Are you seeing low webinar attendance rates?
Are people not engaged or drop off frequently during your webinar?
Are you still using the same static, dull screen?
Does your webinar have a monologue tone?
Are you having a brain freeze on how to make webinars interactive?
Besides poor content, lack of interaction during the live webinar is a significant reason the human mind is exhausted, causing webinar and Zoom fatigue.
In a survey, 37.1% of employees said zoom fatigue is the major challenge of virtual meetings.
The only solution to defeating webinar fatigue is to make your webinars fun. Before we jump into practical ideas we have seen work, we must dive deep into how interactive webinars can help.
Table of contents
- Why should you host interactive webinars?
- Ten practical tips to make a webinar interactive (with Examples)
- Use a conversational tone
- Inject storytelling with personal anecdotes
- Ask people to introduce and connect with fellow attendees
- Create visually appealing slides
- Use polls or surveys to kick off the session
- Make it fun with gamification
- Put up leaderboards to show the scores
- Have freebies to offer at the end of the session
- Host Ask me anything (AMA) sessions
- Collect feedback in between the sessions
- Best interactive webinar platforms in 2022
Why should you make webinars interactive?
- Encourage attendees to stay for the entire session: By adding polls, QAs, and fun games at the suitable interval, you encourage attendees to stay longer.
- To avoid Zoom fatigue: Fun webinars help avoid Zoom fatigue which arises when you don’t allow attendees to interact.
- Foster a feeling of community: By adding interactivity, you invite people to share their views, give feedback and interact with fellow attendees.
- Create brand recall: When your audience has a good experience, they tend to recall your brand; this further boosts word of mouth and referrals, boosting brand awareness.
- Higher retention rate: Interactive webinars enhance user experience and build brand credibility, which compels attendees to come again to attend another session.
- Richer data collection that can be used for remarketing: You can access loads of pain points your audience asks during the session. This data is a goldmine for you to create retargeting campaigns.
Ten practical tips to make a webinar interactive (with Examples)
Here we will cover ten tips to make your upcoming webinar more engaging and interactive:
1. Use a conversational tone
Avoid speaking for a long duration without engaging with your audience. If you do this, you’ll push your audience away. So, focus on a conversational tone that incites attendees and compels them to listen.
Here are seven quick tips
- Try using less formal language
- Record yourself reading your content out loud
- Take pauses and amplify key points & takeaways
- Include audience polls organically during webinars
- Use gestures – moving around helps
- Take breaks to interact with the webinar chat
2. Inject storytelling with personal anecdotes
People connect when you share anecdotes and personal stories and build a narrative around a concept. It makes them see themselves in those stories and relate to you. So, if you want to bring interactivity to your virtual events, use storytelling.
Here’s how Headspace uses storytelling by sharing real-life examples and opinions from their employees.
Some other ways to include real-life examples are
- customer success stories
- mistakes you made
- people you have inspired you
- travel and city stories
- stories from college & friends
- popular tv shows
3. Ask people to introduce and connect with fellow attendees
It is one of the standard and courteous things to do when you start a webinar. Instead of jumping right into the session, take a few minutes to introduce yourself. There might be first-time viewers who might not be familiar with you and your organization.
Besides, encourage attendees to introduce themselves in the live chat box option offered by the webinar tool you’re using. It will make them connect with fellow attendees and create a fun experience for them.
An excellent example of this is The Cutting Room show by Tommy Walker, where he always asks attendees to introduce themselves in the chat.
4. Create visually appealing slides
If you use presentations, make them visually appealing by playing with typography, color themes, images, multimedia, etc. A plain text presentation can become boring, and attendees will yawn, staring at a bare white screen.
But, using the right color and images, you can showcase your brand identity and create a visually appealing experience for the attendees.
Here’s an example from Pixar on how to tell a story
5. Use audience polls
Asking for a poll is a great way to kick off the session. It grabs the attention of attendees and compels them to share their views. You can ask the relevant question or your audience’s pain points, address them immediately, boost credibility, and excite them to watch the session.
I’ve been using polls in webinars for years, and I’ve seen a huge change in engagement rate. I’ve also seen a huge difference in the quality of the questions asked by my audience. Before I started using polls, it was basically just me talking to my audience. But now they feel like they have a voice and they’re invested in the conversation—and the results have been incredible!Gauri Manglik CEO and Co-Founder, Instrumentl
6. Make it fun with gamification
Adding gamification is the ultimate way to make a webinar interactive – whether for e-learning, employee engagement, workshops, or networking. Gamification is what Under Armour uses to maximize engagement.
