How webinar works

Who I am
Aina Martin
@ainamartin

What is a webinar

Before going into the tutorial on how a webinar works, I want to give you some more information about what is a webinar. Well, know that a "webinar" refers to a online seminar where participants can interact remotely, via the Internet, from devices such as computers, smartphones or tablets. In fact, the English word webinar derives from the union of the terms Web and Seminar.


A webinar is Interactive: if you are the organizer, you will have the role of coordinator, or teacher, depending on the informative or educational proposal of the intervention, which will take place in front of a connected audience. The latter will be able to ask questions and make observations, also creating a reciprocal exchange.


Prerequisites for a webinar are to have one working internet connection and have downloaded a software, or connected to aweb application, able to connect all the participants at a distance. In the next few lines you will get to know some of these platforms, which I will describe to you.

I can tell you that, typically, you will have to send a link by e-mail, instant messaging or other means to people interested in taking part in the webinar you intend to schedule; or rather, once the event has been made official, the link will be sent automatically by the chosen service. Alternatively, users can decide whether to activate a reminder and be reached by a notification (this works especially for live streams on social channels).

There are tools for organizing webinars free and paid: you yourself can decide whether to hold the online seminar with free participation, or request registration through a sort of ticket that will have a certain price.



It is clear, therefore, that a webinar can also be considered a marketing tool, able to make its business known to an audience potentially interested in the services offered. So, you might as well start thinking how to make money with a webinar.

General Information

Now that you're getting into the order of ideas regarding how a webinar works, I also need to give you some General information on the instrumentation that could be useful to make it feasible and functional for connected users. With a little effort, you will certainly be able to produce a quality webinar, with which you will make a great impression on your audience.

Necessary

Are you ready for your webinar but don't know how to put it into practice? Don't panic, start with this material list necessary, which you will have to prepare for the success of the online conference.

I think I can assume that you have a computer and a connection to the Internet: in case, I suggest you read my guide on how to speed up Internet connection, to optimize its performance, then produce a smooth webinar, without annoying interruptions. and / or interference, annoying for the listener.

What you will need for sure, however, is one webcam: you can take advantage of the integrated one on your PC monitor, however I strongly recommend that you buy one such high resolution, of the external type, however easy to coordinate with the device. In this regard, you can read my guide on how to connect a webcam to the PC.


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If you have one latest generation camera at home, know that it could be an excellent idea to use it to broadcast your webinars: today many manufacturers of digital cameras have made utilities available to users to use them also in this sense. Read my guide on how to use a camera as a webcam and, if you want, take a look at the best models for sale online, because if webinars become an important and ongoing activity for you, it could prove to be a good investment.


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How do you say? The smartphone could it be suitable for resuming a webinar? Of course, especially if equipped with a quality video sector: in this regard, I have created a buying guide for you dedicated to the best camera phones.

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Another fundamental element is the microphone: Crystal clear and clear audio is very important during a webinar, to allow the connected audience to hear and understand everything. You can choose a condenser microphone, to keep on your desk, if the exposition of your concepts remains static enough and the shot is constantly half-length, or opt for a wireless microphone to pin to clothes, while you move freely, having to illustrate contents for which you must also stand up and appear full-length. You can easily find microphones of all kinds on various online marketplaces at affordable prices.


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The same concept of half-length or full-length shooting applies to photographic lights, always useful to get a better image on the screen and immediately acquire a more professional tone. If the exposure during the webinar doesn't expect you to move much beyond your seat, choose some small LED spotlights, or of ring light, that is, annular lamps, always with LED technology, particularly suitable for illuminating the face uniformly.

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Should you need to set up some sort of set, to isolate yourself from your surroundings (remember: it is always better to appear on video within a neutral context using, for example, a solid color backdrop, or by going to a corner with white walls), always on the Web you will find ready-made kits, containing lights, diffusers to modulate the lighting and monochromatic and green screen backgrounds.


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Basically this is all you need to ensure optimal transmission, you can also equip yourself with other accessories to refine your technique, but I think you will understand what else can be useful to you with time and experience in the field.

How to do a webinar

In addition to the appropriate and necessary equipment, if you want to learn how to do a webinar, you must know that you will need a Web platform, where you will connect, together with the participants in the seminar: in short, it will be like a "virtual meeting room".

How to choose the best platform for your needs? First of all, a distinction must be made: there are services that can be used online, by simply connecting to their site (usually they are also free, in their basic versions). Among them must be mentioned Google Meet, Microsoft Teams and even the functions dedicated to live streaming integrated in major social networks, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitch YouTube. Using these tools allows you to give free access to people interested in your content, by invitation or freely and they prove to be excellent especially from a promotional point of view.

There are, then, platforms that provide for the download of a client for PC, smartphone and / or tablet. These tools typically have access and gods free plans with some limitations, flanked by membership plans paid that allow you to connect many people to the webinar, without time barriers or whatever. Such software are Skype or Zoom e GoToWebinar. Services of this kind respond to professional needs, which can see hundreds of people involved, including a paying public.

