What is the best webinar platform
5 popular webinar platforms compared
Webinars are a great way to connect with customers and prospects. You can use the content you place to pass on advice, tips and purchase recommendations and thus consolidate your expert status. The interactivity of webinars makes it easier to bind customers to your company, because getting to know each other in person builds a bridge between the user and the organizer. In order for a webinar to run smoothly, both technically and in terms of content, the choice of the correct webinar provider is crucial: In the following sections you can read how we differentiate and classify GoToWebinar, Cisco WebEx, TeamViewer, Zoom and Adobe Connect webinars.
What is important when choosing a webinar platform
Strategically defined criteria are the be-all and end-all when choosing a webinar platform. The webinar hypetrain has been accelerated again by the current development: A complete overview of all webinar providers can now hardly be created.
It is therefore essential to think about the assessment in advance: goal, purpose, number of participants, budget, interactivity and duration, these are all valuable criteria for assessing a webinar. It is not possible to create a comprehensive list of criteria due to the wide range of possible uses for webinars. For the following assessment in a marketing context, we have therefore limited ourselves to the following assessment criteria:
- Aim: Is the webinar intended as a training course, as a replacement for meetings or for promoting a product? Not every tool fulfills each of these purposes equally well, so this decision is one of the most important.
- Interactivity: Is it possible to interact with the participants? (Surveys, co-moderation, screen transfer user ...)
- Number of participants: How many participants does the tool allow? There are sometimes differences here, which are reflected in the price on closer inspection.
- Technical details: HD video, VoIP, encryption ...
- Functions: Before, during and after the webinar, the various providers provide different functions, such as invitation management, branding options, tracking options, interaction elements, e-mail nurturing, streaming and reporting. Not everyone needs all functions for every webinar or already covers them with their own software and platforms.
- Budget: The prices differ depending on the range of functions and provider. It must be kept in mind that you do not always get the desired tool at the desired price with the desired functions.
The most popular webinar providers in comparison
In accordance with these evaluation criteria, we will introduce you to the most popular webinar providers and compare them. There is no general answer to the question of the ultimate in webinar providers: Depending on the individual case, the optimal solution looks different.
GoToWebinar as a jack-of-all-trades among webinar providers
LogMeIn's GoToWebinar is the first webinar provider we want to take a closer look at. GoToWebinar is one of the slightly more expensive webinar providers, but that is also due to the numerous functions that the tool offers. In addition to the details mentioned below, the tool also offers the option of uploading recorded webinars as video-on-demand within the platform. This is an opportunity you should take advantage of because it will help you reach new viewers within the GoToWebinar community.
- Technical details and functions: VoIP, HD video transmission, integration into CRM, individual registration links, the transfer of mouse and keyboard control to other participants and recordings are among the strengths of GoToWebinar.
- Up to 1,000 participants in the basic version with unlimited duration
- Follow-up functions, such as an analysis of the user's session duration, enable holistic reporting
- GoToWebinar's price fluctuates between 89 and 429 euros per month, depending on the package
Conclusion: GoToWebinar is a holistically sensible prepared webinar software for every purpose, which belongs to the upper price category. The layout and preparation of the tool can cause difficulties at the start for technology-savvy users.
CiscoWebEx - Cisco’s webinar software as the industry leader
As a major player in the IT industry, Cisco offers a tool with WebEx that is suitable for video and web conferences. The various software solutions from WebEx are suitable for both internal and external communication: WebEx Events corresponds to the tool for webinars and offers the classic web conference tools (HD streaming, moderation and creation of registration links, VoIP) for its users In terms of technical quality, GoToWebinar is in no way inferior.
- If GoToWebinar is technically in no way inferior: HD video, VoIP, screen sharing and the recording of webinars are also possible here
- Bonus: lead tracking and scoring, seamless integration into CRM, automated registrations
- Up to 500 participants with video / 3,000 participants without video
- The basic meeting function of WebEx is available free of charge. Depending on the tariff, WebEx prices fluctuate between 19 and 29 euros per month, WebEx does not release any guidelines for the events package, an individual request for your company must be made to the sales department
- Layout and branding options
Conclusion: Cisco WebEx Events webinar software is an affordable choice for all marketers planning internal and external video conferences. The layout of the tool is a matter of taste: GoToWebinar and Cisco WebEx Events are technically similar, individual taste and budget are decisive here.
TeamViewer - more than just screen sharing
You may be wondering what a screen sharing program like TeamViewer is doing in this list: In addition to the classic screen sharing feature, TeamViewer also has a video conference tool with features such as VoIP, recording and end-2-end encryption.
