Do you frequently work as a webinar moderator? Or are you planning to start your first time as a moderator in a webinar? Follow these 8 practical tips from our project manager Pascal Langen on how to be a good webinar moderator.
How to be a good moderator
A moderator plays an ever important role prior and during a webinar. One of the most important tasks for a webinar moderator is managing the chat and being the first to see the incoming questions. You’ll have to decide if you can answer the questions yourself right away or if you need to forward them to the webinar presenter. Another task is making sure all participants have the correct instructions for attending the webinar and as a moderator you’ll have to make sure the presenter of the webinar is ready to go. The role of a moderator is multifaceted so Pascal has come up with these 8 practical tips for webinar moderation.
1. Prepare yourself to be a successful webinar moderator
Effective preparation is crucial for any webinar moderator. To ensure a smooth experience for both the moderator and the participants, it’s important to establish clear guidelines and protocols in advance. As a webinar moderator, one of the key steps is to send out instructions and a manual to all participants 24 hours before the event, including important information on software requirements and technical support.
When it comes to the number of moderators needed, it’s recommended to have at least one moderator for every 50 participants. This ensures that any technical issues can be addressed quickly and efficiently. However, with the use of our self service webinar software , the need for a dedicated technical moderator is eliminated.
Webinar moderator tips:
- Establish clear guidelines and protocols in advance
- Send out instructions and a manual to all participants 24 hours before the event
- Have at least one moderator for every 50 participants
2. Login on time and check in with webinar presenters before the event
Nothing is more annoying than a webinar which has already started while you are still starting up your computer. Pascal: “as a webinar moderator, you have an important role because all the questions come to you first. So make sure you are ready on time. I always advise moderators to log in half an hour in advance. If there is something wrong with your computer, you’ll have plenty of time to fix it. This way you don’t get any stress.”
“And make sure you and the webinar presenter are aligned before the webinar starts. Share some useful information together and your role is to make the presenter at ease. You can share some background info on participants, the anticipated length of the webinar and whether participants have already submitted questions ahead of time.”
3. Write a welcome message at the start of the webinar
Sending out a welcome message at the start of a webinar is an important step for a webinar moderator. It helps to set the tone for the event and establishes a professional and organized atmosphere. A welcome message can include important information such as the agenda for the webinar, the speaker’s credentials, and any necessary technical instructions. Additionally, a welcome message can be used to introduce and engage with the participants, making them feel more comfortable and connected to the event. By sending out a welcome message, the moderator is able to establish a clear and effective communication with the participants, which will help to create a more productive and successful webinar experience.
Another way to get the participants actively involved is to incorporate polls at the start and during the webinar. Polls allow participants to actively participate in the webinar, rather than just passively listening. This can increase their focus and attention, as well as their sense of investment in the topic.
4. Make a list of answers from questions you can expect
“Are there any obvious questions you can expect? Then write your answers down in advance. It takes some extra time to formulate them concisely; answers in the chat need to be a lot shorter than in an email. This saves you a lot of time during the webinar so you can focus on other tasks. During popular and demanding webinars this is no unnecessary luxury.”
5. Make your answers personal
“By greeting someone personally, you make them feel comfortable. if, for example, David asks a question, make it personal by starting your answer with ‘Dear David’. Always end a message by saying goodbye and then give your own name.”
6. Forward questions to the webinar presenter if there is time to answer them
Pascal says: “It makes a webinar much more interactive when the presenter answers live questions. When there is an opportunity, we always recommend answering relevant questions during a webinar”. Of course, not every question lends itself to being picked up during the webinar. “If it is something technical, or if the question has already been asked, you deal with it behind the scenes. Usually at the end of a webinar there is a quarter of an hour to answer questions anyway.”
7. Be honest if you don’t know the answer
Webinar participants always expect to get an answer quickly. So respond as soon as possible. Sometimes you don’t know the answer yourself, or it takes a bit longer to respond as you would like to. tell them honestly that you have to figure it out and that you will come back to it, preferable within the timeframe of the webinar. Otherwise suggest responding to their message after the webinar. Don’t ignore a difficult question, that can be annoying for the person who asks it.”
8. Prepare some questions
Another tip to prepare yourself to be a successful webinar moderator is to have ample knowledge of the subject matter so you can answer questions in depth. It prepares you for the likely incoming questions so you can answer them quickly during the webinar itself. The webinar presenter has probably created a script by which he or she presents the content of the webinar. Make sure you’ll have a copy of the webinar script so you can prepare yourself for possible incoming questions.
“Sometimes no questions come in, which can kill the interaction during a webinar. Therefore, I always advise you to prepare some questions yourself, just to be sure. You can drop these in when appropriate and this often stimulates participants to ask a question themselves.”
In conclusion, being a successful webinar moderator takes a bit of preparation and effort. But by following these eight practical tips, you can ensure that your webinars run smoothly and effectively. Firstly, make sure to prepare yourself by familiarizing yourself with the webinar’s topic and materials, as well as the platform you will be using. Secondly, log in on time and check in with the webinar presenters before the event. This will help you to anticipate any potential issues and ensure that everything runs smoothly.
Thirdly, write a welcome message at the start of the webinar to set the tone and provide important information for the participants. Fourthly, make a list of answers for questions you can expect, so you can respond quickly and effectively. Fifthly, make your answers personal and engaging, to build a connection with the participants. Sixthly, forward any questions to the webinar presenter if there is time to answer them, to make sure that the participants get all the information they need.
Seventhly, be honest if you don’t know the answer, and let the participants know that you will find out and get back to them. Finally, prepare some questions in advance, to keep the conversation flowing and the participants engaged.
By following these tips, you can become a great webinar moderator and create an interactive, engaging and effective webinar experience for your audience.
If you follow these simple steps you can create an amazing engaging webinar on the Online Seminar Self Service platform. So why don’t you give it a try.