In principle, you can decide whether to connect live, perhaps the best choice for an interactive online seminar, or to record the intervention: in both cases, a program such as OBS, a completely free and open source computer software that allows both to record and to perform live on various platforms, with the possibility of recovering, capturing the computer screen, the microphone and much more.

How Zoom webinar works

If you think you really need an easy-to-use platform and that, above all, includes at least one free plan for video conferencing, you definitely need to learn. how Zoom works.

Zoom allows its users to connect for video calls between multiple people, hold remote interviews, attend lectures, courses, talks and, of course, hold and participate in webinars. To use Zoom, you can go to the official website of the service, scroll the home page to the bottom and select the in your languagen language, then stay connected via your browser (only if you are a participant in a video conference), or download the application client.

In addition, you will also find the app for smartphones and tablets available: for devices Android it can be downloaded from the Google Play Store (or from an alternative store, if you don't have the services Google on the device), while for iPhone e iPad you can download it from the App Store.

Il free plan Zoom provides a duration of 40 minutes per connection, for a maximum of 100 participants. You can then purchase the plan Zoom Pro at the cost of € 13,99 per month, as well as choosing an even more targeted option. In your case, for example, just that Webinar video Zoom, for professional online seminars: how does it work? You will have to establish a maximum number of participants in your webinars, in a range of proposals that goes from 100 people up to 10.000 people, with an expense that starts from 37 € / month / license for 100 people. More info here.

If you still have any doubts about activating Zoom, read my guide on how to download Zoom, then after that, also read the tutorial on how to register on Zoom, as that will be the next step.

Once you have obtained the Zoom client, or the app, in your profile you can decide to schedule your webinar or start one live, inviting users to participate via a login link which will reach them via email. To find out how, read my guide on how to create a link on Zoom.

The integrated service Zoom video webinars, among other things, allows you to create a landing page with the registration of the seminar, to promote the activity, of chat with participants during the live broadcast, to collect their data (with prior consent) to send information emails (CRM) And test the satisfaction intervention. More info here.

Remember to prepare the shot in the best possible way, before starting the conference, as well as to do some audio and video tests, using the accessories I mentioned in the paragraph on what you need to create a webinar.

For more details on using this platform, particularly recommended if you have a small or medium-sized audience, read my guides on how the Zoom app works and how to update Zoom, to allow the service to always work in the best way.

How GoToWebinar webinar works

Although Zoom also has features to allow you to monetize with your webinars, perhaps what you are looking for is a more complete and specific tool for the purpose. Very good: what you need is to know how GoToWebinar works.

GoToWebinar is an advanced service, especially indicated for pay webinar: allows the promoter of the initiative to establish a cost and the participants to pay comfortably through credit / debit card. To receive the money for the "virtual tickets" paid by users, it will be necessary to connect the third-party service Stripe all'account personale su GoToWebinar.

For the rest, GoToWebinar offers subscription plans starting from 109 € per month (€ 89 per month if you choose the annual billing), allowing you to take advantage of a free trial of 7 days. Among the functions of the service there is the possibility to record simulated live shows, useful for planning an intervention on a global scale, without worrying about the time zone, as well as to publish your webinars on the platform. GoToStage, designed to give greater visibility to content and acquire new audiences.

To use GoToWebinar, if you are an organizer (but it may also be essential if you are a participant in a webinar), you will need to download the service's desktop application to Windows o MacOS. Start, therefore, by connecting to the official website which, however, you will find under the name of GoToMeeting: in fact you will be redirected to this system for organizing your online seminars, as GoToWebinar is an internal product of this service. You can also download the app from the Google Play Store (or an alternative store, if you don't have the services of Google) if you have a device Android, or from the App Store, if you have a iPhone / iPad.

Then read carefully my guide on how to download GoToMeeting on PC, not only to know the activation procedure of the GoToWebinar related service but, above all, to know what are the minimum requirements to be able to use it, at the operating system, browser and hardware level. For more info, also read the GoToWebinar technical support page.

Other webinar solutions

The topic stimulates your interest and, in addition to the platforms described in the previous paragraphs, at this point you would like to know other webinar solutions. Perfect! Here is a list of the best.

  • Twitch - definitely one of the fastest growing online platforms for live streaming (also available as an app version for Android and iOS / iPadOS), it can also be used for webinars, courses, tutorials (now no longer just about video games). If you still don't know it, read my guide on how Twitch works.
  • Cisco Webex Meetings - is another of the most popular web applications for videoconferencing, also usable for free and from Android and iOS / iPadOS apps, it allows you to invite up to 40.000 people, plan presentations and share your screen easily, when needed. For more info on the service, read my guide on how to download Cisco Webex.
  • ClickMeeting - if you are interested in producing paid webinars, this is a great alternative to GoToMeeting / GoToWebinar. The service is accessed through paid plans that start at € 22 per month and flows can also be managed via PayPal. Also in this case, the app version of ClickMeeting is available for Android and iOS / iPadOS.

Finally, I invite you to read my guides on how to do a webinar and how to record a webinar, to know in detail the major services dedicated to the purpose and useful information on how to make an effective webinar.

How webinar works

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