EventBuilder webinar strategies blog

How can non-profits create more value with webinar panel discussions? Interview with Sheba McCants, National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

March 20 2018 / by Roger Courville

Sheba McCants is the Outreach Programs Manager at National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (ncadv.org). Among the many things she juggles, she has recently taken their monthly webinars to the next level by implementing panel discussions.

In this “coffee chat” session with EventBuilder’s Roger Courville they discuss

  • What it takes to wrangle guests for a panel virtual panel discussion
  • Practical limits to how many guests to include
  • What NCADV’s member survey revealed about what their constituents want
  • How to use webinar tools to create more audience engagement
  • Tactics for how Sheba delivers “certificates of attendance”

 

 

Transcript (auto-generated by YouTube, unedited)

Hey everybody Roger Courville here an

event builder for another just like a

cup of coffee with somebody that I'm

really excited to chat with who are you

and what do you do let's start right

there

absolutely well thank you for us first

thank you so much for having me my name

is Sheba McCants and I'm the outreach

programs manager for the National

Coalition Against Domestic Violence

otherwise known as NCA DV and yeah so

I'm kind of new to the staff there and

one thing that I do is I manage our

webinar series so we do a monthly

educational webinar series and I am in

charge of kind of putting together the

content for that and yeah thinking of

interesting topics bringing in good

speakers and putting together those sort

of overall production of the webinar

thank you for that introduction and let

me share this with our audience Sheba

and I met will just put that in quotes

she and I met at an event that I spoke

at five vish months ago or something

like that and then we just had a

follow-up conversation and and talked a

lot about webinars and what they were

getting ready to do and I was just I was

just really encouraged by not only how

she was thinking about of putting this

particular medium to work for a good

cause but also how she was thinking

about creating value for constituents in

a non-profit and I so I thought if we

could just kind of extrapolate what she

has learned in the ensuing few months

into what anybody in a non-profit might

do to create more value and awareness

within their constituents and and I

thought Sheba might be a great person to

talk to

so she but just out of curiosity kind of

going back to that time when when you

and I met October I guess it was yeah

tell me kind of how things evolved from

there when you started you and I as I

recall you and I had a conversation

about I'm thinking about topics how do

would I manage a panel of people that

kind of thing tell me kind of how you

you attacked the whole subject of

putting webinars to use in your

organization sure so in October we had

had we had the webinars planned through

2017

so I was good for a couple months but I

really wanted to kick off 2018 with kind

of a new approach or just like you know

a fresh new series for 2018 and so when

I was on the I was on a on a training

webinar to learn more about the tools

and software but I also learned a little

bit about sort of how to approach it

that I think really did help me so I

learned a little bit about how you can

approach a webinar similarly to how you

would approach an in-person event so if

you think about the ways that you would

go about structuring something in person

and then sort of thinking of ways you

can translate that to a web-based medium

so I always I was thinking okay we gotta

try to make these sort of fun or

interactive so before we were we weren't

using the webcam as often but since then

we have consistently been using the

webcam which I feel is really helpful

and I think it increases the engagement

of our attendees which is awesome and

then so yeah I created my first quarter

I planned out my events by quarter so I

had my first quarter 2018 of any sort of

webinars sort of a planned and all three

of them were panel discussions so I had

to learn a little bit about how to

structure one of those on the web for

the first three of them I have been the

moderator for the panels and then I have

them I have basically recruited or

worked with a number of different

subject matter experts or speakers so

it's been really cool do you want me to

just tell you a little bit about how

they went yes I would love to in fact I

would even love to parse a couple of

those things that you just shared with

regard to turning it into how to write

so I want to both understand how it went

for you but then we'll kind of come back

to San great when you recruited your

panel was there something in particular

that you said to them so that they

thought that they understood what you

were trying to do it may be as opposed

to a typical webinar that they may have

experienced in the past but yes how did

they go I'm excited yeah the first one

the first one in January I think that

was kind of like our trial because we

hadn't really done a panel

or I had news with the organization and

and we had five panelists they were from

all across the country and one really

key thing that I felt like helped me so

much was doing the test run so I

scheduled a test run one week in advance

and got everybody together there via the

web in advance on the webcam so we could

kind of meet each other you know just

chitchat a little bit get to know each

other but also work through some of

those inevitable technology gaps that

