You’ve no doubt attended a few webinars over the last year, but have you considered hosting one to benefit your business? Thanks to COVID restrictions, and a change in how we’re all working, webinars have had a recent resurgence in popularity. With live events and business meetings practically non-existent over the past year, webinars have been plugging the gap. And, with 73% of B2B marketers citing them as the best way to generate high-quality leads, they also present a vital sales opportunity! In this article, we look at the four ways webinars benefit your business and how to create them.
What are webinars?
Before we go any further, let’s define what webinars are. The term “webinar” is an amalgamation of the words “web” and “seminar”. They typically take the form of a workshop, lecture or presentation that’s delivered online using webinar software. If you’re looking for a way to educate your customers, engage your leads, or even train your staff, then webinars could fit the bill!
4 ways webinars benefit your business
Webinars offer a host of benefits for your business (and its customers), including:
1) Value for money
You don’t need a massive budget to create a webinar. And, you’ll certainly save on travel, venue, catering, and other costs associated with in-person seminars or events. If you record your webinar, it can also be used at a later date or repurposed – offering your business even more value!
2) Convenience and scalability
Compared to live events, webinars are much easier to organise. With no restrictions on seat numbers or tickets, you can also accommodate additional participants at short notice!
3) Building awareness
Webinars allow your business to create a buzz and a sense of occasion around what you do. The fact that they aren’t location-specific also gives you the opportunity to extend your market reach to those who may have been unable to attend an in-person event.
4) Growing your list and generating high-quality leads
Webinars are a fantastic tool for establishing your business as a thought-leader and educating your audience about your products or services. This will have a knock-on effect on your business’ credibility and will encourage participants to subscribe to your mailing list. You’ll also gain a host of useful data from participant registrations! In fact, 76% of marketers claim that webinars help them reach more leads.
How to create a successful webinar
1) Choose the right topic
The first step you need to take is deciding on a topic that’s relevant to your business and that’s of value to your target audience. Consider your USPs, areas of expertise, and what your audience wants to know. Don’t choose a topic that’s too broad, but pinpoint an area to explore in detail.
2) Select the format
There are several popular formats to choose from, including Q&As, panel discussions, interviews, product demos, and presentations!
3) Choose a platform
Make sure that your webinar platform is compatible with the number of participants and the desired format of your webinar. There are several hosting platforms to choose from, including Livestorm, Demio, WebinarJam, and GoToWebinar.
4) Create your content
Your content will depend on your chosen format. If you’re opting for a panel-discussion, collect questions from your audience or write your own. If you’re planning a presentation, create slides with key points to cover and interesting visuals.
5) Promote your webinar
Next, comes the fun part of generating interest about your webinar! Create a landing page for people to sign up, and promote your webinar on your social media channels and to your existing mailing list. Follow up with a few reminders for attendees (including one on the day) with a link to the event!
6) Run the webinar
At the start of lockdown, I wrote a guide to actually running webinars, with practical tips on how to engage the audience, technical best practice, security advice and more. Improve your own webinars by following the best practice webinar guide here.
7) Follow up
Last but not least, thank participants for attending and ask for their feedback. Where relevant, be sure to include a recording of the webinar in your follow-up message!
With webinars offering significant benefits for relatively little expense and organisation, they’re certainly an area worth investigating. With the majority of the population still relying heavily on technology for information and social interaction, it could be the perfect time to create one!