When you think of a webinar, what comes to mind? It depends on who you are. It might be an online meeting with other office branches, a training session, a sales and marketing presentation, or an interactive classroom. Either way, webinars have become commonplace in our ever-changing society. There are so many great ways to utilize a great communication tool like a webinar, and those ways are better when they are free!
Being the “new kid” on the web, we at Freebinar feel that it is vital to know what our consumers think of our service, and what industry they are using it for. We decided to draft a survey to truly get a feel of our current demographic and their needs. What we found was both surprising and exciting.
According to our survey, 44.4% of our customers are utilizing the free platform for training and educational purposes. Marketing and sales follows closely behind at 33.3%. This was surprising to me, considering how often I see webinars utilized in the sales and marketing realm. Online teaching and training, however, have been gaining momentum in the last few years. Today, human resources programs have been known to bring on-the-job training online, and virtually every college institution has online course opportunities.
You do not need to be a college professor or HR administrator to conduct lessons online; anyone can use webinars to train and teach—to large or small groups. Tools that are useful in educational webinars include screen sharing (this can encompass anything on your screen, like PowerPoint slides) Q&A-style chat, survey and polling capabilities, registration tools, voice communication through phone conferencing, and so forth. These features can be found on Freebinar.com.
eLearn Magazine posted an article by Jo-Ann Driscoll, all about online training—equipped with tips on how to get started. The article is titled “Designing and Delivering Live, Online Training,” and answers many common questions regarding online education. She ultimately states that it is not difficult to move to live, online training from a physical classroom environment.
Ken Molay, president of Webinar Success, and blog-master of The Webinar Blog, is a firm believer in moving training courses to the web. He recently held his own webinar dedicated to this subject matter, where he addressed advantages and disadvantages of educational webinars versus local training, how to benefit from web conferencing, what types of training does and does not work best in webinars, and the best way to interact with online students. Molay’s webinar took place earlier this month, but his blog consistently provides useful tips and commentary on the subject of webinars and their successful implementation.
If you are considering conducting training or lessons online, you may be pleasantly surprised with an increase in student enrollment due to the flexibility of the given course. It is an avenue definitely worth exploring, and will save money in the long run. You won’t only save money for choosing a free platform like Freebinar, but you will ultimately save money by not having a need to secure a classroom or space, provide tangible materials, or travel!