you always have to address like does

your webcam work does your audio work

these things that are kind of a

deal-breaker there those are a

deal-breaker when it comes to webinars

so you have to have good audio and we

kind of learned that through experience

of it not going well so we knew we

really got a double check and make sure

everybody's audio is working properly so

I think the the first test run went

really smooth the webinar also went

really great week we did have some

pretty great attendance I felt like

there was increased engagement because

people were they were happy to hear from

sort of multiple resources the first

webinar we did was during January and it

was during human trafficking Awareness

Month and so we put together a panel of

different experts we also had the

academic we had like a researcher a

professor available also to talk to us

about how how that topic is being

addressed from a research standpoint we

had a federal level campaign which was

interesting because there were a lot of

like we were not sure if that person was

going to make it because there was like

a government shutdown the day before so

just all very interesting you know

scenario but everything went really

smooth and I got I got really good

feedback from the participants about it

the tools they felt like the webcam was

really cool I also started doing polls

in the beginning of the webinar to learn

more about the audience and those are

super easy to do and I think can help

you a lot in terms of your metrics or

what you're trying to evaluate yeah just

out of curiosity when you did polling to

me there's always kind of a couple ways

to attack that one approach to to

polling is to ask a question like an

attorney where I'm asking a question

where I already know the answer right

and I want it I want the data to show up

in a way that kind of supports my

message or my cause

the alternative is to a hair suck

question I really don't know the answer

to how am I gonna can I get some

information and use this as kind of

almost a mini research project something

you can do both at the registration page

of a webinar but also in polling it

could be like a mini research project

right I get 100 responses 200 responses

right on the spot yeah anyway just

curiously if you had in a particular

approach I think that ours was a little

bit more from the research standpoint

because I think that even our presenters

they want to know sort of who's in the

room essentially they want to know if

the people in the room are dealing are

working you know on a daily basis with

with this issue or is it something that

they just sort of haven't encountered

and so I think that was one question

that really helped our presenters was

knowing for that particular webinar

about human trafficking you know our our

people are basically our attendees are a

lot of advocates so are the advocates

noticing that they are working with

people who are going through human

trafficking is it coming up in their

everyday work whereas you know I didn't

we didn't know that we wouldn't have any

way of knowing that coming in so it is

sort of work research approach

interesting just in a curiosity when did

you experience any super positive or

super negative things in terms of a

learning from the process of recruiting

people for a panel I think one of the

key things that I noticed is just not to

not to over recruit or not to bring on

too many panelists I think probably for

me the sweet spot or the number would be

like for I think once you get five maybe

it feels like a lot of presenters and

then so that's just from my experience

but I think for four panelists included

and then in addition to that one

moderator is a good number but I have

found people to be pretty receptive to

participating I think I think that

people are generally very open

especially if you give them a little bit

of structure so that's one thing I

wanted to bring up because I you helped

me with that

which was I wanted each panelist to come

to the panel with sort of an actionable

learning objective

or like a take away some presents in

October the audience

yeah and that was something you

suggested and I thought yes that's a

good idea because sometimes when you ask

somebody to be a part of your panel or

do a presentation they are they're not

sure sort of what their role is and so

to tell them okay all we need you to do

is give one tangible sort of actionable

learning objective and and that feels

very much doable for presenters and it

challenges them all so think okay what's

gonna be that one thing that I can offer

and just out of curiosity since that

first event that you did in January was

with five did you feel that that was

that did you give did that give each of

the panelists a sufficient amount of

time to kind of be able to air their

voice I think that that's the challenge

is that if you have too many panelists

you have to your webinar time frame may

increase to a point where it's maybe a

little too long so I think five was

really the max that I think I could go

in order to give them enough time

that would be ran pretty close to on

time my February one it was a little bit

over okay well that sounds like a good

transition so tell me how that went from

January to February and and what you

learned along the way sure I think the

February one um it was such a different

group of people so this um I think that

we had a really great rapport all of our

speakers really enjoyed being on the

webinar and so they're taught I think

that maybe having five people it just

went a little bit too long like there

