Video has become an increasingly relevant strategy for those working with the internet. The consumption of this type of content is increasing, whether in streaming services, such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu, in social networks like Instagram, and Facebook, or even in distance education. Youtube is an extraordinarily popular search engine that people use to find visual video answers to their questions.
Because of this, many companies are also investing in audiovisual content as a way to circumvent the lack of customer attention and offer incredible content with a high level of engagement. And how do they do this? The ever increasing and wildly popular way is by using webinars: online and live visual and audio presentations, with experts on the topic. Even if people can view the video later, having content being transmitted in real-time generates a lot of audience attention and engagement.
However, webinars differ from an ordinary video or live social network presentations in that it requires prior registration, through a landing page.
Have you ever heard that “The money is in the list!” It’s because it’s true. Many social media programs and presentation formats have no way to determine who attended your presentation and no way to market to those people that have already shown interest. Many people are only concerned about an inexpensive way to make their presentation with the short-sighted idea that if someone is interested, they will buy at the end of their presentation. Actually there are volumes of research that indicate online buyers rarely buy on a first visit, but many only after five or more touches with a vendor. This is where webinars have a clear and distinct advantage.
Want to know more about webinars? Read on.
Why use webinars
The webinar has proved to be an increasingly useful resource for people and companies to optimize their relationship with the public. Still not convinced? Then here is why you should use webinars.
a. Public attention
The increase in the volume of brands seeking space on the internet has a side effect. It is increasingly challenging to get the attention of the public, who are faced with endless options for content to consume. Therefore, only those who manage to overcome this obstacle are successful.
Offering a webinar is an effective way to attract audience interest. After all, most of the content available online has a text format, which ends up retaining the attention of some internet users. The webinar is an alternative to boredom and distraction.
For many people, it is much more interesting to watch a video about a subject than to read an article explaining it in detail. This differential is even more relevant when we speak of a live and interactive presentation, which give the attendees the feeling of greater participation in the event.
You already know that engagement is one of the most important metrics in digital marketing. And what can be better to enhance this factor than having a live broadcast? The webinar creates a connection between a person or a company and prospective customers that is essential for the success of the business. As the age-old adage goes; “People buy from those that they know, like and trust”. Webinars are an opportunity for your prospective clients to get to know those that they are going to choose to do business with.
During the webinar, you have the chance to receive and answer questions in real-time. This is important for several reasons. To begin with, this is an opportunity to show knowledge on the subject and establish yourself as an authority in the market. This makes it easier to attract new leads.
In addition, answering viewers’ questions allows you to educate them about your services or products. For this reason, the webinar is widely used to qualify leads and take them to the next steps in the sales funnel.
It also gives the presenter an opportunity to address questions or concerns and eliminate objections to closing a sale.
A well-structured commercial website is essential for any marketing strategy. However, there is no point in having an excellent portal if the public does not develop the habit of visiting it.
To ensure this, it takes more than using good SEO techniques. Above all, visitors to your website need to come across original and relevant content, in order to value the experience provided by the visit. For this, diversifying the content is essential.
Making a webinar available is one way to increase website traffic. If done well, the event will be shared by your audience, attracting more visitors, and consequently, increasing the viral nature of popular information.
To do this, you must know how to conduct a webinar. Below we’ll tell you how you can organize a successful webinar.
Tips to do a successful webinar
It is worth remembering that each person or business must stay true to their company and brand. Therefore, it is essential to base the strategy on the characteristics of your persona or business. Regardless of the quality of the webinar, it will only be effective if it is seen as relevant and authentic and original by the target audience. Attendees can quickly and easily see through hyperbole and sales speak.
1. Choose a theme
The choice of the theme is important for the development of the online presentation. If you don’t know where to start, a good idea is to look at your content and look for those that have the greatest positive impact with your audience.
Also, you can use keyword tools to identify the terms most searched for by your target market clients. Based on this, it is possible to discover the most relevant topics for prospects and develop your webinar in an interesting and attractive way.
In addition to choosing the topic, it is very important to pay attention to the title assigned to the videoconference. With constant access to a high volumes of information, consumers tend to be interested only in content with clear and focused topics.
2. Set the date
Proper planning is essential to the success of any type of approach. A webinar is no different.
WARNING: Walking the fine line to a perfect webinar presentation and balancing that with taking action before perfection is difficult! It’s better to error on the side of action. Webinars are much better and exponentially more effective being presented than being refined and edited and stewed over and re-designed. Pick a date in the future as a deadline and commit to doing the presentation on that date. It helps to send invitations or do some marketing to help solidify a date.
