TechSmith Tips – Getting Started with Video Webinars

What is a Webinar?

Webinar is the infinitely clever portmanteau of web and seminar. There are a number of ways to host a webinar, but most often they are live events that either inform or train the audience with the opportunity for the audience to provide input via chat.

How we use Webinars

At TechSmith we use video webinars for a number of purposes: in-depth demonstrations of our more complicated products, highlighting the success of our customers, a few times we even stayed up for 24 hours straight for our 24 in 24 and 48 in 24 video series.

But we like to think the factor that sets our Webinars apart is our use of camera video. A lot of webinars simply show a set of slides with the presenter’s disembodied voice over the top. Our setup allows the audience to see the presenter, it allows the presenter to show off live demos in the studio, and creates a more engaging experience for the viewers overall.

The Value

While setting up the system for live streaming video can be complicated and pricey, we’ve found it to be well worth the investment of time and money. That being said, the system we use is on the lower end of what’s possible and still costs well over $1000. A setup like this is recommended for companies or individuals who have a comprehensive marketing plan for their webinars. Building an audience ahead of any live streaming is vital.

Our Setup and Recommended Tools

This episode of TechSmith Tips demonstrates what equipment we use for live webinars. It does not go into the nitty-gritty of setting up streaming software or hosting, so there are additional resources below the video if you’re interested in learning more. Good luck!

Can’t see the embedded video? Watch it on YouTube.

 

A sample of our setup:

set up 2

Equipment:

  • Camera (with HDMI output, DSLR not recommended)
  • Microphone system (XLR output)
  • Audio Board (XLR inputs, USB output. Behringer brand recommended)
  • Computer (CPU, RAM, and Disk speed should be as beefy as possible)
  • Wirecast Software
  • Ustream account

Help: