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Ten Tips for Successful Internet Marketing Webinars

Internet marketing webinars are one of the most powerful ways on the planet to increase your market reach, find hundreds of qualified leads at a time, and establish powerful credibility with people that have never met you face-to-face. In your Internet marketing plan, webinars are as critical as your website, your e-mail marketing strategy, your responsive opt-in list, your podcasts, and your blog.

An Internet marketing webinar is an interactive session with a remote group that is linked live through Web conference at audio conference technology. Unfortunately, too many businesses are giving "Death by PowerPoint" presentations, which hold down results. Interaction is a central part of what makes Internet marketing webinars so successful.

If you are currently using tele-seminars for Internet marketing or training, webinars are a significant step up. In tele-seminars, people can't see you, your face, or your presence. On the other hand, webinars give you a significantly improved ability to fill that gap with fabulous, intriguing audience interaction. In your marketing presentation, when you get the interaction piece right, webinars can act like magic to catapult your business growth.

Here are ten tips for creating successful Internet marketing webinars.

• Choose a reliable, proven Web conference technology. The foundation for a successful event is great technology. Be absolutely sure that your web conference technology is technically excellent and has instant technical support for meetings in progress. Does your web conference technology have a proven record of working well across firewalls? Is it easy for first-time users to get into your webinar? Does the technology involuntarily eject people during live sessions? On your slides, dothe background, images, and text on your sides look clear and free from all distortions? Importantly, if the technology doesn't work right, people will be upset with you and their experience in your webinar, not with the conferencing provider. Choose a technology that lets you and your presentation shine.

• Use an interactive Web conference technology. Don't make the mistake of using a web conference technology that only shares slides. At minimum, your Web conference technology must include two interactive features, and three is even better. First is a polling feature that handles single-or multiple-choice questions. Importantly, the polling feature must let you instantly share the results graphically (not just numbers) with everyone linked to your session.

Second is a live Q&A or chat feature. At minimum, the audience can ask questions immediately, in real time, during your webinar, and get an individual typed or voice response. Far better is if selected audience questions can also be published to the group, along with the response. Third is a spontaneous audience response panel or feature where the audience can quickly respond with a simple response (like yes/no). During your presentation, it is also important to use all of these interactive features several times.

• Use a headset. Never use the speakerphone capability when you give a presentation or speak in a webinar. Even if your phone has an echo-reducing feature, there will always still be echo. As a result, you'll sound far away, like you're talking from an empty auditorium. Your voice will sound muffled; your words, unclear. All of these are very fatiguing to the person that is trying to listen and understand you. On the other hand, a headset lets your voice sound close and clear. Avoid wireless headsets, as the people at the other end may hear a humming sound from your wireless connection that you can't--like you may have experienced on a mobile phone. Wireless headsets and wireless laptops often escalate this problem. When in doubt, test it out.

• Design your webinar presentation and for rich, relevant interaction. When you can't see your audiences face, it's very easy to get into an "all presentation" mode. Effective face-to-faced presenters always interact with their audience. They pay close attention to nonverbal cues. They ask questions that elicit an overt response. They have the audience observe each other's reaction. Consciously engaging their audience is what makes them successful. In interactive webinars, effective presenters must do the same. When an online presenter can't see the desktop audience's the nonverbal cues, they have to get very creative about using polls and other means to fill that void.

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