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Joe Talent

Good idea to ask what participants don't care about - often this is easier for them to identify.

It's a tactic often used in PR to 'trial balloon' certain ideas/



Nice post, Steve. I agree with Joe about what they don't care about. Talk about getting great targeted info to make the presentation relevant and successful.

We did some fee-based, best practices-loaded webinars a few years ago and a related tip I would add that worked well for us was to call the co-presenters (we used some outside CEO experts in addition to our staff). This sounds like a no-brainer, but based on what I've personally seen in both free and fee-based sessions, I generally don't think there's enough coordination between the host and the outisde talent (when that's the case and it's not presented with only in-house talent). We call to explain the process, key dates, and clarify expectations; later to check in on their material and answer questions (usually a key concern was going over time); again the day before or day of, mainly to resolve any last-minute technical issues but also to touch base again and be supportive; and finally, right after the session to get their positive and negative feedback (would they be our partner again for another session in the future?).

Steve Roesler


Yes, the trial balloon is a useful idea to see who's shooting at it and what ammunition they're using. Then, readjust.

Steve Roesler


That's a winner and, from one on the other end, a model much appreciated by the presenters.

I do lot of online presentations and literally just got off the phone making arrangements with someone who handles it in the professional manner that you do at your organization. This is the fourth time I've worked with them and between the upfront time spent and the feedback right after, we've worked well together to hit the expectations and stretch a bit the next time out.

Thanks for taking time to lay out your process. Online event organizers, take heed!

Melissa P

Thanks for sharing this post. It's very important to understand the client's expectations. So often this is overlooked as presentations tend to focus on what the presenter has to offer instead of what the client is really looking for. A great reminder!!

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