was there's so much that we could talk

about so I think as a as an organizer

sometimes thinking about the structure

is really important because you want to

structure it so that it doesn't have the

potential to go way too long so thinking

creatively about how to do that is key

so was there something in particular

that you learned that you would do

differently or refine for next time um I

think that you know maybe doing

something like where you give some you

give a presenter a five minute warning

I did that for my first webinar and I

didn't do it for my second one which I

probably should have stuck to that

practice like I did the first time which

was just keeping them

like a chat and saying you're at your at

your five-minute mark let's wrap it up

because I think on a webinar it can be

tougher to do that because you're not

physically in the room and so you know

if you were at a conference they would

just give you like the the paper and

they would say five more minutes by

holding the lecture

yeah it's not exactly the same you know

to be able to do that and then in

addition to that we do look we do a live

Q&A; as part of each of our webinars and

so depending on the speaker or the topic

sometimes your Q&A; can become quite long

so you'll also have to be able to rein

that in at the same time yeah yeah I

remember when you and I talked to hat

you know back in October that one of the

topics was managing a panel where every

one of these people is an expert and or

passionate about something in their own

right rather whether it's an academic or

somebody in the you know on the street

from a government position who's

actually seeing firsthand the the nature

of the of the problem or the issue and

yeah one of the challenges you get a

whole panel of people and any one of

them could have talked for an hour

absolutely in each one of their sections

could easily become an hour so that's

why I think from what I've learned it's

just been like don't don't take on more

than you can actually really fit into

one conversation so maybe thinking about

maybe a maximum of four people's points

of view and on each on each webinar I do

ask for feedback so on my surveys I

often get I have gotten a couple pieces

of feedback about that maybe it's a

little too many presenters if I've

gotten a few of a few pieces of feedback

on that not too many yeah but I

appreciate it because it helps me think

about you know sort of how can you

create sort of a best practice around

how to create a panel or how to

structure one of these on the webinar

yeah just out of curiosity did you use

any of that end of event survey activity

to query the audience that was there

about topics they would like to hear

more about in the future yes actually I

did that was my last question am I

dreaming about topics to hear in the

future and that really helps me in terms

of because I planned quarterly for my

webinars and so when I'm thinking about

the next core

I really oftentimes do go over those

surveys and think about okay which areas

are people people consistently asking

for and I use that to inform my topic

selection moving forward I think maybe

potentially in an ideal world I would

probably have these planned out for a

whole year and Vance but at the same

time with having that feedback it helps

you be responsive to what your audience

wants you know that's a good yeah

actually that's a great point because

you know yes in fact I think that may

even be one of the benefits of a medium

like this where I'm not trying to you

know book the San Diego Convention

Center a year in advance and figure out

how to get people you know driving

directions you know or things like that

or it's a whole lot of produce meaning I

could be a lot more agile in how in

terms of how I respond to the market I

think so and it sort of is it's in line

with the way that I think technology is

moving as a whole because you know it is

very fast-paced and even thinking about

the way that we interact with people

through social media we have to sort of

stay open and responsive to the things

that they're telling us sort of at the

speed that they're coming in so if we

are / if we're planning too far in

advance then we don't leave ourselves as

open for that kind of feedback so I

actually I like the way that it's going

but I think from but also from a

planning standpoint it is a lot to to

recruit large panels and you do have to

go through a lot of you know emailing

back and forth to get the people on

board so for me I use tools like doodle

to get people's availability and then

once I get their availability I just use

I just send know calendar invites and

that's pretty much it but I think the

availability could take a while ya know

actually that's a good point because the

coordination because the the event

virtual event production doesn't have to

take that much right

I mean since our organization does

virtual event production we produce

about 2,400 events a year I know what it

what goes into it but I also I realized

that there's a there's more that goes

into it than sometimes appears at first

blush right so to your point

yeah the coordination the

the cat herding sometimes it takes a bit

instead of curiosity and this literally

just did my I invited everybody to join

us for a cup of coffee and this is

literally off the top of my head but

it's kind of just thinking about that

amount of time planning an advanced

thing that we were just talking about

right you have some kind of lead time

for some types of panel discussions have

you contemplated not to put you on the

spot here but you're smart and you're

