Do you shake hands at the back of the virtual room?

One part of an in-person experience is the content, to be sure.

Another significant part, however, is the interpersonal connection that happens before or after the presentation or class itself.

Unfortunately, too many webinars and webcasts miss that experience.

But they don’t have to.

It doesn’t have to be complicated. Personal email, Twitter, online forums or chat rooms, or even just hanging out in the web conference after the webinar for more questions and discussion.

The question on the table is, “If it’s important to connect with your prospects or conference attendees at an in-person conference, shouldn’t you sometimes make an attempt to make real connections with real people when you’re online, too?”


3 thoughts on “Do you shake hands at the back of the virtual room?

  1. Mike

    I vouch that you are the master at this, Roger!

  2. Cindy

    We are incorporting “Time to Chat” at the end of a webinar. In trying to provide advice on how to facilitate chat time, what do you recommend? We have considered unmuting everyone who stays on and seeing what happens and also asking participants to raise their hands and running it more like a press conference.

    I recommend your blog to ALL of my presenters! You are a master! Thanks, Cindy

    1. TheVP

      Thanks for the kind words Cindy and Mike.

      Cindy, I think you nailed it when you used the simile “like a press conference.”

      When working with presenters, I always start with, “Tell me what you do when you’re doing an in-person event/seminar/speech/class.” Then one of two things happens…either we set out to adapt that to the online environment, or I figure out that they need a little coaxing and coaching to get there.

      As for opening up all the audio lines, that depends a lot on how many people are still on the line. While I love the openness, it doesn’t take very many attendees on the line before you end up with some unwanted noise that sends you scrambling for muting/unmuting.

      The other key word you used was “facilitate.” In a way, this is no different than an in-person event where you have an emcee or facilitator who either rocks (or doesn’t) because of their skill in asking insightful questions, drawing out insightful questions, and helping everyone feel comfortable with participating.

      In sum: Get a skilled facilitator, and adapt to the tools at hand.



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