My publisher, John Ehlen, is the host of the York/Johnson Controls seminar series, and he gave me plenty of notice when the first one would occur. I even set the date in my electronic calendar with a drop-down dialog box to remind me — one hour early — of the starting time. Unfortunately, I had to miss it. An editorial problem arose unexpectedly, and I had to resolve it.
This is, of course, where you love technology. Even though I missed the session, I was able to log on after registering and had access to the entire Webinar, which included John's introduction, a few comments by Jeff Revlet, training manager with York International, and Tom Piscitelli, the presenter, many of whom you know personally or through his columns in this magazine.
John doesn't know that I didn't “show up” at the Webinar, but since I listened to the entire session, my “absence” will remain a secret (until he reads this).
The thrust of all this is that wholesalers and contractors can access vital information, from sales to service and technical issues, through a medium like a Webinar.
Here are a few benefits of Webinars in general and those hosted by this magazine:
If you have even the most elementary knowledge of a computer, you simply log on and, poof, there's the Webinar. Just turn up the volume and enjoy a great learning experience.
- Speed to Market
In the York/Tom Piscitelli Webinar, they can train hundreds of contractors throughout the country in a matter of minutes. Wholesalers and manufacturers can introduce products and services internationally in a matter of minutes too.
You'll know topics beforehand. This helps you decide whether you should attend or to whom you should offer an invitation in your business.
If you have a question(s) about the topic that isn't offered during the seminars, you can usually send an e-mail and have the presenter answer it. This is an argument in favor of attending Webinars live. This is the only opportunity for you and fellow employees to ask questions that are relevant to your needs or concerns.
Sometimes you just can't attend when it's scheduled. I think this might be the greatest strength of the Webinar. Just as I couldn't attend the original date, you can turn a lunch session into a comfortable learning session. I confess that my lunch hour is often when I relax with something that I want to read or study. So it's a sandwich in one hand and the book in the other or staring at the computer screen. By the time you read this, about four Webinars will be completed. Go to the registration site, log on and you can “make up” any past sessions so that you're completely up-to-date.
As The Wall Street Journal noted recently, free is still a powerful word. I couldn't help but think what Contracting Business or Tom Piscitelli could charge for this Webinar. Probably a lot. But here you have all this valuable information for FREE. Incredibly, they also allow people to download the slides.
- Convenience and Cost
Consider the convenience and cost issues. You attend in the privacy of your office or training room. You don't have to spend a penny on gasoline or a plane ticket and have no travel time costs.
- Extra Info
It's only a click away. If you have any questions from the sponsor, in this case York/Johnson Controls, all you have to do is click on the logo, which is a hotlink to the sponsor, without ever losing contact with the Webinar.
- Contact with Your Contractors
The Webinar series targets contractors, although every wholesaler will find the information invaluable. You can use the Webinar as a way to draw contractors together for a training session at your company. Wrap up the session by adding information about your own company that you want them to know.
That's all it takes. The next two dates are April 18 and May 2. Just go to www.contractingbusiness.com/salesbytes. Enrolling takes less than a minute.
See you at the next Webinar.
In last month's column, my fingers slipped, and I typed the wrong initials for APR Supply Co. Sorry, Randy and Scott, we certainly know your company's name.