you're adept have you contemplated how

maybe you would use this medium where to

to respond to issues that are kind of

breaking like if some legislation you

know passes or changes or some incident

happens you have an organization very

clearly is on the on the leading edge of

thought leadership with regard to you

know in your case you know domestic

violence is there a way to have you

thought about using this medium and more

of kind of that market-responsive kind

of way you know gosh I hadn't I hadn't

thought of it in that way specifically

however I have thought of it to maybe do

some work more regionally because we are

a national organization we you know we

have members throughout the country so

maybe we could sort of host like

regional dialogues and these are I

thought about I'm not sure exactly

though how would you structure it but

it's something that's really on my mind

in terms of how can we engage people on

a regional level in in conversations

that are a little bit more specific to

their region potentially because I think

sometimes we don't get to we don't get

to get sort of deep enough into okay

well what's going on in my area as

opposed to the national how do we

address that yeah I mean yes actually

that's a great point because I think

about it and I do not want to even

pretend to have a you know to have any

depth of knowledge in your domain other

than that I know that the city where I

sit right here Portland Oregon happens

to have a significant sex trafficking

problem at Portland just for whatever

reason I've been told anyway has has a

significant issue in there and and

you're right so whether that was Pacific

Northwest or Portland OR Oregon or

wherever that kind of sub constituency

is yeah somebody somebody

within 200 miles me probably is going

hey yeah but there's this little way

that this affects me differently didn't

say somebody in Washington DC or Dallas

or whatever absolutely and I think you

speak to a good point there about how

you know like we are we as an

organization are really thinking more so

the reason why we do the webinars is to

is to be able to think more high-level

in terms of like on the thought

leadership level of like what's going on

in the in the field of domestic violence

thinking about emerging issues and being

able to respond to things in a timely

manner as they're going on but when you

get more specific into the

community-based work you know I think

that's where sort of the action can take

place so I think I think that there's

two different approaches there's one to

sort of inform yourself and learn but

then there's another another completely

different approach which has to do more

so with helping people move to action

right which I think if we come back to

kind of the framing question how could

we you know you and I have a discussion

that would help somebody who also is in

a nonprofit world a lot of nonprofits

have that similar kind of national and

local dichotomy and you probably

similarly have have both the need to

address things more broadly but then of

course locally sure I think well one

really awesome thing that I I do hear

pretty consistently about webinars

because this is also a newer space for

me but is that people appreciate the

opportunity to train without having to

leave their offices because because

sometimes in nonprofits we we tend to be

we tend to be working pretty near our

capacities oftentimes and I I would

imagine it's the same in the for-profit

world but I can speak to the nonprofit

world which is that most of us have you

know many many responsibilities so

sometimes leaving the office to go to a

training is it's challenging maybe that

might mean that the rest of your office

is short-staffed I've heard that a lot

from our membership and and it we

actually know that we did a survey of

our members in July of 2017 and they and

it indicated that webinars were the

number one reason why people become a

member

with our organization interesting let me

let me reflect that back to you to make

sure I just heard you correctly so at NC

a DV webinars are the number one

influencer that influences people to

become part of your organization or more

active with the organization did I get

that correctly yes so they have

indicated that the webinars are I will

let me just give you the verbatim

language because it's very interesting

because you know I just want to I just

want to make sure I'm speaking it

correctly to okay so the most important

benefits of membership are 72% said the

free webinars with the certificate of

participation 73% said that that's the

most important benefit of membership

interesting yeah so we know that that's

something that that our members are

looking to us to provide and so when

we're thinking about how we go about

providing them is being open to their

feedback but else and also thinking like

yes how can we position different topics

you know to be relevant with issues that

are going on more nationally and

intersectionally with other movements

that's important also to the way that we

do this work are you how are you

producing and distributing the

certificates of attendance yes and so I

actually just utilized the handouts that

are available in GoToWebinar there's an

opportunity where you can apply and out

and so I actually just use like a blank

handout this is a certificate where they

can just fill in their name and it says

the date and the time and it says the

topic and the speaker names and such got

it okay and so far one of the just

conversational here but one of the tools

that we have in our software is

something that Auto generates those with

people's names already in there and I

knew that go to our did not have that

feature so I was just curious if you

were like doing them all by hand and

actually you saved yourself that step

because you weren't necessarily

personalizing each of them before

distributing them so that answers that

question but actually that's that's a

great

of that though because if you think

about the nature of how we might walk

around in office right and the kinds of

stuff we put on our walls I'm in my

business partners office and there's a

picture of our team up behind us but you

know hanging up a certificate of

participation and says hey I spent some

time and investing on behalf of our

organization I went and did some

learning about this particular topic

okay I think is a critical part of

helping critical part of just how you

help others benefit from what it is that

you're doing so for you if you don't

mind just on that have you ever been

familiar with this concept of like

badging it's like you get a badge it's a

tech thing I think do you know about

that yes so broadly speaking that is my

my understanding is that that is found

most frequently in learning management

systems so the category of technology

which is an LMS or an lc/ms learning

content management system are our

systems where I can determine that not

only did Shiva you know register and

attend but then she here was the score

that she got on her quizzes or and

that's typically then where you can

string together or create learning

sequences where it's like I want you to

watch this video and then go take this

test and you it's gated so you don't get

to go to the next thing you don't get to

go to the next video until you've passed

the test for the first video that kind

of stuff right and badging tends to be

one of those kinds of things that says

here is a here is a digital or a virtual

hash mark that says whether either you

completed it or and they and the the

rise of that has been like out of like

people thinking in terms of gamification

okay yeah it was I didn't really know

much about but I was thinking to maybe

explore it and then another issue that

came up or not issue but just more more

feedback that's coming in to me about

the webinars was providing closed

captioning and I wonder if that was

something that you knew a little bit

about yes if you actually I have a blog

post about it from

just in the last couple months event

builder dot rocks but I'll say this

briefly closed captioning very broadly

fits into two categories one is what

what can machines do automatically right

and that tends to be the budget way but

things happen so like if you've ever

gone to YouTube one of the things that

you can see on a lot of videos on

YouTube is a transcript right yeah and

so that kind of thing is just generated

by machine it's not terribly accurate

but it's really cheap right so we the

way we do it is actually through the

what is the what's the big national

organization we actually go through the

big leading organization that when we do

transcript or closed captioning at for

our organizations for our clients

because that's one of the services that

we offer we actually do that with an

organization that has an individual join

so so they usually use machines to kind

of do the first pass but the real-time

stuff is actually moderated and managed

by a human being to make sure that it

cleans up especially in organizations or

industries say that have lingo that a

machine might might not translate well

that kind of thing yeah I don't remember

the name of the organization off the top

my head but you can find it on my blog

I'll check your blog yeah cuz I this is

just something that has come up in the

recent couple months of of doing

webinars monthly and I'm just you know

I'm being exposed to just things that I

hadn't thought about ethics set which is

I think it's really helpful to me just

to keep to stay aware of the different

tech side I'm the tech side what are the

resources and what are the trends so we

can make sure that what we're doing is

you know is working across the book yeah

so just out of curiosity you hit the

ground kind of running when when you

when you joined NC adv and and just out

of curiosity now that you've now that

you've you're a few months and a few

webinars down the road is there

something that you would if you were

kind of looking back over your shoulder

going if you were if somebody came to

you and go I am brand new

this my association does this and I've

never even done a webinar Sheba what

where should I even start

what would you say okay well I really

did find it helpful to have to have

someone to sort of bounce your ideas off

who does know the tech side of it so I

thought the conversation that we had was

very informative and then also the

training webinar just to like know your

tools I think that's probably a big

that's a takeaway from me is know know

what your tools can do beyond what you

think are the sort of basics like even

even just bringing in a webcam I think

was a little bit of a it was like a step

up and we we kept taking small steps

each time we incorporated polls we've

incorporated like the hand raised tool I

think all of these things can be looked

at as ways to help your audience feel

more engaged and feel more like they're

like they're there in real time with you

as opposed to you know watching

something on TV or watching a

presentation on a video or something

they feel like they're there right so I

think that's good I'm thinking about

thinking in advance about how you

structure your panel that's really big

