Basics of a Webinar Producer’s Job

By Sharat Sharan, John Carucci

If you enjoy puzzles, thrive on making a whole from the sum of parts, or bringing order to chaos, the role of webinar producer will fit you like a custom-made glove. Making it all come together is what a webinar producer does every time. Perched atop the planning universe, the producer plots the course for the webinar, dodges obstacles, and puts out fires along the way.

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Whether you’re bold enough to do it yourself or you’re looking for a service to run your company’s next online session, the producer creates the entire event. Responsibilities include doing everything necessary for putting the webinar together, from getting leads for potential registrants and writing the script to marketing the session and running it. In addition, the producer leads the team and can even moderate.

Every aspect of the webinar falls under this title. The producer makes all kind of decisions, including things like deciding exactly when to broadcast the webinar for maximum potential. (Believe it or not, there is a prime time for a webinar broadcast. That’s something that’s often goes unnoticed, yet it can determine the success of running a webinar. See the “Timing is everything” sidebar for more on that.)

The producer needs to take all of the components of the show — the topic, talent, and platform provider — and cohesively produce the webinar piece-by-piece. That responsibility includes getting leads on potential registrants, marketing the webinar, and then actually making sense of the webinar in the best way to tell the story. Keep in mind that all this usually needs to happen in a relatively short amount of time.

Sometimes a webinar producer acts as a “gun for hire,” working for external clients. For example, a company may be familiar with running webinars, but not with the service or software, so a provider can supply a producer to the company’s team to help. That producer would be contracted out.

So to recap, the responsibilities of the producer include

  • Planning the webinar: Holds meetings in the early stages to flesh out ideas and translate them to presentation.

  • Putting the team together: Selects the speakers, guests, and support staff, and trains them, if necessary.

  • Marketing the webinar: Gets the word out to potential participants using e-mail, social media, and other marketing techniques.

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  • Uploading the presentation: Makes sure that presentation is uploaded correctly into the webinar host software and that all the pieces are present and correct, such as software settings and widgets. The producer also makes sure that any extra plug-ins or features (polls, surveys, and so on) are all pointing to the right places. All this TLC makes the user experience as smooth as possible.

  • Moderating if necessary: Sometimes the producer moderates the webinar; other times, the producer finds the right person for the job.