How To Convert Webinar Leads into Sales Prospects Faster

With an almost 44% percent adoption rate, webinars are rightfully considered one of the best ways to generate leads, especially in B2B marketing.

However, getting dozens of warm leads from a webinar is one thing; converting them into paying customers is another story. According to different sources, 20% to 40% webinar attendees become qualified leads, but only 2%–5% of them will actually buy anything from you.

In this article, we’ll share some of the best tactics to maximize your webinar conversions, including a proven post-webinar follow-up sequence to help you get on track. So, let’s dive right in!

The Webinar Sales Funnel, Explained

Before we talk about conversions, let’s touch upon the webinar sales funnel in general and how it works. The process itself is pretty straightforward.

It’s usually the marketing team who is in charge of the event planning and lead generation, i.e., they attract the relevant audience to sign up for and attend the event.

After the webinar, they hand the list of leads over to the sales or SDR team. It’s now their job to further engage the leads and push them down the sales funnel.

This strategy works pretty well, at least in terms of lead generation. With an average of 260 webinar registrations, you can expect around 117 people (about 45% of registrants) to attend the event, and get 47 qualified leads (up to 40% of the attendees) into your pipeline. Not bad at all, is it?

When it comes to conversion, however, the numbers are not as great. As mentioned earlier, some sources report that on average, between 2% and 5% of attendees will become paying customers. That’s only 6 sales out of 117 people attending your event!

So, here’s the question: who’s to blame if your webinar doesn’t bring the results you expect conversion-wise?

The answer isn’t that simple. It takes a combined effort of both marketing and sales teams to see a high conversion rate from your webinar. Only an effective collaboration between the two departments and full alignment of their efforts can bring the desired results.

So, if you think your job as a marketing manager is done once the webinar goes live, think again. There are many ways you can contribute to its success at this stage and later on. Let’s talk about some of them in more detail.

5 Tips To Boost Your Webinar Conversion Rates

  1. Align your sales and marketing efforts 

As mentioned above, effective collaboration between the marketing and sales departments is the key to successful webinar conversions. And the sooner you get your sales team to participate in your webinar preparations, the better. 

You can have a short brainstorming session together to map out the optimal follow-up strategy in advance, or at least make sure they know what topics you will cover and when the webinar will take place. 

It’s also a great idea to get your sales team to actually participate in the event, e.g., interact with the attendees and answer their questions on the spot, or even help you run it.

Pro tip: To make sure the leads don’t fall through the cracks along the way, consider automating the whole transfer process. For example, you can use Zapier to integrate Demio with your outreach automation platform and instantly add the generated leads to the corresponding campaign.

2. Pre-qualify your leads 

This step is important for two reasons: 

First of all, it allows you to take a closer look at your audience. For example, you can see whether your attendees match your customer persona or even re-consider your ideal customer profile based on the people who showed interest in your webinar.

Secondly, it’s a great opportunity to segment your leads based on their engagement at the webinar so the sales can tailor their follow-up strategy accordingly and, as a result, obtain a higher success rate.

To start with, sort out the leads who signed up and attended the webinar and those who didn’t attend. 

While both segments will appreciate an email with a webinar recording, sending the same template to all leads would be a huge mistake. After all, sending a “thanks for attending our webinar” email to people who didn’t actually attend it can hinder all your personalization efforts. 

Pro tip: In addition to boosting your webinar engagement, Demio interactive features like polls or chat can provide tons of valuable data about your attendees, such as their activity log. Needless to say, this data is very important when it comes to personalization.

3. Make sure to follow up as soon as possible

It is a good practice to send the webinar recording and presentation right after the event.

When it comes to sales follow-up, it usually takes several days to reach out to every lead on your list. This means your leads might not even remember what webinar you’re talking about by the time you contact them.

At the same time, if your webinar takes place in the evening, it’s better to wait till the next day to send your follow-up. Otherwise, your email might get buried in the prospect’s inbox by the time they get to work in the morning. 

