June 26, 2012


maskThis can't be the reaction they intended.

I got invited to a webinar on a boring topic (computer security). The speaker has impressive credentials ... and sells security-related services. No surprise. The presentation probably shows us all the things we're doing wrong and offers solutions ... for a price.

Normally, you get sales pitches for free with refreshments as bait. This hour-long webinar costs $25.

Where is the money going?

The speaker is probably free. Running a webinar costs very little:
All these options are cheaper than renting a room and buying nice cookies. Perhaps the host organization is raising money or creating an impression of value by charging.

Google Says

Too often, technical speakers have content which is dull and overly-complicated. The delivery may be less than riveting ...

I did a web search for the speaker, expecting to find an impressive digital tapestry. As a minimum, I thought there would be media mentions, a blog and tweets. I was hoping for a live clip from an actual presentation. Instead, the only information available is from the speaker. That's not credible.

There are warning signs on LinkedIn
  • no photo
  • little detail
  • no recommendations given or received
Google also shows that this speaker does free webinars on this topic.
free for others

"Free" Offer

The first 25 tickets to the new event are free but the registration form shows no free option. Apparently you pay and get a refund later if you qualify. That’s unsatisfying.

A cynic might conclude there are two outcomes
  1. free for all: everyone is free (there’s no real cost for an extra attendee)
  2. all paid: everyone pays since there were no "free" tickets in the first place
It's easy enough to have tickets in different classes with different prices and quantities. You can with Eventbrite and Meetup.

There’s probably nothing underhanded in the ticket selling process. The speaker might be reasonably good. Even so, would you bother with the webinar even if free?

Your Clients

You might not evaluate speakers the same way but is my process completely crazy? (You're free to leave a comment below.)

Your potential clients evaluate you in their own ways. They may not even notice how. Yet they make decisions.

You can't tell how clients will find you or what they'll value. Since time and attention are limited, the first impression could last mere seconds. The safe solution is to be easy to find and have stuff worth finding.


PS What’s your decision process?

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the good tips provided here! I agree that we have to have an action plan in place before making the offer and we should be sure about it…
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