What is an Online Webinar and How do They Work?

Posted by Cristina Lucas on Jul 27, 2020 10:25:00 AM

Streaming media solutions have become hugely popular for businesses over the past few years. These virtual events are hosted entirely over the internet, and can help your organization engage and educate its audience.

There are a range of live media streaming opportunities for your business to explore, but perhaps the most common and rewarding is webinars. So what exactly is a webinar, how does it work and what benefits will your organization realize from hosting one? 

What is a webinar?

A webinar, which is a combination of the words ‘web’ and ‘seminar’, in its simplest definition is a seminar that is conducted over the internet. It’s an online event that companies use as a marketing tactic to engage and educate their audience.

Webinars are most oftenly hosted live (although your company can offer a recorded download), and can be used to share knowledge, ideas, educational courses or updates with your company’s audience - no matter where they are in the world.

Webinars put special emphasis on interactivity, allowing your company to engage with its audience through video/presentation sharing, live chat, whiteboards, polls and surveys, Q&As, desktop sharing and much more. 

The different types of webinars

The success of a webinar is in large part down to the style of webinar you choose to host and the type of content you choose to use. Not all content will engage and educate your audience. In fact, some content may deter potential customers from your company if it doesn’t interest them.

When choosing to host a webinar, you need to make sure you base it around content that offers value to your audience. You want them to gain something from attending your webinar, whether it’s teaching them something new or helping them to solve a particular problem that they have.

By delivering information your attendees will benefit from, your webinar will become a fantastic lead generation tool for your business. This will result in new revenue streams and growth opportunities.

A successful webinar could be:

  • A panel discussion of a recent news story impacting your industry. 
  • An educational seminar on a topic in your industry. 
  • A thought-leadership webinar that helps you become an authority within your sector.
  • A presentation or demo on your product/services or a product update. 
  • A ’how-to’ tutorial in a subject that your business wants to build leadership in.
  • A Q&A with a prominent figure within your industry, one who your audience would love to hear be interviewed.  
  • Employee training events and corporate communications. 

There’s so many ways you can use webinars to engage and educate your audience, but how will your company benefit?

What are the marketing benefits of a webinar?

Webinars are a great form of marketing for your business, helping you to build strong relationships with your audience as well as strengthen your company’s authority on a particular topic that you want to be known for.

This is made easier by the “few-to-many” distribution model of the webinar. By using just a few hosts or keynote speakers, businesses can run an entire event that engages hundreds, or thousands, of attendees who are based anywhere in the world. 

Here are just a couple of the many ways a webinar will help your business improve marketing engagement with its audience:

Lead generation: Webinars that offer value to your audience will attract potential customers who are interested in your products/services. Once you’ve attracted those people to your webinar, you will be able to turn leads into prospects who are more likely to buy from your organization. Webinar platforms will record your attendees names and emails, meaning they become a part of your prospect list. 

Grow your content library to become an authority on your subject: Content is king. You’ve heard about the importance of SEO, blogs and website content, but maybe you haven’t started exploring the benefits of video just yet. Creating video content through webinars will improve your content generation efforts and help search engines to see you as an authority on a subject. 

Webinars are not just for external use either. You can use them internally if you have a remote team to host team meetings, offer employee training modules or to hear from a guest lecturer on a subject that may help employee performance. 

Are you interested in learning more about webinars and how they can help your organization grow? Contact Genesis Integration today. We have years’ of experience implementing successful webinars and other media streaming solutions for clients across Canada. 

Stay tuned for our upcoming blog, where we will discuss how you can improve audience engagement during your webinars.

Tags: Videoconferencing solutions


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