making sure that you're not sort of over

over bringing in too many presenters

it's really helpful and I think the live

Q&A; are allowing for a Q&A; is really

awesome but thinking about how to do

that make sure you're planning for it

whether that's having another colleague

join you to moderate that or you're

moderating it I think yeah like when we

do it I moderate the questions then I

have another co-worker who does like the

tech side who can help me with them

advancing slides or pressing record or

sharing webcams or things like that

so that's really helped me that helps me

tremendously that's awesome I'm going to

put an exclamation point I love I love

how you shared this so I'm just gonna

repeat it for our audience because I

think there's a couple cool things that

Sheba pointed out I'm gonna use my

language but you so correct me if I

don't paraphrase what you just said

correctly but taking participants from

passive viewers to active participants

right you already mentioned earlier that

you know probably a good least a good

chunk of the people showing up to your

webinars are already activists in

some way right they're concerned they're

here to learn they're here because they

want to be involved and and you enabling

them to raise a hand or download

something or ask a question of this

federal agency or whatever it means that

they are actively participating and and

and that's what they're there for I mean

they're already Pro acting to show up so

I think that sounds like a really

awesome increase the making me feel like

I'm participating absolutely I agree and

that's that sort of had been my goal and

I really I didn't really know how to

accomplish that at the beginning when I

first learned about the tools because I

really I had only been a participant on

webinars but I also thought about okay

well of the ones that I've done have

never been any that I did feel like I

was more engaged in and I I had the

experience where I did have a couple of

good really good trainers that I had

seen on webinars and I do remember it

was even the little things like asking

them to raise their hand really did I

liked it that way I didn't sort of tune

out what was going on and that was more

engaged in it yeah and you know you said

something right at the very beginning of

when we just started this discussion -

which was and correct me if I if I

paraphrase you incorrectly here but it

was kind of like wrapping your head

around taking how you might think

through an in-person event and start to

take that and starting to map that to a

virtual event right how do you make

people feel welcome how do you make them

feel like they're participating and that

you see them in it and that they you

know you're glad that they're there as

opposed to somebody who you know nobody

would know if I went up to my television

and turned it off right yeah but in a

webinar you you can establish a

different personal connection you can

and I you know there on each one I'm

sort of learning as I go like for

example for my April one coming up I

have someone else moderating so I kind

of brought in a guest moderator

I feel pretty excited about it it's with

a from someone from the HuffPost which i

think is cool hopefully other people

agree that

school but she's going to be moderating

sort of on behalf of our agency so I'm

thinking okay well so how am I going to

sort of make her feel that she's leaving

this event and feel very like you know

that she has the tools that she needs

even though she's in a different city

she's I think in Orlando or something

like that so if there's always little

there's things that I have to sort of

navigate but I'm thinking okay well what

would I do for a moderator if I was in

an in-person event how would I make sure

that they feel comfortable we talked in

advance we sit we we kind of sit on the

phone together and plan out questions

and I think it's just those kind of

things what would you do if you were in

person trying to plan for an event like

that yeah I love I love your creativity

and love that that's and I and I think I

even said this back when you and I

originally spoke but but thinking about

this as a medium through which we can

connect and communicate and not thinking

about it as a format meaning that a

webinar has to be somebody talking over

PowerPoint for 45 minutes with a little

bit of Q&A; at the end right using it is

a medium to end like you mentioned that

turning even just getting webcams turned

on took a little bit of nudging yeah

right with the level of personalization

now think about the constituents that

you're serving and who go oh that's what

Professor so-and-so looks like oh yeah

the director of that agency that that

makes it real it does that little thing

actually I think makes such a big

difference and I you know since I

started doing it I haven't really had

any major you know pushback saying oh no

I won't use what everybody's open I for

the most part people are open to using

one and so that's great I think it's

sort of becoming more normal I think

these days to see that so that's good

I've got one more question as we kind of

maybe you know get closer to the end of

our cup of coffee here together but

instead of curiosity when you did

promotions or invitations was there

anything in particular that you learned

about tell us about the the promotional

aspect of how you got people to register

with jumpin on your web site email list

how'd you tackle it yep so we

we definitely take a multi-prong sort of

approach to that so I think that our

biggest when we do our surveys we

consistently see that people are mostly

