Webinars are one of the most popular tools used by marketers for lead generation. Not only are they great for generating demand but they’re also a less pushy way of nurturing cold leads.
The reason is that you are offering to provide information that your audience will value in your webinars. You can also demonstrate your expertise and showcase your knowledge of the industry and domain using webinars.
However, webinars can be truly beneficial for your company if they are planned and implemented well. Here, we’ll take a look at some of the things you need to do to ensure your webinar is a success.
#1. Where Should You Host Your Webinar?
When you select your webinar platform, make sure that it supports your audiences to connect via multiple media. For example, it should allow attendees to join the webinar by phone, computers, or even mobile apps.
A good platform should allow you to manage registrations easily, and shouldn’t have any limitations on the number of attendees. It should have interactive capabilities using which your audience can ask questions or provide answers.
Your platform should also be capable of recording the presentation and attendee information. Using this you can easily send follow-up emails to your attendees once the webinar is over.
Popular webinar platform, ClickMeeting includes interactive tools like polls and surveys. It also allows you to collect feedback from your audience and analyze it to make improvements. It even allows attendees to join the webinar using toll-free numbers so they don’t require internet access.
Image via ClickMeeting
#2. When Should You Host Your Webinar?
A study by ON24 shows that Wednesdays and Thursdays bring in the highest number of webinar attendees. So if you host your webinar on these days, it is likely to be more successful.
Image via ON24
The study also shows that 11 am PST (2 pm EST) is the best time to host a webinar.
Image via ON24
If you’re unsure about the best time to schedule your webinar, you can use Google Analytics to analyze your traffic. Based on that you’ll get to know the geography from where you get most of your traffic. Then schedule the time accordingly.
#3. How Should You Promote Your Webinar?
You can promote your upcoming webinar on all of your marketing channels, such as your website, blog, and social media. However, emails have proved to be the most successful in promoting and driving webinar registrations.
A very important factor to ensure the success of your webinar is to select the right audience. Instead of simply sending an email blast to everyone in your contacts, send it to the ones who will truly care. Depending on the topic you have chosen, conduct extensive research to find people who might be interested in it.
Tools such as Narrow can help you here. Narrow helps you identify Twitter users who are talking about a certain topic. By using this tool, you can find your target audience who will be keen to attend your webinar.
Once you’ve identified them, you can make use of tools like Voila Norbert to find their corporate email addresses. Send your promotional emails to this set of people and your chances of having a successful webinar will increase dramatically.
#4. When Should You Promote Your Webinar?
A webinar needs to be promoted at least 3-4 weeks prior to the day it is scheduled. A study by ON24 shows that 25% of registrations occur on the day of the webinar. However, another 23% occurs more than 2 weeks before the webinar. So if you start early, you have a good chance of driving a larger number of registrations.
Image via ON24
This study also shows that Tuesday, Wednesdays, and Thursdays are the best days to send promotional emails.
Image via ON24
#5. How Should You Pick Your Content?
When you pick a content, make sure that it is something that your audience cares about. Try to do a deep-dive into that topic and provide actionable takeaways to your audience. It doesn’t matter if it takes time, it needs to be valuable for your viewers. Also, use images and charts that are visually appealing and intuitive to make it more engaging.
#6. How Long Should Your Webinar Be?
The ON24 study actually suggests that longer webinars are better appreciated by audiences. This makes them believe that they will get valuable insights and information and a topic will be covered in details.
According to the study, an attendee stays in the webinar for an average duration of 55 minutes. So for optimum results, you should keep your webinar duration between 45 and 60 minutes.
Image via ON24
#7. How Can You Engage Your Audience Better?
In order to make your audience truly engaged, you must make your presentation interactive. Ask questions at the end of every 3-4 slides. Also, ask your audience if they have any questions they’d like to be answered. Save around 30 minutes at the end of your presentation for a formal Q&A session.
It is a good idea to incorporate a question-answer mechanism on your webinar platform. Using this, any time that someone has any question, they can simply type it in. At the end of a section of your presentation, you can answer these questions. Or you can also have an assistant who types in the answers to audience questions as and when they ask.
Practice your presentation as many times as possible prior to the webinar. If you fumble with your content, it won’t be a good experience for your listeners. Practicing is also a way to ensure that there are no technical glitches in the webinar.
To make the webinar truly successful, always send your attendees an email with the recording and thank them for attending. You should also ask them to share their feedback.
Including some freebies is a good way of incentivizing people to share feedback and attend future webinars. Also, make sure that you send a recording of the webinar to people who had registered but failed to show up.
Use each webinar as a learning experience to improve the next one. Take some time at the end of each webinar to evaluate how it went. What worked, what didn’t and where you can improve. Feedback from your attendees can give you some great insights into what can be done better in the next webinar.
What are some of the best practices you use to make your webinars successful? Let us know in the comments below.