In the past years, putting together the increase of internet bandwidth supporting high definition instant live video streaming, the increasing capacities of server streaming for thousands of people, together the price falling for hardware technology, internet access (even on mobile devices), and data centers services, more and more learning companies develop business models centered on webinars in multiple formats which promise to deliver some free information to the watchers/listeners and some sort of attractive special offer.
In my experience, such webinars can be somewhere between money-making & life-changing to an utter waste of time listening to some charlatan’s bogus.
Specific programs facilitate access to various learning workshops providing practical blueprints with videos, audio, workbooks, transcripts, forms, procedures, tables, and so on.
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Of course, many people might be convinced to spend some time with this stuff, but I’m going to give you some suggestions about how to not lose too much time while also getting the most out of such opportunities. First, what you might not know about most of these:
- Most webinars are promised to last a certain amount of time. They usually last double, but if you stay until the end, you may find a genuine offer with a special discount.
- Many programs offered for hundreds of dollars can be found on the same website with a significant special discount, such as just a few tens of dollars or even just $1. But, of course, if you don’t know how to look for it or don’t at least try to close the page and see if you are tempted at that moment with a lower offer, you get taxed more. For example, I participated in a webinar where they were selling a course for $279, and I found it at $1 while browsing the web for it during the webinar. Another program was offered at $999 and was later offered for $50 after a month for those who didn’t buy it initially.
- What you learn can make you a lot of money and change your life IF you apply those things. But, basically, when you subscribe to a webinar, you find out that there’s about 80% promotion and 20 % content because a webinar is essentially a 2-3 hour-commercial
- If you subscribed to the webinar and bothered appearing just for 5 minutes, most trainers will send you the replay to watch/listen to whenever you want to, for example, on your dumbphone. This is an excellent and practical idea, wildly if you are not convinced you want to buy whatever that person is selling you. But, at the same time, it must be said that by doing so, you are guaranteed to miss the time-limited offer at the end of the webinar.
- Theoretically, you can ask some questions during the live webinar. Still, there are chances that from thousands of people attending and hundreds asking questions, yours wouldn’t be answered unless they are perfect and posted multiple times or by different people.
- Many have nothing to do with the advertised subject; they are just a bunch of shitty hocus-pocus new-age mind babble since “The Secret”. I thought people grew up and overcame that fashion. However, there are still thousands of suckers hoarding in thinking that through visualization, they will mind-bend the universe.
- The most practical things I found are entrepreneurship, marketing, and social media-oriented content that practically show you how to organize a business around consulting and training. I suggest you take some of those things, apply them, and share them with your customers.
- When the topic is not oriented on something concrete about business or sales, there are some things to be taken from the amount of psychobabble, but it must be clearly discerned, and that takes very much time. So be prepared to take some notes and not get bored with the rest of the content, which might be confusing or useless. On the other hand, watching/listening to a webinar DOES require some present and active knowledge about the topic. Otherwise, you might just believe everything the presenter is saying, which can be very dangerous in most cases.
- All the payments must also be made through PayPal or ClickBank. If the page you are directed to only obligates you to buy with your card, something might be wrong. Before deciding to buy, check the name of the program being advertised together with “scam”, “fraud” or “hoax” together. See what you find. Some of this stuff is just pyramidal schemes, working on the principle: step 1. give something small and valuable, step 2. make people think there is more 3. repeat steps 1 &2 indefinitely until the buyers run out of money.
- If you are smart and know a little bit more about the subject, you can implement some valuable ideas without buying the whole program. Or you could use the presentation as a model and learn from the selling skills of the presenter and use them in your own experience.
- Whatever the topic of interest is, you may find free recorded and valuable webinars on video.google.com. Also, look for similar issues in MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses). You might get equal or better content for free. Find some MOOCs appropriate for you by searching with customized keywords here: https://www.mooc-list.com/
- The most serious and well-planned online training offers access to a closed community, usually on Facebook, where you can interact with other participants and trainers, ask questions and create business opportunities. This is one of the most important features if you have time to access it.
- Find out if there is a return policy. Usually, there is something like if you don’t like what you find, you get a full or partial refund in 7 or 10 days, so hurry up and check if you want what you saw. If not, get your money back! Usually, the process takes a few days, so don’t last until the last days because even if you send the request within time, if it’s not processed, you might lose the money you want to get back. Some companies retain something like 10-15 % for commission processing or stuff like that, and some reimburse you the full payment. Also, don’t use this loophole to abuse the system! If the content is beneficial, respect the work and pay the money.
Copyright © Marcus Victor Grant, 2016-present