Q&A: What if your content is experiential?

Another good question from a recent webinar:  Arpad P. asked

What if your content is experiential..how can you get that across?

Arpad, I think it depends on “experiential.”

The medium affects how the communication happens, right?  It affects how we communicate to our audience and vice versa.  And frankly, some experiences don’t translate well into webinars.

The most obvious failure would be any form of tactile manipulation.  You can’t take a motor apart and put it back together online.

But you might be able to teach some of the concepts about taking it apart and reassembling it.

You could break the audience up into smaller discussion groups, give them each a problem, and ask them to come back to share their ideas.

Here are (briefly) the five steps I recommend:

1.  Get clear on your goal/outcomes

2.  Think through the communications and behaviors you’d normally walk your audience through and evaluate your tradeoffs

3.  Design an initial map/design of those communications and behaviors to the web conferencing solution tools/options you have (or are considering sourcing)

4.  Develop your content (storyboards, graphics, et al)

5.  Implement and evaluate

Note that depending on the scope of your project or presentation, evaluation might be as simple as an end-of-event survey or as complex as an organizational return-on-investment analysis.

Finally, one thought on “evaluating your tradeoffs.”  It’s most common for people to instantly get what they “lose” relative to presenting in person, but there are also many gains that go beyond just saving a plane ticket.  It’s not a ‘right or wrong,’ but because nothing is ever perfect, you’re always weight cost-benefit.  Just don’t sell yourself short by not fully evaluating all your tradeoffs.

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