Can you get away with “white lies”?

How important is it to be completely transparent in what you are doing as a small business owner? This article explores a growing phenomen where replay webinars are adverised as “live”!

Fake “Live” webinars

Over the last few months I have noticed more and more people advertising “live Webinars” where “… you will learn …” However, many of these so called “live” webinars are in fact pre-recorded and then set to “play” when accessed.   Why on earth would someone say that their webinar is “live’ when it isn’t? Another sign that the webinar is pre-corded is when there are six choices of times to watch. There are not many people who will get up at 1am, 3am and 6am (in their time-zone), two days in a row to do their webinar.  What is wrong with saying that “this is a popular webinar and here is your opportunity to watch the replay”.

A recent conversation with a group of female entrepreneurs who were asked what they thought of the practice of promoting evergreen/replay webinars as “live” found that 100% reported that they did not like “fake live” webinars and most also added that it was a complete turn off.

Why do it?

So, why do it? There are high-end coaches out there who teach their clients to do this as a way for them to promote their business – and guess what. It doesn’t work.  If I am on a webinar that is promoted as “live” and it isn’t, I immediately start wondering – what else have they lied about? And I also immediately decide that I would never buy anything from them, no matter how good their product or service is because I don’t trust what they are telling me!

There are at least two webinar companies that show their customers how to promote their webinars replays as “live”! Again – WHY? What is wrong with saying that it is a replay? Or better yet, if you believe that “live” webinars are better, than do your webinar live, even if you have to do the same webinar topic more than once. Build up and maintain trust with your brand and product by giving us exactly what you said you would!

Most people have no problem in watching a replay as long as they know it’s a replay. Be upfront and honest – that way you will build an audience of loyal customers. However, if you  promote something that isn’t true, then your brand and following will suffer.

So, why people do this? Is it because people are desperate and think it is an opportunity to jump on the webinar bandwagon? Or is it because people are lazy and couldn’t be bothered repeating their webinar?

How to use webinars in your business

Yes, webinars are a great way to engage your audience and relationships, so continue to use them. However, be upfront in terms of what you are offering;

  1. Promote your “live” webinars widely
  2. If you want to offer your “live” webinar to a wider audience, then do it again!
  3. Offer the recording as a “replay” or “evergreen”.
  4. Be upfront
  5. Don’t try and get away with pretending. We are not stupid


I’d love to hear your what you think. Have you ever watched a “live” webinar that wasn’t live? And if so, what are your thoughts/reactions?

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