A dry run is a critical step when planning to deliver a successful webcast. It ensures speakers are prepared and confident for the live day by giving them the opportunity to test their location, equipment, and become familiar with the webcasting software used to run the webcast.
Keep reading to learn seven tips to perfect the webcast dry run!
1. Practice. Practice. Practice.
Speakers should be able to give their presentations without having to look at each slide. Practicing multiple times allows the speaker to be able to make better eye contact with the camera (the audience) rather than the content and gives them the confidence to take and pose questions throughout the duration of the webcast.
2. Create “Seed Questions” for Q&A
Sometimes audience members can be slow or nervous to type in questions. Prepare 3-5 questions the speakers are comfortable answering in case they need to get the ball rolling. These questions may spark an idea in the audience and help them to ask their own questions.
3. Know What’s Expected of You
Understand what is needed for the live day. This includes knowing how long the session should be, how much time should be left for questions, the must include and avoid topics, what time to arrive on the live day, etc. Knowing well in advance what is expected from you will help you to prepare and have all the moving components in place when you practice and during the live day.
4. Know The Audience
Tailor the presentation to the audience and present at their level. If speakers are unsure of the audience’s knowledge level, prepare a polling question early on and prepare to adapt to their responses. Having a good idea of the audience will help you to deliver information that is more meaningful and will help everyone to get the most out of the webcast.
5. Know The Plan
Understand the webcast technology, flow of the session, how to change slides, pass the microphone (if needed), answer questions and participate in the chat. Being familiar with the webcast platform will help you navigate within the environment more smoothly on the live day.
6. Practice Contingency Plans
Prepare backup plans in case of audio/video malfunction, loss of connection to the internet, or other scenarios that may arise while presenting. It’s important speakers understand what could happen and have a backup plan to keep the webcast on track. The last thing you’d want is to have attendees drop out of the presentation because of technical difficulties.
7. Use Same Location/Equipment
To ensure a proper test of delivery, the speaker should be in the same location, using the same equipment, on the same network that will be used for the live day. This aims to simulate a live presentation and get comfortable with your surroundings, the technology, and content.
When prepping for a webcast, the dry run should be set up as close to the live day as possible, incorporating the actual location, technology, and content.
Being properly prepared for a successful webcast requires a lot of pre-planning and practice. Following these seven tips will help you get ready for your dry run and, ultimately, your next live webcast.