Networking Strategies to Get the Most Out of Your Webinars: Guide for Hosts and Attendees

Aditi Biswas
• September 6, 2021
Looking for ways to network in a webinar? Here are some quick tips.
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Networking webinars are critical for business growth and learning. They help you strengthen your business connections and build long-term relationships. Meaningful interaction in live networking webinars can help you get fresh ideas and perspectives. Active networking also helps in career development, as it helps you gain knowledge, stay updated, improve visibility and build confidence.   

While the benefits of attending virtual networking events are evident, providing networking opportunities as an event host might not always be equally evident. Even as an event participant, networking might feel awkward if you do not know the right time or way to network. 

This guide will help solve these challenges and make networking webinars effective. It will let hosts create such opportunities at webinars and guide attendees to leverage these opportunities.

Table of Contents

How to create and leverage networking opportunities in webinars?

Hosting B2B networking webinars can be beneficial for organizations in a number of ways –

  • They help in identifying and generating leads
  • They help in establishing brand authority and awareness
  • They improve reach
  • They drive deeper customer engagement and helps upsell

This blog lists the networking opportunities during each phase of a webinar to help you make the most of these benefits. 

Pre-event networking opportunities

Brand your networking webinars

Event personalization features can make a huge difference in networking webinars. For instance, Fintech Circle was able to customize its stage, booths, and tables to meet its brand guidelines. It enhanced their outreach and attracted around 700 attendees from the industry for their book launch webinar and networking event.

The right branding personalizations allow the host to attract relevant audiences and make meaningful connections.

Allow detailed profile building

As a host, you should choose one of the best webinar platforms that allow attendees to add detailed professional information while registering for your event. When you use Airmeet, attendees are required to fill up a form with professional details like name, designation, interest, and expertise. This profile building allows attendees to introduce themselves better, reach out to others, and highlight social profiles and interests to network efficiently.

Backstage

The backstage is an exclusive space in Airmeet, where speakers and hosts can interact before going live. Hosts can prep their speakers and do dry-runs. It provides the perfect opportunity for hosts to interact with speakers who are otherwise difficult to reach. These organic conversations can create deeper, more meaningful connections. 

Social Lounge

Once your attendees have signed in to your event, they have to wait in the pre-event social lounge area. This social lounge in a networking webinar is a great place to mix and mingle with other attendees. 

As a host, allow time in the social lounge so attendees on the same table can video conference with each other, view profiles of co-attendees, connect over common interests, and forge relations beyond the webinar. Attendees can move around from one table to another and maximize networking.

Speed Networking

Hosts can enable this powerful and innovative way to network before the event. Airmeet’s speed networking feature allows attendees to meet new people one-on-one quickly. Through this AI-powered matchmaking, attendees get matched with each other for 5-minute meetings.

Attendees can continue to speed network with new matches and make new connections while the networking session is enabled. It can prove to be an excellent ice-breaker for attendees.

Networking opportunities during the live session

Interact with other attendees in the chat

When you host a networking webinar on Airmeet, you get the opportunity to find out what everybody is thinking via interactive chats. On Airmeet, hosts can encourage group chats to drive more engagement and interactions during a webinar. For better management and communication, hosts can assign a moderator. 

Attendees can also use chats to share their contact details or drop some words of wisdom to showcase expertise. Attendees can also connect with other attendees of similar interest via direct chats and make deeper connections.

Allot time for follow-up questions

Allotting time for the audience to ask follow-up questions at the end of the webinar helps create an easy flow of communication. It is an excellent way to network with the speaker and hosts who are otherwise difficult to access. Raise-hand and Invite-to-stage can help you get the spotlight and increase visibility during the webinar. 

Share your business cards

The number of contact cards exchanged is an important metric to measure the success of networking efforts for a participant. Much like in-person events, Airmeet enables you to exchange virtual contact cards. Through contact details, whether you are a host, a speaker, or an attendee, you can connect post-event with the people that you believe will be good professional connections. 

Post-event networking opportunities

Post-event lounge

Every networking webinar should end with a post-event lounge session for attendees, speakers, and hosts to mingle. It provides the perfect opportunity to discuss various ideas that have been shared in the webinar and collaborate on ideas.

