A dilemma we face fairly consistently when it comes to webinar content is whether it is better to promote the on-demand version of something or run it again as a simulive event. Both events have their benefits, though we have found simulive to work better. But before you exit out of this page and start setting up a bunch of simulive events, let’s walk through the differences between on-demand and simulive. You may find that one is more appropriate than the other for your needs.
What is the Difference?
An on-demand webinar is always on. Once the webinar is published, viewers can access it whenever and wherever they please. It features all of the same engagement tools as a live/simulive webinar (though Q&A can be a little tricky). Both live and simulive webinars switch over to on-demand after the initial airing.
A simulive webinar simulates a live webinar by playing a rerecorded event at a specified time. Just like the on-demand webinar, this features all of the same engagement tools as a live webinar. For the viewer, this looks just like a live webinar.
Which to use
Strangely enough, the biggest feature of on-demand seems to also be the biggest drawback. Whenever we promote a straight-to-on-demand webinar vs a simulive, the simulive always wins. It seems that promoting a webinar as an “event” with a date and time drives people to register, whereas serving something that is instantly accessible allows people to put it off.
Whenever possible I always encourage the use of simulive. In our experience, it will allow you to generate more registration and attendance and will always be available on-demand after. It will also allow you to have someone in the QA role to answer any questions people have during the airing.