Webinar vs Webcast: What Are the Differences?

In today's world, it is very important for us to be able to communicate with each other effectively, without necessarily being in the same room. This is all the more important when it comes to conferences, meetings, and presentations. As companies expand and have branches all over the world it becomes absolutely imperative to have the right kind of tools that help communicate with one another and conduct business easily. In fact, many of you must have used a popular video conferencing tool like ezTalks Meetings and conducted phone conference, video conference, webcast or a live webinar. But as an employer, you may not perhaps completely be aware of the difference between a webcast and a webinar. So, we are going to help you understand what webinar and webcast is, and what is the difference between a webcast and a webinar.

What is Webinar?

A webinar is basically an online event that usually contains video, slides, or a visual demonstration. Typically, they are presented by one presenter or more, and a moderator helps with the introductions and also the question and answer sessions at the end of the event. To conduct their presentations, presenters use computers and they call in using a VoIP or telephone to speak through their presentation, and viewers use their computers or mobile device to tune in and watch the presentation. Webinars help in reaching a small-to-medium group of audience with a simple audio style and PowerPoint presentation.

Some important features of a Webinar:

• Content is generally presentation or slide-based;
• Presenters can either be in one place or different presenters may be in different parts of the world;
• Viewers can use their computer or mobile device and an internet connection to view the presentation;
• Viewers can participate in the question and answer session and enjoy real-time polling.

What is Webcast?

A webcast is a live online video event that generally is filmed just like a TV program using many cameras, and at times it also uses some type of slide contents. Presenters are present in the location, right in front of the camera, and the event then happens just like a TV interview that is recorded to be broadcasted later or is broadcasted live. Viewers can tune in through their computers or mobile device to view this kind of presentation. Webcasts help reach a large group of audience.

Some important features of a Webcast:

• Usually, offers high-quality video;
• Webcasts are more like a TV interview;
• Presenters are usually present on location, though, at times some may be included using a video link;
• Content is filmed using many cameras and can be combined with animations and pre-recorded videos;
• Viewers from all over the world can watch the webcast online, though there can also be a live audience present in the location.

What Is the Difference between A Webcast and A Webinar?

Both webcasts and webinars are about capturing and streaming video and audio through an online infrastructure but there are some differences between them.

The Presence of Presenters - Webinars are comparatively simpler to plan with presenters logging in/dialing and presenting from any remote location without necessarily having to be present there. But as far as a webcast is concerned, presenters have to be present on the location and will be captured on cameras.

The Content - The content of a webcast and a webinar is also different. Usually, a webinar comprises of slides and occasionally may include video demonstrations or content. In the case of a webcast, however, the presenters themselves are the focal point and slides can be used as well.

Ease of Setting Up - A webinar is easy to set up compared to a webcast. While a webinar may just be set up within an hour or two before the session begins, a webcast usually is set up a day before the event takes place.

The Audience - A webcast involves a larger audience than a webinar. While a webinar is just available online, a webcast together with being shown online also has a live audience. Furthermore, the live video of a webcast is more attractive than just the slide presentations offered by a webinar. A webcast also is more likely to be able to hold the attention of the audience for a longer time and thus is a great option for creating brand awareness.

Both webinars and webcasts are good in their own ways. It actually depends more on your requirements which one you should opt for. If you want to speak directly to your audience and conversation is important then webcasting will be more suitable for you. If, however, you have more of a visual content rich presentation to give to your audience, which can be pre-recorded, then a webinar will be ideal for you. Once you have decided which amongst these will be more suitable, the next thing you need to do is find the right tool or software, like ezTalks, to fulfill your requirements effectively and seamlessly.