By Chris Consorte November 15, 2007

Got a great product or service – and all that’s standing between you and major success is getting in-front of a few corporate decision-makers? You’re not alone – and your job is getting more difficult every day.

Today’s decision-making executives are busier than ever. They’re multi-tasking, wearing more than a few hats on-the-job, and the last thing they want to do is spend hours of their time traveling to a seminar that may or may not be beneficial to them.

Enter the “Webinar” – A virtual meeting that mixes the best technologies of telecommunications and Internet presentations. Think of a big conference call, where all your b2b prospects are on the phone line with you as well as following along with your online Powerpoint presentation.

Webinars offer businesses most of the benefits of an actual meeting, sans the traditional handshake – and costly lunches. Cost-savings with Webinars are significant – because both prospect and presenter no longer need to leave the office!

To get started, all you need to do is put together your Powerpoint presentation. Don’t get too fancy with your graphics because your webinar “attendees” web browser may not be able to support those kinds of extras. Keep it simple. You want to be pro-active in limiting any potential technical problems.

Now that you have your basic presentation ready, you simply need to enlist the help of a Webinar firm. There are dozens of companies out there, who are ready and willing to help you connect with your target audience. Some of these firms charge by the minute for both phone use and Internet time, but in my experience I’ve never paid more than $10 per hour – per attendee.

With the above said, if you had 10 attendees and the entire session went on for one hour, it’d roughly cost you $100. That same $100 would not even cover the cost of a lunch with one prospect in most places – let alone 10.

The Webinar company will provide you with a meeting place in the form of a website. They will also provide you with log-ins and passwords, in advance, for you to e-mail to your potential attendees. Logging in for all parties takes less than a minute.

Best of all, once you have presented your webinar, you can then engage your attendees in a question and answer session. They can pose questions, in real-time, through either instant chat or through the phone.

If you’re looking for a cost-effective way to get your message out to decision-makers, forget seminars. Neither you, or your prospects, have the time or desire to spend their time out of the office. Try conducting a Webinar in 2006. Your wallet and your prospects will thank you.

Chris Consorte has spent his entire career working on various marketing and new media projects on both the agency and client-side of business. He is also a regular columnist for Inc. Magazine.

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