Hosting Successful Panel Discussions through Webinars

What Do You Mean By A Panel Discussion ?

A panel discussion is a type of group discussion where a group of individuals with diverse backgrounds and perspectives come together to share their ideas, opinions and expertise on a particular topic. The individuals participate in a structured conversation moderated by a moderator or facilitator, who guides the discussion and ensures all participants have an equal opportunity to express their views. On affordable webinar platforms , they do generally take place as of now.


Panel discussions often involve a mix of questions from the moderator and the audience, allowing for a dynamic and interactive exchange of ideas. These events are commonly used in academia, conferences, and other public forums to provide a platform for experts to share their knowledge and insights on a particular subject, and engage in meaningful and thought-provoking discussions. The goal of a panel discussion is to promote knowledge exchange, spark new ideas, and foster critical thinking and debate. 

Relation Of Webinars And Panel Discussions  

Webinars and panel discussions are similar in some ways and yet different in others. Both are online events that aim to provide knowledge, insights and engage the audience in discussions on a specific topic.


However, a webinar is typically a one-way presentation led by a single speaker who presents information and demonstrates their expertise on the topic. The audience can ask questions via a chat function but there is generally no direct interaction between the speaker and the audience.


In contrast, a panel discussion involves multiple individuals sharing their expertise, opinions and experiences on a topic in a structured conversation format. A moderator is usually present to guide the discussion and facilitate interaction between the panelists and the audience. Panel discussions provide a platform for a more dynamic exchange of ideas and can often lead to more in-depth conversations and debates.


In conclusion, while both affordable webinar platforms , the panel discussions aim to educate and engage the audience, webinars are more focused on delivering information, while panel discussions focus on fostering interaction and exchanging ideas among participants.


How To Execute A Successful Panel Discussion Webinar 

Audience Comes First 

To plan a successful webinar panel discussion, it is essential to focus on your audience’s needs and preferences. The first step is to identify the purpose of your event and ensure that the panelists you select align with that goal. Avoid filling the panel with individuals who do not have relevant information to offer to your audience. 


To stay focused on your audience, consider asking for their input. Reach out to both potential and existing registrants to find out what topics they are most interested in. This can be done through online surveys or emails. By taking the time to understand what your audience wants, you can ensure that the webinar panel discussion stays on track, covers critical topics, and meets the needs of your listeners.

Pre Event Dry Running 

Proper preparation is crucial to the success of hosting a webinar, especially when a panel discussion is included. Once you have identified the panelists, it is important to start organizing the schedule and highlighting their unique strengths. It is also important to define the key objectives of the discussion. This strategic preparation will help ensure that the webinar panel discussion runs smoothly and achieves its desired outcome.


Selection  Of Event Speakers 

Once you have determined your goals, it’s time to select your webinar panel speakers. Hosting a webinar panel allows you to choose the best speakers to fit your needs. Don’t limit yourself to only those you have a prior relationship with. Be bold and reach out to industry experts who can bring added value to your session. Having well-known names on your panel can increase registration and attendance. Make sure to include speakers with diverse perspectives and opinions to encourage lively discussion and debate between panelists and with the audience. Having a range of viewpoints will make the discussion more engaging and thought-provoking.


Addressing Properly

As the host of a session on an affordable webinar platform, you have certain duties to your audience, including effectively opening the session. Avoid taking an impromptu approach, as it may result in losing their attention before the discussion even begins. Instead, plan ahead and be creative with your opening. Provide a brief overview of the value offered during the session and highlight any important instructions they will need as the event progresses. Use this time to also emphasize when the question and answer sessions will be held to manage expectations accordingly. Your opening sets the tone for the rest of the discussion, so make sure to make a strong impression.


Try To Make Session Interactive 

Encouraging audience questions during a webinar panel discussion is important, but it’s also helpful to have some of your own questions prepared. You never know what questions may or may not be asked, so having thought-provoking questions for each of your speakers can help keep the discussion moving forward and offer an interesting perspective for your listeners. Having your own questions ready can help ensure that the discussion stays on track and covers all the key points you want to address.


Before starting the live webinar panel discussion, it’s important to remind each panelist of the expectations for the session. If you notice that the discussion starts to veer into excessive self-promotion, try to steer it back towards the original topic. By keeping the discussion focused on the core topic and avoiding excessive self-promotion, you can deliver a more valuable and enjoyable experience for your audience.


Final Thoughts 

In conclusion, webinar hosting services can be a highly effective way to share information, engage with an audience, and encourage discussion and debate. To ensure a successful webinars panel discussion, it’s important to think about your audience, select a diverse group of speakers, plan ahead and be creative with your opening, and have thought-provoking questions at the ready. By putting in the time and effort to properly plan and execute your webinars panel discussion, you can deliver valuable content and provide a memorable experience for your attendees.


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