There is no doubt that webinars are becoming extremely powerful and popular today for communicating with people. Whether it is for personal communication or for holding business conferences, one-to-one business deals there is no doubt that the use of webinars is no longer a choice but is becoming a big necessity.
This is because of a number of reasons. Businesses are today not restricted to one locality or a particular city or town. They are spread across states, countries, and even across continents and in various other faraway locations.
Further, there is no denying the fact that the corona pandemic that is sweeping across various parts of the world is posing major health challenges. It has severely restricted the movement of people across cities, towns, regions, and countries. In such situations, there is no doubt that the only way of establishing contact with individuals, groups, and other stakeholders becomes quite difficult.
This is where the use of webinars and various other tools is becoming vital. While the videos and audios speakers are important, the role of slides for webinars is also becoming highly important and critical.
Importance of slides
There is no doubt that audiovisual means of communication are extremely important. Hence, there is a growing shift towards slides and other forms of communication. They are appealing, impressive and they hit off well with the audience.
What takes 30 to 45 minutes of speaking can be explained much better in around 15 to 20 minutes when you have graphs, slides, and other pictorial representations of information. Data and figures always go down well with the audience if it is presented in slide form. It is easy for them to comprehend and understand and it also stays registered in the minds of the people for a longer period of time.
Simplified graphs with only a few data points or a visual representation icons will conway your point so much clearer the just words or a bounch of numbers.
If you need to show an acurate data hand it out in stead and leave the slide clean.
Further, it is also possible to send soft copies of the various webinar slides to the participants by way of mails and other forms of communication. They can co-relate what they had heard and seen during webinars with hard and soft copies. This will enhance the recall value of such webinars and the information dissemination will be much better. Further, the slides can be referred back and forth as and when necessary.
It could become a permanent source of information.
While there is no doubt that there are some obvious advantages and benefits of using slides and other forms of audiovisual presentations, it also comes with certain challenges and problems. Many of those who use slides during webinars make some cardinal and simple mistakes. These could prove costly and therefore should be avoided. However, they can be avoided only when those who are using it know where there are going wrong.
Some common benefits of using slides
Apart from the above, there are some other common reasons why it makes sense to use the right webinar slide deck for your zoom meetings, conferences, and presentations. Most of the slides are always on PowerPoint because it is proven, time tested, and is known for its ease of use. It also is understood well by the audience and it allows better interaction with them.
It saves time: When you conduct a webinar with the help of pre-made slides, you will be able to save time. As mentioned above, you will be able to put across difficult topics quite easily and in a much shorter time. Therefore, you will, as a presenter, be able to make more sense and bring in more productivity to your webinar presentations.
Easy to customize: Once you have a slide made, you can just modify the numbers, data, and information and this again will make things easier and you will avoid the need to start from scratch.
It could help bring in uniformity and improve brand recall and brand recognition. It will be a good way to improve sales and revenues because these are closely related to brand recall and brand value.
Pitfalls to avoid with your webinar slides
We are now happy to share a few things about your slides that could make your whole webinar a failure. These are not too difficult to correct and it is all about understanding the things that you should bear in mind and then acting accordingly.
1. Not making webinar interactive
The first and foremost point is to ensure that the webinar is made as interesting as it is possible.
Yes, the speaker has a big role to play, but this alone may not be the way forward. You have to understand the importance of using the various tools effectively. Slides play a big role but you must know how to use the slides effectively and properly. There must be an interaction between the speaker, the audience, and the slides that he or she is making use of.
There is no point have a slide that is dull-looking monotonous and one-sided. It should evince interest in the audience and they must be ready to make interjections and ask questions to the speaker. This is possible when the information flow from the slide to the audience is seamless, simple, and easily understandable.
2. The slide must be well-presented
Anything that is well presented certainly attracts the right people. It starts with the way one dressed for a meet and the kind of body language that we are able to showcase. The same applies to our slides too. Whether it is a PowerPoint presentation or something else, we quite often spend more time on the contents, data, numbers and figures.
While these are important, we tend to ignore the way in which the entire slide looks. It all starts with the background color, the font sizes and the way in which figures are represented before the audience. We often make use of figures and data in our effort to get the message across to the audience. This is a good idea but it would be better to represent it in a graph form instead of plain and simple numbers.
3. Always respect audiences’ time
Time is precious.
When we think about this old proverb, we often start believing that it applies only to us. This is totally wrong. We must always look at this proverb from the perspective of the audience when we are conducting a webinar. The audience are sparing their valuable time and attending the webinar and therefore we must learn how to respect their time.
While using webinar slides is a wonderful decision, we must cut down on unwanted things and should focus only on what is necessary. While you must start and end the webinar on time, you also must not waste too much time on various slides that you may have prepared for the webinar.
The number of slides must be as few as you possible can make it. You must run through the contents fast but at a pace where the audience is able to understand it and comprehend it. You must also leave enough time for the audience to ask questions, raise doubts and you also, as the speaker and presenter have enough time to answer the questions to the complete satisfaction of the audience.
It would be a good idea to have the question and answer session after the end of the presentation so that the overall flow of the webinar is not impacted any manner whatsoever.
4. Don’t pitch too hard or try to harass the audience
The main purpose of any webinar that is accompanied by slides is to make sure that you are able to pass on the information and share useful and pertinent communication with the audience. While your webinar must use slides intelligently for this purpose, overdoing it and trying the hustle the audience should be avoided at all times.
You must not be seen forcing something down the throat of the audience and should always leave the questions open-ended. This is all the more true when you are making a product presentation. Your slides and the webinar must be seen as a means of sharing information and communication rather than trying to hard-sell some product or service or even a concept.
5. Using too many numbers and text
The main purpose of using webinars and slides thereof is to ensure that the message reaches across to the persons concerned as best as it possibly can be sent. However, many of us in our zeal to pack too much information make it clogged with numbers and texts.
This might make sense to you, but for an audience that is sitting perhaps hundreds or even thousands of miles away too much of text and numbers will for sure put them off. They will lose interest in the entire webinar and the final outcome will be extremely poor and you may have lost a prospective sale or business. Therefore, you must always keep your webinar slides as clear and concise as you possibly can so that you are able to make the best out of it.
You could rehearse on the webinar slides and then make some alterations and corrections as you possibly can before moving forward.
As webinars and online meetings and conferences become the norm of the day, you must know how to make the best use of it. While slides and other audiovisual means of communication coupled with speaker speeches are important, you must not make the above mistakes when it comes to presenting slides.
You may not get a second chance and therefore you must make the best use of the opportunity that is available to you.
Training is one of the most important factors for holding a successful webinar. If you want to make sure if you have everything covered, you can check to my checklist for webinar consultant here…