The thought of hosting your own webinar can be pretty daunting, but it’s really not as bad as it sounds. And it’s a great way to get yourself out there.
Here are a couple tips on getting started:
- Just do it already - The hardest part is getting started. So just go ahead and schedule your first webinar, like now!
- Be prepared - Plan out your content and how you are going to present it.
- Be flexible – Just because you’re prepared doesn’t mean things will happen exactly as you planned. Be ready to adapt.
- Record your webinars - We’ve seen it happen. You have 100 people signed up for your webinar, but only 20 show. Or maybe no one shows. Go ahead with your webinar as planned and record it. This way you can still share your knowledge with your audience at a time that is more convenient for them.
- Recording software – Here at iThemes and WebDesign.com, we use either Camtasia (Mac and PC) or Screenflow (Mac only) to record our webinars. Neither are cheap, but good software rarely is! You may also look into using something like Soundflower which works with both Camtasia and Screenflow to record sound.
- Webinar program – We use GoToWebinar to conduct all of our webinars.
- Chat program – While GoToWebinar has a built in chat system….well, we’re not really fans of it. Instead we use and recommend CBox.
- Create a test recording – Typically at least 30 minutes prior to the start of the webinar, I run our recording software, even if just on a YouTube video, to ensure that both audio and visual are recording as they should. This is a good time to set up and test your audio as well. You can select to use Built-in Input, Soundflower or (if you’re the presenter as well as the recorder) the Built-in Microphone or an external microphone (which will show in the drop down list once you’ve connected it).
- Create a second test recording – This recording is typically done once you are in GoToWebinar as your presenter is doing a verbal countdown to the start of the webinar. During this time, you’ll want to make sure the sound is set up correctly in GoToWebinar as well. The audio setting you use in your recording software should be the same you use in GoToWebinar (though if you’re using Built-in Input in the recording software, it’ll be Built-in Output in GoToWebinar).
- Start your recording early – If you aren’t the presenter, you can’t know for sure that they won’t start a little early or if their clock matches yours exactly. Starting the recording about 5 minutes prior to the start of the webinar alleviates these issues. If you are the presenter, this just gives you one last thing to think about as you start your presentation and may keep you from forgetting it completely.