hearing about our webinars via email so

we do like email blasts you know so we

but it's a specific a specific email

blast about the webinar and there's a

link to register right there so the way

that we do it because we have a member

we're member based so we have a

non-member rate and so people can just

click in and pay that or the members

they actually have a login they they log

in to a member portal to register and

there for free because it's kind of it's

a benefit of their membership so it so

we send out email blasts we also we have

a page dedicated to webinars on our

website I think it's a pretty good

traffic page because it's an important

thing people want to know what we're

doing and then we also do social media

so we have Instagram you have Twitter

and we also live tweet that's kind of a

new thing too I provide my

communications manager I get for all the

powerpoints or any of the slides in

advance and she can prep to do a lot of

live tweeting and that gives me another

metric or something to evaluate because

I I measure that as a part of the

engagement of the overall webinar are

people tweeting are viewable retweeting

and so I like I love you being able to

use Twitter in my metrics because it is

important social media is a driver of

engagement so we want to measure that

yes

I'm gonna push the pause button on that

I love that as well I had the good

fortune of doing having a lot of success

with Twitter in part because I did lots

of virtual presentations but just in

case anybody out there is listening and

going oh Twitter what what let me let me

encourage our audience of this video

that even if you don't aren't a big

Twitter user or you use it at all I'll

bet somebody in your office is or

somebody can be hired for probably

pretty modestly to do what Shiba was

just talking about with live tweeting

because one of the things that the

people at Twitter know and this is why

they have formed allegiances and

alliances with in the television

industry is that is that people sending

out tweets is one of the ways that

audiences feel connected to each other

while something's going on so somebody's

watching the Super Bowl or the

Bachelorette or something like that and

they're live tweeting right and that's

part of how two people out there who are

total strangers are sharing the

experience of that event right

so when Sheba talks about live tweeting

this I mean it only takes one influencer

out there who's paying attention to your

tweet to turn around and and share that

tweet back out with back out to their

audience to dramatically increase the

exposure for your cause which i think is

really powerful so she was really on to

something there absolutely so we we

noticed that that people are tending to

hear about our webinars either through

social media our email list or our

website but sometimes it's word-of-mouth

maybe a colleague is forwarding

something and or someone from another

agency is forwarding something to

another person so yeah those are those

tend to be the ways that people hear

about our webinars and it's been going

pretty well so far I think that the

recruitment and the promotional aspect

has been working yeah well yes but

you're also offering something of value

so give yourself your own a pat on your

back or I'll give you a pat on the back

if you're if your audience doesn't care

about the topic

oh and or the people the people on the

panel the reason they're showing up is

because you're creating value for them

so that's awesome so I think it kind of

speaking to that my March my March

webinar I did on International Women's

Day and then that's a that is a day it's

a specific day it was March 8th and I

did a webinar on that day I thought it

would be a great opportunity to pull

together you know a group of leading

organizations to talk about sort of the

global efforts to end domestic violence

so thinking about work work that's being

done internationally and that topic I

mean I won't say that it didn't resonate

but I will say it didn't give us our

highest return in terms of like a mouth

people that signed up so it's just

something interesting for me to know as

I'm thinking about topics like what

resonates with people more than other

you know and so as a planner knowing

knowing sort of had a cater your your

topics and your content to the audience

that you're working with yeah though

I'll I'll share this with you I mean you

still could

been on target with the topic yeah maybe

something about the day you know

possibility that that that you know you

were competing with other people who

also had activities going on and

therefore you were competing with for

mine share with feather you know with

other organizations maybe very well

could be that too and so I you know I

won't say oh I will not try that topic

again because it actually turned out to

be a really great webinar there was some

really good content as I was looking

through the presentation I was like wow

this is really going to be good you had

four panelists and all from very much

leading organizations doing work in

different areas of ending violence

against women globally and so I thought

they shared some really tremendous

insight and I also had very good

feedback from the presenters in they

felt great about being a part of it so

there's some wins there's some wins to

be had in those departments do

interesting well you know what it may be

too soon detail given that March 8th

wasn't that long ago but I would be

curious to know how if the recording

gets traction for you over time sure and

I love that I can track that too I can

go in and see how many people have

