Back in the late 90s, Microsoft provided the technology for webinars to go public with the launch of the platform – NetMeeting. Webinars have come a long way since its inception. As we approach 2020, the next stage of digital marketing has already begun taking shape. Exceptional user experiences as well as UI designs of all content including webinars have become essential. AI has enabled data privacy and cybersecurity to take a front seat and digital platforms have to be designed with the upcoming 5G revolution in mind.
In light of these upcoming disruptions, enterprises will have to rethink the way they approach webinars in order to stay ahead of the curve. A lot of the times, marketing strategies that chase higher attendance rates lose focus on the bigger picture i.e. creating the highest quality, most audience-focused content possible. Getting your audience to click on your webinar link is only half the battle. The make-or-break situation lies in keeping them intrigued with valuable information for 30-45 minutes.
Keeping that in mind, let’s take a look at 5 crucial webinar strategies that marketers may often end up overlooking.
1. Nail your invitation emails
An optimal sequence of webinar invitation emails would look like this:
First contact- invitation email 3-4 weeks prior
Reminder email- 2 weeks priors
Second Reminder email – 1 week prior
Last Reminder – 1 day prior
Feedback/Thank You Email – 1-day post
The best time to start sending out your promotional email invitations would be around 3-4 weeks prior to the webinar event. Yes, the first invitation emails have to be spot-on and it’s important that you leave no useful information behind, but what is even more critical is the follow-up and reminder emails. A typical email open rate in B2B is just 15.1% so having periodic follow-up emails is vital for maximum exposure. According to Drip, “Not following up your webinar invitations may cause you to lose up to a third of your sales. Ideally a first follow up email should be sent 1-2 weeks post your first invitation”. Here is an example of how foundr does reminder emails:
2. Choose the right mediums for promotion
In order to draw more participation, you need to promote your webinars on the right channels to gain maximum exposure. Having an Omni-channel approach to promoting your webinars will provide you with the maximum outreach.
Partnering up with the correct influencer for your niche can be the perfect way to generate more traction for your webinars. Influencers usually use their social media presence to create awareness for your webinars with headlines like: ‘I’ll be attending XYZ webinar on intent marketing; it’s a great way for marketers to stay in the loop for current marketing trends’. Having the right influencers endorsing your brand will certainly make a huge difference in how your contacts in the industry approach your webinar invitations.
For B2B trends look no further than LinkedIn. Share your webinar registration forms with connections and don’t forget to attach a personalized inmail along with it. You can also create events on Facebook and promote your webinar on Twitter through relevant hashtags.
3. select the optimal webinar software
Hosting a live webinar can come with a lot of technical challenges. Poor connectivity, audio quality, random disconnects can become a real hindrance to your webinar success. Days of one-directional discourse in webinars are over, audience engagement and interactive tools for active participation are essential. Keeping that in mind, some of the factors you need to consider while selecting your webinar software platform include:
• Compatibility with browsers and operating systems
• Having a user-friendly interface with easy navigation
• Extremely hassle-free and quick setup and boot time
• The number of attendees the software can handle
• Automatic Live recording and replay integration
• Auto-responder features
• Must have interactive tools
Considering these points here are some of the best webinar software solutions that you can choose:
4. plan according to viewer timezones
Timing is everything, whether it is setting up weekend promotional offers or holiday season campaigns. When setting up your webinars, factor in your audience background and location. Certain days and times will definitely work better when trying to attract the largest audience possible.
When it comes to business-related webinars, overwhelmingly the data shows Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays are most likely to get maximum attendance.
As for the timings, a recent survey by GoToWebinar showed 11am to be the most engaging with 2-3 pm coming in as the second most preferable timeslot.
5. exceptional audio quality
When it comes to communication, only 7% of the meaning is derived from the words we use while 38% comes from the tone of voice and the remaining 55% from non-verbal cues. Needless to say, while hosting a webinar, audio quality is way too critical to neglect. Poor audio is bound to cause an instant turn-off and spoil all the efforts you have made to get your viewers to the webinar in the first place. If you end up sounding distant or crackling, it will seriously impact what otherwise might have been an exceptional message.
Webinars are an effective way to build sustaining connections with your prospects and clients while simultaneously allowing you to distinguish your brand from your competitors. With evolving buyer preferences and video consumption stats rising through the roof, marketers will need to get creative and evolve their webinar strategies overtime. Use these tips as a base for weaving your own creative webinar strategy. For further in-depth analysis, you can also check out our webinar benchmarks report here.