Why Webinars Are Not Enough (The Power Of A Live Workshop)


A live workshop has four walls. That may not seem impressive to most of us, but it makes a world of a difference both for you and your client. For a client to get to those four walls, she has to shower, dress and travel some distance (often large distances) to be present. She also had to put her life, and if she's smart, her work on hold to be part of an event. This means you have the focus and attention of the client like never before. At least while your clients are seated at the live workshop, they're listening to a lot of what you say, and doing a lot of what you tell them to do.

I’ve read at least a hundred books on watercolors

Yet my watercolor work barely nudged ahead, despite practicing every single day. Then, I went to Spain in September 2012. I was there for a week. In that week, we did about 10 different paintings in watercolor. To say that I was out of my depth, is an understatement. I had never used an easel before; never drawn at a 45° angle; didn’t like landscapes that much — the list goes on and on.

But in that one week, my work jumped several notches. And this is because I was a lot more focused, saw and experienced things that I could not have experienced while sitting with my dozens of watercolor books. To give you an example, just the way the instructor used the palette made an immense difference to me.

The fact that I could not escape from the room also helped.

In most situations, I will get easily distracted

After about 15-20 minutes or so, I will start fidgeting with my iPad or phone even if I’m watching something online. But in a workshop situation there is other stimulus and activities that helps me focus a lot more. I also don’t have access to my iPad, phone or other distractions.

And to me, that is the critical difference between a workshop and a webinar

From a presenter’s point of view, you have far more of the attention of the audience than you could ever hope to have with the webinar. From the audience’s point of view, they have a lot more focus as well. They see things that they could not have seen in a webinar.

They experience energy and get a feel for the material and the person presenting it, in a way they is almost impossible through an online experience.

Yes, a webinar is very handy for a client

Sometimes it’s easier just to jump on a webinar, learn something and not have to take a plane, stay in a hotel, and spend all that money and time. And for some folks, having to deal with people all day is extremely tiring. How much easier it would be to just sit at your computer with a cup of coffee and watch a webinar instead.

And that is what I believed as well

I believed that online learning was so efficient that if the presenter really knew what he or she was doing (not always the case), then you get a pretty solid experience of the material. But I don’t believe this to be true any more.

I say this even though I still believe that online training has a lot of advantages. I believe that for both the business owner and the client, a live workshop should be part of the mix.

As a presenter/business owner, it would be very prudent of you to have both

Despite the enormous expenditure in terms of time and money — not to speak of energy, we continue to have workshops at least once every two years. To host our live workshop takes about a month of travel, a month of planning and at least a month of recovery time. That’s three whole months in a year.

In that same amount of time, I could host 2 to 3 online webinars, maybe even do a couple of courses and generate revenues far exceeding what I would earn in a workshop.

Even so, the workshop experience is what draws loyal clients to us on a consistent basis

A client who has done a live workshop with us ends up buying far more product and doing as many as 3 to 4 courses (remember our courses are not cheap).

This is because they get to know us at a granular level rather than through some online delivery system. This increases the trust many times over. In comparison, someone who has just read our material or done an online course, is still likely to buy quite a lot of product/and do an online course. But they pale in comparison to the people who have met us in the flesh.

And this is why I always suggest that you do live workshops

For Psychotactics, the workshop is probably the most expensive way for us to generate our income. It is also the tiniest revenue generator (often less than 2-5% of our income), and as I suggested earlier, sucks up a ton of time. Even so, we will continue to do the workshops because it is advantageous for us as business owners.

We will also continue to do a lot of online courses—and you have to treat them as a mix. You don’t want to get rid of the online experience or the offline experience. They both serve completely different purposes.

The offline experience is the harder road to take

This is the road that most of us do not want to take.

Take the road less – trodden and you will see for yourself that the results far exceed your expectations. Those four walls may not seem like much to you and me.

But they make a difference — an enormous difference.





15+ years ago, fresh out of college with a degree in accounting Sean de Souza joined an advertising agency where he *met* Leo Burnett, a man who had spent his lifetime in the hard trenches of communication and advertising.

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