watched that recording at any time

that's I like that information just to

know what topics are people referring to

again you know and really using as like

a resource not just a so I think that's

cool because it's an event right and a

webinar as an event but it can also

become a resource for people which is

great which by the way I know I've

worked with organizations who did enough

quantities of webinars so that that very

metric like what you were just talking

about actually became its own form of

surveying or indicators right because if

I look back you know I know I know some

organizations that do a webinar a week

and right and now you look back over the

last six months and go oh why did that

topic get three times as many people go

into the recording is that topic yes

right you know roughly the same period

of time and you can start to go ah maybe

there's something there that I should

pay attention to maybe I need to do

another event or something that's a

derivation of that topic yes that kind

of happened a little bit on today's

webinar in the sense that we were

getting a lot of questions about

specific topic that we wasn't really

part of the agenda it really it wasn't

part of the objectives for the webinar

that we were doing at the time but it

helps us know okay gosh this is really

something people are interested in we

need to sort of act on that meaning okay

if we have another opportunity let's

either build that in like for example

our organization holds a conference so

we want to maybe think okay can we build

that in that content to help address

those questions that came in multiple

times during a webinar right so just in

case your parent you're still listening

just I want to point out something that

Shiba just said which is that paying

attention to the qualitative questions

that were being submitted gave her some

clues go right seeing some repetition in

terms of what questions were being asked

was another awesome form of data mining

for black of a better way of putting it

in terms of understanding your audience

well as you can tell from if you ever

read any of my blog posts about our

company and or even look at the picture

behind me 80 percent of our organization

is is ladies and in the technology

industry that's a big deal we're really

proud of the fact that we have women who

kick butt in tech here at builder and

shiba I want to thank you for for

sometime spending some time here please

let us know right in here and now how

people can learn more about the

organization connect with you on

LinkedIn or however it is you you know

the many ways that you would love for

them to to be able to reach out and

engage and get more from TV absolutely

so you can follow us on twitter at NC

ADV and across platforms also on

instagram at and CA DB and then on

facebook we are National Coalition

Against Domestic Violence I think any of

those resources would be a great place

to start in terms of knowing what's

going on with us but if you are like

even more interested you can go to our

website and sign up for our email

listserv and there are a lot of great

emails that go out in terms of as Roger

mentioned the advocacy piece so thinking

about how can you advocate on a local

level for the interests or needs of

domestic violence survivors so like how

can you call your local legislator and

talk to them about issues or send a

tweet on behalf of

organization to your local state rep or

something like that so check us out on

social media and we really appreciate

this opportunity to talk more about our

webinars well I think you for just

sitting down or a cup of coffee and and

Sharon Sharon what it is that you're

doing just say for last question is are

there any questions you wish I would

have asked you that I didn't I think

there was one more thing that I just

kind of wanted to say that I got note of

our initial conversation was you made a

suggestion to me and I actually did it

and I felt like it was kind of cool so

you suggested maybe that I take a

webinar and then break it up break up

the recording so I could send it out to

each individual panelist and I did that

for one of the webinars I haven't done

it for all of them but those people

really appreciated that so that was

really out of the box I hadn't thought

of that as a way to make a webinar sort

of a value-add for not only the people

that you're serving and your audience

but also the panelists or the people who

you're asking to be on with you ranking

that as on their YouTube channel or

something like that so added bonus I

remember haven't they I totally forgot

about that as a guy who spent a lot of

years being a just a full time

professional speaker getting a piece of

video from an event that you spoke at

was something turn around and put on

your own like you say you your own

YouTube channel or in your own website

because it's part of how people can get

to know you so Sheba thank you again for

for spending a little bit of time and

sharing a cup of coffee with us we

really appreciate all you're doing to

help us think critically about our how

we're hosting webinars really helpful

well everybody my name again Roger

Coralville at event builder and we if

you have any questions or things that

you'd like to see us do we'd be happy to

do that if you just send us an email let

us know how we can better serve you

thanks

 

Topics: Case Studies, Content, Delivery, Expert Interviews, gotowebinar, NCADV, Online vs. Offline, panel discussions, Strategy, Tools and Tips, webinars

Roger Courville

Written by Roger Courville

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