During AllThingsConnected’s knowledge-sharing and networking webinar, the post-event social lounge networking was highly appreciated by all attendees. nlike pre-event networking, post-event lounges are bustling with ideas and unique POVs, just like a live seminar.

Best practices for networking webinars - for hosts

Align your webinar agenda with networking

When you are hosting webinars, make sure you allocate time for networking and clearly communicate it to your attendees. Allocate time before, during, and after the event, as each one solves a different purpose. Pre-event networking acts as an ice-breaker, during the event networking, it helps discuss the topic at hand, and post-event networking it can open doors for new ideas and projects.

Add ice-breaker sessions

Conducting ice-breaker sessions before your speakers start can help attendees loosen up and interact uninhibitedly with others. Host fun and effective ice-breakers, keeping in mind your attendees’ demographics and group size.

Create engaging and interactive content

Every host looking to conduct a successful web seminar must make their content engaging and interactive. It allows attendees to communicate more effectively during sessions and in between. 

Best practices for networking webinars - for attendees

Build profile completely for optimum networking

As an attendee, you should spend some time building your webinar profile while registering on the webinar landing page. Other attendees can view your profile when they hover over your contact in the participant list. Building your profile ensures that you attract relevant connections in the Social Lounge and during Speed Networking in the networking webinar.

Cover as many tables as possible in the social lounge

As an attendee, you should spend some time building your webinar profile while registering on the webinar landing page. Other attendees can view your profile when they hover over your contact in the participant list. Building your profile ensures that you attract relevant connections in the Social Lounge and during Speed Networking in the networking webinar.

Join with a functional mic and camera

It is impossible to utilize the networking opportunities without a functional microphone and camera. Therefore, do not forget to double-check your device to help you interact during the virtual event seamlessly.

Need help setting up your networking webinar? Contact [email protected] or visit our 24*7 Support Lounge.

Frequently asked questions

The word “webinar” is derived from “web” + “seminar”. A webinar is a live, interactive virtual event meant for sharing knowledge, discussing, and networking. Webinars can be used by B2B companies at every stage of their sales funnel. It can help generate leads, drive conversions, improve brand awareness, boost engagement, and more.

Networking at a live webinar is no different than a physical event. Networking webinars provide ample opportunities throughout the virtual event. These opportunities can be categorized according to the three phases of the event. Pre-event opportunities include lounge table networking, exchanging contact cards, backstage interactions, and speed networking. Webinars also allow opportunities during the session like live chat, raise-hand, and direct message. Hosts and attendees can also choose to network post-event in the social lounge. 

A webinar is hosted on a virtual event hosting platform. It enables a speaker to share via presentation, screen share, or live feed. To humanize webinars, Airmeet offers deep interaction and engagement features like raise-hand, invite to the stage, chatbox, polls, and emojis. It also enables networking at webinars with features like social tables, speed networking, and more.

Airmeet automatically records your sessions and makes them available as soon as you end the session. It provides unlimited cloud storage for your session recordings so that you don’t have to worry about space or security.

You can create such opportunities by hosting networking webinars and using lounge features, live chat, and webinar branding. The best way is to host your virtual event on one of the best webinar platforms like Airmeet and leverage deep interaction and unique networking features like speed networking and backstage. 

You can facilitate networking at a virtual event by encouraging people and allocating time for interaction, pre, and post-event lounge sessions. Features like speed networking allow attendees to connect via an AI-powered matching algorithm. It makes for a great ice-breaker, and the networking remains swift. 

Networking is one of the primary objectives of any virtual event or b2b webinar. These events allow you to create more brand awareness and get leads, which becomes easier with a networking plan. Attendees also get more value and grow through these networking opportunities.

When you attend a webinar, you can network by interacting with fellow participants on social tables, speed networking, sharing your contact card, interacting on Chatbox, and asking questions. 

To conduct an effective networking session, you can follow the below agenda-

  •  Pre-event speed networking at the social lounge
  • Ice-breaker games
  • Value-driven and engaging content that promotes interactions 
  • Q&A session
  •  Post-event networking 

You can network post a webinar by interacting in the Airmeet social lounge. You can also reach out to your new connections on their social media.

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