Webinars as a Support System for Telework during the COVID-19 Pandemic in JAPAN

The concept of webinar

Since the beginning of the current coronavirus crisis, Japan and the world in general have seen more and more webinars being promoted not only by people working in public sectors but in private sectors as well. In Japan, people specifically like to go to events such as business seminars and press conferences because meeting physically and connecting in person is a very important part of Japanese business culture. However, COVID-19 has forced people to change, not only the way they do business, but also in the way they learn. That is why most companies are now migrating everything online, including webinars. 

A webinar stands for web seminar or simply a seminar conducted over the internet. It is a content marketing and lead management tool mainly used in B-to-B for product / service presentations or customer issues.

True purpose of a webinar 

When conducting a webinar, many companies aim at strengthening their clientele. Therefore, lead nurturing becomes, according to marketing specialists,  “the process of developing relationships with buyers at every stage of the sales funnel, and through every step of the buyer’s journey.” From this perspective, webinars’ organizers emphasize marketing and communication strategies, by understanding the needs of potential customers, while providing them with needed information and answers.

Types of webinar software platforms used in Japan 

There are many webinar software platforms that are being used today, more than before, due to the spread of COVID-19 in Japan as well as in other countries. A few of the most popular among them are as follows:


As its name suggests, FreshVoice is a tool designed from the beginning to be used as a webinar.  There is no need to install the application; giving even people who are not familiar with PCs the possibility to easily operate it. In addition, a simultaneous two-way call for up to 3 people and simultaneous delivery for up to 50 people are possible.

Moreover, it is easy to see who is speaking using the hand-raising function. Functions used in conventional video conferencing such as recording function and chat are covered. The platform supports Japanese and English, and its support system is quite efficient and perfect.  

  • ZOOM

Zoom is a tool with worldwide support as a standard tool for free video conferencing. Easy to operate for everyone from the beginning and can support a wide range of environments from desktop to mobile.

This platform allows users to connect up to 1,000 people. Additionally, it has good security measures and is easy to use. Finally, the platform provides the possibility to link with many mail applications and calendar applications.

  • Cocripo 

Cocripo is a webinar tool that focuses on the ease of connection and high quality. Since it can be basically used on a browser,  the event organizer only needs to prepare a chrome browser. Participants can join regardless of the device being used (PC or mobile). Currently, the platform is seemingly operated in Japanese only for now. However, since it is a major webinar software in Japan, there might be a possibility for an English version to be hopefully  released in a near future.    

At last, this platform has measures to minimize disconnection during communication and the function to reconnect even if disconnected. Therefore, users can be at ease while communicating via the system.   

* Source: 

The above only explains about a few webinar software platforms used by Japanese organizations. However, there are plenty of other platforms such as CiscoWebex, GoToWebinar, Live Stream, BigMarker, Airmeet and so on. 

Examples of webinars (events) implemented in Japan 

There have been several webinars since the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. And there will be more to be conducted from now on. Here are a few examples: 

  • Webinar by International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), a global network of communication professionals committed to improving organizational effectiveness through strategic communication:

This webinar focused on how effective diversity & inclusion helps businesses achieve breakthroughs impacting APAC. The main question discussed was: “Does diversity & inclusion reform corporate activities? – Can diversity and inclusion drive innovation?”.

* Source: https://iabc.jp/2020/05/08/3581/

  • Webinar by APCO Worldwide, an independent global public affairs and strategic communications consultancy:

This webinar held by public relations specialists was dealing with the Impact of COVID-19 on conducting public affairs in Japan. 

* Source: https://apcoworldwide.com/blog/webinar-recap-the-impact-of-covid-19-on-conducting-public-affairs-in-japan/ 

  • Webinar by Empowered JAPAN Executive Steering Committee: 

This webinar was conducted in the academic field to help students keep learning during the pandemic. For workers, another webinar was carried out to teach them about  the mindset and technology needed for telework. 

* Source

Conclusion: Future Perspectives 
Webinars are now becoming part of the training in Japanese companies and probably the way of promoting  businesses. In fact, webinars can be a powerful tool to empower businesses, both in B-to-B and B-to-C interactions. Japan has the reputation of using high tech systems. Hopefully, the culture of using webinars will continue to spread, as many people are shifting their businesses online.