. He could create short webinars for at-home Mom’s on how to fix basic things in the house and use them as a marketing tool to attract new clients. It had me realize that when you challenge yourself, you can really come up with creative ways to reach a larger audience through webinars and on-line training.
Even topics such as Team Building or Public Speaking skills can be covered in a webinar format with creative use of the technology. The impact may not be as great as delivering in person, but it surely is possible. And, yes, there are topics that are not appropriate for webinars – specifically those requiring physical equipment/props and highly physical experiential learning.
Here are some key principles to keep in mind when shifting from live to on-line training:
Webinars are heavier on content so it requires strong visuals/multi-media/interactive polls and questions to keep it highly engaging
A 3hr workshop may translate into a 2-3 part webinar with homework in between the sessions. Instead of live exercises in the moment, you will need to add more powerful examples, demos and visuals so attendees leave equipped to do the “work” afterwards.
A great webinar design requires more creativity and the delivery requires high energy throughout to sustain interest. The great news is, though you can have all your notes in front of you!
If you are new to webinars or have wondered if your topic is even webinar appropriate, I invite you to apply these principles and notice how creative you can be in designing and delivering powerful webinars. Let me know how it goes and feel free to call/email me with questions!
Jean M. DiGiovanna is the Founder of Workshop University.