During the pandemic, we experienced an abrupt shift toward the digital world. Now that the height of Covid-19 has subsided, it’s clear webinars have become a permanent fixture of marketing strategies, accounting for a large portion of the events run today and in the future. And no wonder, as webinars have proven to be a powerful tool for businesses to build authority, engage with their customers, and drive sales.
With their interactive features like chat, Q&A sections, and surveys, webinars provide a rich opportunity for engagement and two-way communication. Also, by presenting your expertise in a certain subject and giving your audience answers to their key pain points, you convince them you’re an industry thought leader, which gains their trust.
Most importantly, you meet your prospects where they are and lead them down the sales funnel more naturally. Your webinar content can showcase your audience’s problems and deliver a solution with your value proposition; when they hear it, they already know it’s exactly what they need. But let’s take it from the top.
A webinar is an online event that people watch, either live or via recording, to learn about a specific topic. Although they started out as educational resources for remote learners, they now serve a wide variety of purposes, from lead generation to new product launches or direct sales.
Why You Should Host a Webinar
Business owners leverage webinar promotion to generate leads, build brand awareness, reach a wider audience, and more. We’ve highlighted the main business benefits of incorporating webinars into your marketing strategy.
Generate Qualified Leads
Webinar sign-up forms are a great source of lead information. They prove people are interested in what you have to say and are willing to provide their names and email addresses as part of the registration process.
Webinar attendees register because they expect to gain helpful tips. Your task is to share educational webinar content to qualify leads and showcase your unique selling proposition and niche expertise.
Expand Your Email List
When people register for a webinar, you acquire email recipients and collect additional information like their location or job title. You can use that data to manage and segment your email list and engage subscribers with relevant email campaigns.
Additionally, you can harness personalization features included in top-notch email marketing automation tools to customize your webinar reminder or follow-up emails and master your email marketing efforts.
They’re Cost-Effective and Convenient
Unlike in-person events, webinars are effective without costing a fortune. The cost per attendee is low and remains the same no matter how many people attend. To host a successful event, invest in a webinar service that guarantees a fixed price no matter how many webinars you create.
You’ll also need a stable broadband connection, a computer with a webcam, and valuable content to share with your audience that they can watch at their convenience from the comfort of their homes.
Repurpose Webinar Content
One of the best ways to achieve positive webinar ROI is to repurpose its content continually, which you can do in several ways.
Share a webinar recording with prospects who couldn’t make it, post short clips to your social media accounts, or urge attendees to share them with their own social media following. Also, leveraging your presentation script to craft infographics or blog posts is a versatile content marketing tactic to reach a wider audience.
6 Tips for Hosting an Engaging Webinar
Hosting a webinar is a great method to achieve growth and showcase value. However, presenting at an online event can be more intimidating than in front of a live audience. To help you overcome the challenge, let’s unpack six webinar hosting tips to ensure an engaging experience for your attendees.
1. Embrace Interactive Tools
The mistake most webinar speakers make is missing the amazing opportunity for conversational engagement. Take advantage of your webinar software’s built-in features such as real-time polls and Q&As to hold attendees’ attention and transform the passive process of watching a webinar into active participation.
To make it even more interactive, consider activating the live chat feature so the speaker(s) can ask and respond to questions in real-time. This type of engagement is essential if you want to do more than simply share informative content. What’s more, identifying frequently asked questions in your webinars provides useful information on how to refine your sales tactics and give participants what they need before they even ask.
If you fail to incite meaningful interactions, it could indicate you targeted the wrong audience or didn’t give them what they wanted. Either way, interactive webinar tools open up a great opportunity to improve your content and targeting, as well as achieve higher webinar ROI.
2. Skip the Plain Presentation
When hosting a webinar, most people opt for plain presentation formats that are at best combined with a Q&A session. However, shaking things up is key to preventing your audience from drifting off.
After a big chunk of content, try to inject short breaks. During these breaks, you can use a live vote tool to ask your audience’s opinion or check their understanding of the webinar content. Not all attendants are high-quality leads, so you need to understand their backgrounds and their stage within your virtual event funnel. These insights are crucial to figuring out why some of them won’t move forward with a conversion.
It’s equally important to experiment with presentation media. If all the speaker does is look at the camera and drone on about the topic, it could become static. Depending on your industry and offering, you might employ demo videos to showcase your product, visual demonstrations on how to solve usage issues or even a whiteboard for diagrams.
How attendees choose to participate in a live webinar (Source)
3. Inspire competition
A little healthy competition can prove beneficial. By bringing out your audience’s competitive nature, you break the ice while simultaneously entertaining them. Whether you opt for a fun quiz or a live Q&A, make sure to launch it right before your attendees’ level of concentration is about to decrease.
You could test your audience’s knowledge of the topic at the beginning of your webinar or towards the end as an exciting recap to check what they learned. No need for complicated questions — just a bit of creativity and fun. The more people engage with your brand in a fun way, the more likely they are to understand how your value proposition helps them solve their everyday challenges and decide to give it a shot.
4. Run Giveaways
The competition might get things going, but people love to win too. You can enrich your attendees’ experience with a giveaway that’ll motivate them to participate actively. Giveaways and prizes are great for incentivizing webinar activity and generating more attendants. They can also help you market your event beforehand and convince more people to register.
You could offer prizes like branded items or educational material on making the most of your product or service. Alternatively, offering free attendance for one of your future events is a win-win situation since both parties have something to gain.
Announce the giveaway at the beginning of your webinar to have people sitting on the edge of their seats until the end. When that comes, select your winner and announce them along with the prize.
5. Reward Attendees
Following up with attendees once the event ends is a great opportunity to keep them engaged and increase webinar ROI. Try to provide a small token of appreciation for their webinar attendance like relevant resources or, in the case of a professional-oriented webinar, a certificate of completion. Remember to send an email with the recording link for them to re-watch on their own time or share with their team or social media connections.
This type of initiative enables you to continue lead nurturing even after the formal event. While your webinar attendees grow more acquainted with your brand and product or service through valuable resources, you gain important insights into what drives them to seek you out. This information will reveal how to improve your webinar ROI formula.
6. Ask for Feedback
After rewarding registrants is the time to collect valuable feedback through a post-event survey. Make it short, but don’t limit yourself to yes or no questions or a generic star rating. As an example, let’s say you just completed a webinar on how to create high-converting real estate landing pages. When building your feedback survey, you should focus on questions that’ll help you shape your future content strategy, such as:
- What was your key takeaway from the webinar?
- What webinar sections could prove useful resources for your business needs?
- What kind of information were you looking for that we failed to cover?
Then, review all the information acquired through the feedback survey and make adjustments to improve future webinar presentations, ranging from the event formatting to the target audience. By constantly tweaking your webinar elements based on follow-up feedback, you increase your chances of producing the desired ROI.
For most brands, marketing webinars are an essential part of their overall business strategy. However, dull presentations with dry facts and numbers won’t cut it. Attendees need an engaging experience that meets (and exceeds) their expectations from beginning to end.
Excite your audience through interactive elements to break the monotony and offer small incentives to make them feel appreciated. Be sure to collect their feedback to determine if you conveyed your main points and analyze your webinar’s success. By following the webinar hosting tips shared in this article, you’ll master future webinar promotions and achieve your desired results for conversions and revenue.