How many times have you sat through a webinar so dreadful you thought, “If this were on TV, no one would be watching!”
I know I have. That’s several hours on LinkedIn I’m never getting back.
Ugly slides. Tinny sound. A camera positioned so low you can see right up the presenter’s nose. Not the most inspiring way to spend an hour, is it?
But webinars are more popular than ever. 73% of companies say webinars are the best way to generate high-quality leads (GoToWebinar).
So making yours look and sound polished is crucial to making it worthwhile and bringing in leads.
So, here are three simple and cost-effective tips to make your next webinar look a million dollars.
Use a dedicated webinar microphone
Getting good quality sound in any video production is just as important as getting good picture quality. But in the case of a webinar, sound quality is even more critical.
Like videos on social media are usually watched without sound, webinars are sometimes heard without visuals.
Imagine if your attendees are sneakily bunking off work to check out your presentation or so engaged in your content, they’re scribbling notes on another app. They might not have eyes on your presentation, so you need to ensure that the audio of your webinar comes through loud and clear!
Having a microphone that isn’t built into the camera or device, you’re broadcasting from will give you far better sound quality.
Something like the RØDE NT-USB is perfect. It’s a studio-quality USB microphone that’s designed for voices. It has a built-in pop shield that helps reduce audio distortion and has a handy desktop stand so it can sit right in front of you as you present.
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Design killer webinar video slide decks
Using slide decks as part of a webinar keeps your audience engaged in your content and helps them remember the key points.
The first step to this is making sure the design of your slide deck is up to scratch.
Imagine if you’d been looking forward to someone’s webinar for days, and when they started, their first slide looked like this.
Pretty messy to say the least!
The best approach is to consider using a professional graphic designer to create a slide deck template for you. if you provide them with all the brand elements of your business and any examples of slide decks you like (or don’t like) they’re sure to come up with an impressive design.
Alternatively, if you’re happy to be more hands-on, use a template from somewhere like Canva or GraphicRiver instead. Whilst these won’t be tailored to your brand, they will have a professional look and feel that will elevate it above the standard templates that come with packages like PowerPoint or Google Slides.
Here are a few tips for professional-looking slide decks:
- Keep your slides on-brand by using your brand colours and font throughout.
- Use illustrations, photos and icons to highlight key points. But keep them simple, don’t overuse them or rely on cheesy stock images or dated designs.
- Avoid complicated charts and graphs if possible so your audience can stay focused on what you’re saying and not get lost in trying to decipher complex data.
- Pay attention to white space. Give each element on the page breathing room, and don’t cram too much information on one slide. Slides filled with bullet points look plain ugly!
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Webinar camera tips
Choosing the right space to broadcast your webinar can make or break it. Get it right, and your webinar video will look every bit the professional presentation you want it to be.
Get it wrong, and it’s likely to look more like a hostage video broadcast over dial-up internet!
Firstly, pick a room that has a lot of soft natural light. The main light source light should ideally be coming from in front of you to illuminate your face, rather than behind which creates a silhouette look. You can always use a simple LED light positioned at around 30 degrees behind your camera to help give your face a lift.
The camera needs to be at eye level or slightly above. Any lower, and you’ll be giving everyone a high-definition snapshot of your nostrils. Pop your laptop up on a few books to raise the height if need be.
Position yourself centrally in the frame without too much ‘headroom’ at the top. Use the rule of thirds as a guide. This is where your eyes are positioned one-third of the way down from the top of the frame.
Keep your background distraction-free. Sorry, but no one cares how many awards or copies of your own book are on your shelf. A plain white background is fine as it reduces distractions and ensures all eyes are on you and your content.
You can read more about what makes an excellent filming location here too.
Ultimately, you don’t need to be an experienced cinematographer or high-end designer to enhance the quality of your webinars.
You don’t even need the most expensive webcam on Amazon.
Make a few improvements to the sound, slides and setup of your webinar, and you’re onto a winner.
You never know, it might even look good enough for TV.