Webinars (e.g. online seminars) are kind of like reading classic literature. I don’t want someone forcing me to read the Brothers Karamazov and then quizzing me on it; I’d much rather read it at my own pace, thank you very much. Same thing with webinars. I use to have to dial into them and it was like going to the dentist. Me no likey. But my impression of them changed quite rapidly the instant I checked out WebinarListings (particularly their calendar.) WebinarListings a central directory of current webinars that are going on, in many areas of interest, from social media to health to technology.
The site is a resource for people who want to learn about a particular topic – think of Wikipedia with better visuals and audio – and a place for webinar hosts to promote their webinars. Webinar hosts can post their webinars on WebinarListings for free, or upgrade for more visibility. The site itself does the heavy lifting by using social media to further promote these Featured Webinars, such as Twitter, Facebook, RSS feed, LinkedIn, and a weekly newsletter. Pricing info can be found here.
The site itself is nice and simple: either check out the calendar or add a webinar. The calendar, as I mentioned, is super-cool, with tons of useful webinars in the queue, such as Facebook for Non-Profits and Last Minute-Tax Tips for Small Businesses. In particular, folks interested in Web 2.0 and social networking/marketing would have a field day, have struck gold. Simply click on a webinar, and all the relevant information pops up. A webinar buffet, as it were!
Given my increasingly growing physical (and emotional distance) from the corporate and webinar world, it seems like stuff has passed me by: according to WebinarListings, the webinar/webcast market is expected to increase from $83 million in 2007 to $3.4 billion in 2014, and it’s pretty obvious why. For hosters, webinars expand their audience pool to previously-unheard of levels. And for specific niches of webinar hosts – e.g. social networking consultants – there are ample opportunities to cross-sell. Webinars, of course, benefit businesses and individuals as well. I envision companies all over scrambling to get up to speed on Web 2.0, social networking, and other trends; it’s not as if you can send staff to a training seminar down the hall or can afford to fly them to Palo Alto. WebinarListings is hip to these trends, and can be an invaluable one-stop repositiory for ongoing learning. And unlike reading a dense, ananachronistic novel, you don’t have to read a lot of words. Speaking of which, Brothers Karamazov is still sitting on my dresser, taunting me. So…many…words….