How to organize a webinar?

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How to organize a webinar?

The term "webinar" refers to online seminars achieved through the use of videoconferencing tools. Webinars can meet the communication needs of small and medium enterprises (training, lectures, presentation, workshops). Overview of best practices to be followed to organize a webinar.

Webinars - The benefits

The term webinar is the contraction of the following words: web and seminar.
For a business, the stakes can be varied:
  • Avoiding travelling costs (train employees).
  • Reach new prospects through innovative form of communication.

The webinars are mainly based on a defined theme:
  • Training for new employees.
  • Presentation of a financial statement.
  • Business proposal to a prospect.
  • Assessing the progress of a project.

Webinars a can be schedule specific time and date, with a limited number of guests. The number of participants may be limited or determined by the video conferencing tool used.

Adopting best practices

The basic principles

There are several tools that can be used to organise a webinar in a business. Some are paid, while others are free. Most of them are delivered in SaaS mode and therefore accessible through a web browser.

Establishing the objectives of the webinar

Beside choosing the theme and audience of the webinar, you will have to define its objectives and some rules.
Example: A meeting between the members of the board of directors will not have the same organization or the same objectives as a webinar for the training of employees.
  • A specialized webinar, with specific tools (screen sharing).
  • Limiting the time allowed to each speaker (Complex webinars normally have a limited audience).

How to organize the webinar?

Several steps can be followed to optimize a webinar:
  • Invite participants by email and ensure that the invitation has been received,
  • Check if the participants have access to the videoconferencing tool.
  • Secure the event, with a password or access code.
  • Define the role of the participants: who will speak during the webinar..etc
  • An instant messaging tool will allow participants to communicate, without it interrupting the speaker.
  • Some videoconferencing tools include options to record or broadcast the webinar. This may be an interesting alternative, if the content of the webinar can be used as part of the company's training material.

Tools to organize a webinar

Google Hangout

Google Hangout can be either used for online conferencing by businesses or live video broadcasting. It is integrated to the Google+ social network and is also accessible via gmail and dedicated mobile applications. *Hangout sessions can accommodate up to ten participants connected via their Google account. Google *Hangout is free and allow the use of other collaborative applications for the sharing and reading documents (SlideShare, Google Drive ...).

GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar

GoToMeeting is an online video conferencing service.
  • Video conferencing
  • Screen sharing
  • iOS and Android applications available.

The GoToWebinar application allows you to organize webinars with up to a thousand participants. is mainly based on the screen sharing. It is accessible without registration and participants can join the webinar through a URL. also includes:
  • A file sharing utility.
  • A VoIP module.
Jean-François Pillou

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