Some of the best games webinar hosts have used on our platform are
- Quizzes: Run single-select and multi-select quizzes.
- Video Contests: Announce a contest, such as a plank challenge and ask participants to submit their videos.
- Caption Contests: Publish a photo and ask attendees to give it a suitable caption.
- Scavenger Hunts: Give clues to find hidden gems.
- Puzzles: Ask them to solve puzzles preferably related to the content you are sharing.
- Photo Contests: Ask attendees to submit their best shot and unleash their hidden photographer
7. Put up leaderboards to show the scores
Add a leaderboard if you add polls, quizzes, and other contests between the webinar. It will reflect the score of participants and keep them updated about their progress.
It will create a spirit of competitiveness to reach the highest place and keep your audience glued to their seat until the contest results are announced.
Here’s how the leaderboard looks like on nunify
8. Have freebies to offer at the end of the session
Offering virtual gifts and freebies at the end of the session encourages your audience to attend the entire session. You can give these freebies about the score gained by the attendees in other contests such as trivia quizzes or polls.
To encourage higher participation, keep announcing the giveaway in between the sessions.
9. Host Ask me anything (AMA) sessions
These sessions are more engaging because you are engaging with your audience in real time. This fosters a feeling of community as your audience feels heard and valued. ON24’s data shows that 81% of marketers use Q&A as an engagement tool during webinars, while 69% also provide download resources.
AMA sessions also boost engagement as your audience will be more prompted to ask follow-up questions and engage with your post-event emails.
Here’s an excellent example of an Ask me Anything session conducted on Youtube. You can see the people asking questions in the live chat and speakers answering them.
10. Collect feedback in between the sessions
Use emojis or thumb-up ratings to engage attendees and collect their feedback in real time. This real-time feedback can offer insights into whether your audience is enjoying the session. If not, you can adjust the tone or content between sessions to cater to your audience’s needs. Don’t forget to use an exit webinar survey.
Best interactive webinar platforms in 2022
Making webinars interactive becomes easy when you have the right tool. Here are our top 5 webinar platforms that can help you bring interactivity to your webinars:
Nunify is among the best hybrid event platforms to supercharge your webinar performance via event gamification. You can use Nunify to bring interactivity to your webinars, from leaderboard contests to fun games.
Demio delivered the webinar through real-time HD streaming. It allows you to get super-fast responses from your audience in interactive rooms built to boost engagement and facilitate two-way communication.
Livestorm is another interactive webinar solution that lets you create customized live experiences that attract and engage your target audience. From polls to QNAs, this software will help you gain more engagement.
Whether you are a SaaS or a coach operating in the virtual world or physical, Webinar Ninja will help you add interactivity to your webinar in no time.
Airmeet is another interactive webinar tool that can maximize session attendance by aligning games and contests in your webinar and assigning scores and rewards for the best performers.
Bring interactivity to your webinars.
Interactive webinars are the future of webinar marketing. The more valuable and relevant information you share, the more you can reap the benefits of interactivity. But, interactive webinars won’t be beneficial if your content is irrelevant to your audience.
Create a memorable experience for your audience by aligning your webinar’s interactive and educational aspects.
What are live interactive webinars?
A live interactive webinar is an online session where the audience can engage during the webinar. For example, a live chat audience can engage with fellow attendees, ask questions, and share their opinions.
What is the difference between webinars vs. interactive webinars?
An interactive webinar is a subset of webinars where different tools, activities, and widgets are used between sessions to boost engagement and networking. Interactive webinars facilitate two-way communication, while traditional webinars create a monologue.
How would you design a webinar that will be interactive?
Webinars are made interactive using tools like Live Q&A, public chat, private DM, raise hands to come live, and emojis. Some platforms also provide breakout rooms & speed networking.
How do you interact with someone on a webinar?
The host administers audience interaction with others or the presenter in a webinar. For interacting with the presenter, popular webinar platforms provide tools such as live q&A, public chat, audience polls, and reaction emojis. Networking-focused webinars will also provide speed networking & breakout rooms. So if you don’t see any below, ensure you check with the host.
How do I make my webinar more interesting?
Some practical, easy-to-implement methods include audience polls, taking breaks to talk to public chat, making time for Q&A, and catchy personal stories. Advanced techniques include gamification, unplanned giveaways, breakout rooms, invite secret special guests.