The tools that make TeamViewer attractive as a remote desktop tool also play an important role in the webinars: whiteboard, chat, screen transfer and the sharing of files via drag and drop are intuitive tools for designing the webinar. TeamViewer offers up to 300 participants the chance to take part in the webinar live.
Using TeamViewer for webinars is not a classic solution for webinar organizers, but according to their own information, TeamViewer is already installed on 2 billion devices. Therefore, the probability that TeamViewer is already activated for your company is high. If that is the case, TeamViewer is certainly worth considering for the first webinar attempts.
- VoIP, HD video and audio
- Recording of the conference
- Up to 300 live participants
- Screen sharing and remote desktop control
- In terms of price, TeamViewer is the most expensive tool of the round: The Teams and Enterprise offers are among the more expensive tools at 58/125 euros per month
Conclusion: The high price is due to the actual purpose of the software. The technical quality of TeamViewer webinars meets the standard, but the holistic integration into a marketing context (registration platforms, branding, CRM integration) is missing. Suitable for first webinars and training courses, provided the tool is already anchored in your company.
Zoom - The data controversy in the rearview mirror
It's time to talk to the elephant in the room. Zoom, with up to 300 million daily users, is and remains the world's most popular platform for video conferencing - despite data controversy. It is essential to keep in mind that size and popularity led to the discovery of these vulnerabilities.
For understandable reasons, Zoom is currently doing everything it can to close these security loopholes and has come astonishingly far on this path in a very short time. From our point of view, it is worth taking a closer look here, since for many users zoom is still, or better, a good choice again. Requirement: The security settings made available must also be made by the user.
Zoom offers video conferencing, web conferencing or webinars for up to 100 panelists. Advantages are HD video and audio, local or cloud-based recording and the possibility of interaction in the meetings (surveys, requests to speak). The email and registration forms are customizable for individual branding.
Zoom offers a wide range of analysis tools for webinars, such as information on participant participation, votes or reports on registrants. In addition, Zoom enables live broadcast via social channels through Facebook Live and YouTube integration.
- HD video and audio
- Local or cloud-based recording and storage
- Opportunities for interaction
- Individual branding for every form and webinar
- Analysis tools
- Live broadcast on Facebook and YouTube
- Starting from 13 euros per month per moderator, Zoom offers flexible offers for companies
Conclusion: Zoom is probably the most popular solution for video conferencing. An intuitive layout, individual design options, high technical quality and a fair price speak for Zoom as webinar software. The possibility of connecting it to your own systems such as HubSpot also makes Zoom interesting for marketers.
Adobe Connect Webinars is software giant Adobe's webinar platform - and the possibilities are vast. A general distinction is made between the solutions Adobe Connect Meetings (for internal communication), Adobe Connect Webinars (the webinar tool) and Adobe Connect Learning. Adobe Connect offers comprehensive features for its users: Live conferences take place in meeting rooms, which are organized in “pods”.
Participation in webinars is possible with Flash-enabled supported browsers or with the desktop application. The webinars can be recorded, edited and published. Adobe Connect has the ability to create a customizable webinar registration form to help brand the webinar.
- VoIP, HD video transmission, integration into CRM, individual registration links, the transfer of mouse and keyboard control to other participants and recordings are well integrated in Adobe Connect.
- Up to 1,000 participants in the basic version with unlimited duration
- Follow-up functions such as an analysis of the user's session duration enable holistic reporting
- Webinars package from 120 euros per month
Conclusion: The “Adobe Connect Webinars” package impresses with its high quality and is in principle suitable for any purpose, whether it is a meeting, training or marketing webinar. However, the positive impression has a corresponding price. Adobe Connect is suitable for companies that see webinars as an integral part of their marketing strategy and do not want to compromise on functionality. For many, however, this could also mean unnecessary additional workload for the application. Less intuitive than simpler tools.
Which webinar software is right for my goals?
The answer is: Depending on the marketing strategy and project, a different webinar software is recommended. For easy handling and control, Zoom is (again) a good choice, GoToWebinar serves a similar market, the differences are in the details.
Adobe offers high quality at a high price for larger companies, TeamViewer is one of the exotic outsiders and is less suitable for marketing purposes. There are many factors that come into play when choosing which webinar software to use.
Most webinar platforms are available as free trials. Test them extensively before you make a final decision, preferably with the help of someone who is familiar with both your application scenario and the various providers. In general, each of the webinar tools mentioned above has its authorization.
But there is more to running a successful webinar than choosing the right tool. Our webinar checklist provides a few pointers to help you prepare for your webinar:
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