In addition to the day of the event, selecting a good time is critical. Thousands of Google searchers want to know what is the best time of day to have a webinar? And the answer to this question is; It depends. After all, the great appeal of this type of content is the sense of event and urgency which generated by a live and interactive broadcast. Therefore, it is essential to choose a time when your attendees will be available. IF you are doing B2B, you may want to consider late morning hours while your attendees have had an opportunity to put out some morning fires and yet are still energized. After lunch, attendees may be feeling some post-lunch tiredness, boredom or conflicts with other tasks that must be completed in the afternoon. If your presentations are designed to be presented to B2C or individuals at home, you have a few options. Let’s say that you’re presenting to stay at home parents, or maybe retirees. In this case, again, you may want to consider a time after breakfast and before lunch. If you are presenting to people after their work-day, you may want to consider some time after the dinner rush. Many people are rushing around usually until 7. pm. 7 is a good local time to have an evening webinar. You may also want to consider a weekend webinar. In the coming weeks and months we will be researching these types of questions and share the results of our findings. Until then test these ideas yourself. Try your webinars at different times and different days of the week. Track your results and then begin to build a “most effective model” that you can replicate going forward.
Also, remember the stipulated goal. If the purpose of your webinar is to sell, it may be better to do it at the beginning of the month or quarter. This is the period when people have more money in their budgets. Test this against the end of the quarter when businesses are pushing to meet sales objectives.
3. Choose a webinar platform
Another important decision for the realization of your webinar is the choice of the platform. It is essential that it enables a satisfactory user experience. That is, perform your webinars with value, professionalism and quality, without the hassles of technical problems and hang-ups.
HEADS-UP: Here at Webinar-Hosting, we strongly recommend finding a platform that is “Browser-Based”! Days of downloading software by attendees are quickly coming to an end. Software is a hassle for attendees and causes problems. There are literally thousands of people that simply don’t know how to download and install software programs. Save yourself and your attendees a lot of frustration by using a webinar platform that can be played in a web-browser.
In addition, the webinar hosting platforms are becoming more and more feature-rich. Most platforms today typically include the following critical features. A way to send invitations, create polls, answer questions via chat, Q&A or address live, many offer a rehearsal mode so that you can practice your webinar before going in front of a live audience.
Facebook Live events or Youtube streaming events are free and can be effective, however, I don’t recommend them because as mentioned earlier, you can’t track your attendees or gather their e-mail information.
Webinar Hosting’s objective is to guide webinar presenters to outstanding webinar hosting solutions. There are many terrific companies and outstanding platforms which are offered at very affordable and reasonable prices. In addition, there are a few platforms that are horrible. As a matter of fact, one leading company in particular, I would not use because their invitation, scheduling, and reminder notices are utter and complete rubbish! I am looking forward to pointing out their flaws which I don’t even think they are aware of. Sadly people that use their services are evidently oblivious to the importance of these critical functions when choosing a webinar hosting provider.
Webinar Hosting is going to recommend and publicize information about companies that are knowledgeable, professional and experienced. We are happy to mention a few of these companies here.
4. Create a landing page
A landing page is nothing more than the page where people will sign up to participate in your webinar. It should include either an explanation of the webinar, what a person will gain or benefit by attending as well, a clear and concise time, date, and timezone. It must have obviously have a place for registrants to enter their e-mail. Name, phone, and other information is optional, however, if you want to deploy a text message to remind registrants of a webinar, a cell number is imperative.
In exchange for information such as name, email, and phone number, people will sign up to stay on top of everything that involves the event.
5. Spread the word and create expectations
The time has come to attract subscribers to your webinar. Here you can count on different communication channels, using both organic and paid traffic. A good email marketing campaign can increase the reach of the webinar and attract more participants.
In addition, it is essential to use your social networks to share the date and time of the broadcast. Prepare a small information poster for all of your channels by inviting your audience to participate in the webinar. Try using short videos on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube. Don’t forget always to leave a link directing the audience to your landing page. That way, in addition to increasing reach, you also intensify lead generation.
It is also important to include calls-to-action in your posters, inviting readers to participate in the webinar. In addition, it never hurts to ask your friends and followers to share the love.
6. Structure a script
As much as you have full mastery of the subject you are going to discuss in the webinar, make a script. The amount of detail can vary depending on your need. But ideally, you should have at least the main points.