That’s why we recommend sending the first follow-up email within 24 hours after the webinar

Pro tip: Speed up your follow-up process and easily engage your webinar leads at scale using outreach automation tools like Reply. Once you upload the contact list, manually or automatically using Zapier integration, you can set up an automated follow-up sequence (which we’ll talk about later) so you don’t have to email each contact manually.

4. Aim to establish a personal connection

As mentioned above, personalization is a vital element of a good conversion strategy. And while most webinar platforms, including Demio, allow you to set up an automated thank-you note to all attendees, platforms like Reply take it one step further and help you customize your emails as you see fit.

So, instead of a generic webinar follow-up with a recording and a survey, you can send personalized, targeted emails. This is where the information you’ve gathered at the pre-qualification stage comes in handy.

For example, you can use the lead’s webinar poll answers or questions as a conversation starter: ask why they left the webinar earlier (maybe they didn’t like it?), or inquire about their plans implementing the ideas you’ve shared.

Pro tip: It often makes sense to take a slightly different approach to each audience segment. Namely, you can hand over the warm leads who attended the webinar and interacted with you to the sales team right away. As for the leads who didn’t attend the webinar, it’s better to begin by adding them to a nurturing campaign first.

5. Connect with your leads across several channels

One of the benefits of email as a communication channel is that it’s non-intrusive. This means the recipient can open and answer your email whenever they want or are able. Yet, this is also one of its main drawbacks — with email, all you can do is wait or keep following up until they (hopefully) respond.

That is why we recommend engaging your webinar leads across several channels other than email, such as voice calls, social media, etc., to boost your success rate. Namely, research has found that making three or more touches with a prospect can increase your MQL-to-SQL rate by 28%.

So, when mapping out your webinar follow-up strategy, make sure to include at least three different touchpoints to your outreach campaign. 

Pro tip: For the optimal follow-up sequence performance, it’s better to use an effective mix of both automated and manual actions across different channels (you can find an example of such a sequence below 👇).

Creating a Successful Post-webinar Follow-up Sequence: Our Experience

The above-listed tips and best practices aren’t merely a theory we’ve come up with. All of them are based on our first-hand experience with sales outreach.

In fact, we hosted our first webinar just a couple of weeks ago, which was a great chance to battle test the described tactics. Below is the exact sequence, including the email follow-up templates, we’ve used to engage and convert our webinar attendees.

Step 1. Personalized thank-you email (including the webinar recording)

Greetings {First Name},

Thanks for attending our webinar this Tuesday on {webinar topic}

I’m sending you the link to the recording so you can access the webinar at any time.

After you’ve had a chance to watch a webinar, I’d love to share how others in your space are using {the strategies discussed at the webinar}.

Do you have 15 minutes this week to hop on a quick call to determine if there’s a fit?

Step 2. Social touch #1 (view Linkedin profile)

Step 3. Email follow-up #1

Hey {First Name},

Any questions on my previous note? Happy to provide more context around how {webinar subject}.

{FirstName}, it has to be at least worth exploring, right? How does your calendar look for a quick chat?

Step 4. Phone call

Step 5. Social touch #2 (connect on LinkedIn)

Step 6. Email follow-up #2

Hey {FirstName},

Hope you and your business are doing well.

We see ourselves as {your value proposition}.

Is that something you’d be interested in? I’d love to run through the details on a quick chat.

Looking forward to hearing back from you 🙂 

While the webinar follow-up sequences are still in progress, we are already seeing some promising results. Namely, the campaign targeting attendees saw around an 80% open rate and a little over 20% response rate (with around 10% being positive responses). 

The no-shows sequence had a slightly lower result, including a 64% open rate and a 6% reply rate (including 3% positive responses).

Conclusion

Offering a perfect mix of quality and quantity, webinars have become a go-to strategy for B2B lead generation. Yet, organizing a successful webinar is no easy task. 

That is why it’s so important to do your best and convert as much of the webinar leads as possible. With all the time and effort your team has invested, you simply can’t afford to let any of it be in vain.

So, when planning your next webinar, make sure to try at least some of the tactics mentioned in this article. Even if they’ll help you convert just an additional 1% of leads, it’s still worth a try.

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