Below is a basic stripped down example of some key points:
I. Introduction and your personal history (5 to 10 minutes) Used to build credibility, trust and authority. Also an opportunity to ask attendees to say hi and tell you where they are located.
II. Tell people what to expect. (Tell them what you are going to tell them.)
III. A hook. Stay to the end to receive X, which may be a free gift, some software, some valuable piece of information, a PDF, a white paper etc.
IV. Main presentation (20 to 40 minutes) and Call to action. Any kind of bonus or reason to buy now. Tell them what you want them to do. Click this link and buy X.
V. Questions and answers (10 minutes)
VI. Present their reason for staying until the end.
Also, remember that you must end your main presentation with a call to action.
You can use the last 5 minutes of the main presentation to offer a product, suggest that your audience subscribe to an exclusive email list, or simply ask people to like your Facebook page or other social media profiles.
7. Prepare a visual presentation
It is very common to use a slide show during the webinar. Having texts and images on the screen makes it easier for your audience to follow and take notes.
Some options for assembling the slides are the famous PowerPoint, Keynote (if you use Mac), Prezi, or even Google Slides, which can be accessed through Google Drive.
However, you don’t want to give an uninteresting talk. Your mission is to capture and retain the audience’s attention. Therefore, keep everyone engaged.
For this, we recommend you use relative photos, visuals and talking points. Take time to test different colors, fonts, and images to make your presentation beautiful, modern and valuable.
The general tips are:
• Use fonts big enough to be read from a smart phone.
• Provide the material in bite size pieces which are easy to understand.
• Illustrate with icons and images and photos.
• Vary the colors and media throughout the presentation in order to retain focus and interest.
8. Build a webinar schedule
To avoid unforeseen events and follow the planning correctly, it is important to develop a schedule to serve as a guide in the weeks leading up to the webinar. Set aside at least two weeks to work on efficient advertising and serve paid ads. During this period, be sure to create an aesthetically pleasing landing page with information about your presentation. The litmus test is “Would anyone that reviews this information be crazy to not register?” You want everyone that visits your page to think to themselves that they would be crazy to not register and attend because of the amazing benefit to themselves for taking the valuable time out of their schedule to attend.
During the week before the webinar, perform tests to ensure that you have mastered the platform that will be used, checking all its functionality. Do a test webinar. Present to a co-worker, a team member or a family member. Do not try and do a first webinar “cold-turkey”. Also, review and refine your script and slide presentation.
On the day of the event, do tests to check the quality of the internet connection and the capture of audio and image. Hours before the start, send reminders to the public to ensure that all interested parties participate.
What to do after the presentation?
You followed the schedule, you presented your webinar and executed it with precision. Now, what do you do after the presentation? Ignoring the post-webinar portion of planning can reduce its impact on the audience. It is important to show that you are still available to the audience even after the end of your webinar.
So, to start, conduct a satisfaction survey with the participants. The feedback obtained in this stage is fundamental to improve future webinars and better to understand the needs and wants of the audience and how your products and services can meet those needs.
Send a follow-up e-mail to attendees and a link to your webinar recording to anyone that may have missed your presentation. This is a way of strengthening the relationship with the public and gaining their trust.
Continue to test multiple registration pages and landing pages. Try different marketing channels to generate new leads or to combat ad blindness by those that are not responsive to your ads. People who have not attended the webinar can hear about it and share the love.
How to measure the results of the webinar
As important as conducting the webinar is to measure its effectiveness. Right after the end of your webinar, it is imperative to assess some KPIs, the famous key performance indicators.
The most important are:
• Attendance rate
• E-mails acquired
• Viewing time
• Audience participation
With this information in hand, it is possible to compare the objectives outlined during the planning phase and identify what needs to be improved. If you’ve held webinars before, it’s important to cross-check the data and analyze what has been optimized and what has gotten worse.
Also, be sure to follow closely the comments left by participants on social networks or other channels of webinar feedback.
Check and measure website and page traffic and contrast prior levels to pre-webinar traffic as well as post webinar traffic.
Review webinar recording statistics and measure the success of offering a post webinar recording.
Your webinars can be a silver bullet to generating prospects, leads and sales for whatever product or service you are promoting. Webinars are a tool designed to effectively and efficiently and now safely attract leads, educate your audience, and generate more sales. They have a flexible format, which requires few resources and can be used to create several other types of content.
As stated earlier, webinars are a critical arrow in the quiver of cost-efficient, time-efficient, travel-efficient and technology-leveraging tool that can increase your bottom line.