Running a webinar is a task that many of us will have had to partake in during the past few months. In the current lockdown environment, most people are at home. And while some people have been furloughed, many are still working remotely. For some, this has meant learning new skills, taking on new information, training and advice from those who have had more experience working from home effectively.
As a direct result of more people working remotely, webinars have had a resurgence. Furthermore, they are a great way to share knowledge and expertise. Another key benefit is their ability to engage with your audience and build your company’s profile.
How to set up a webinar
Setting up a webinar is probably easier than you think. A quick Google search of “best webinar platforms” and you will find a whole host of brands offering their software with varying costs and features.
It’s important to note that each one will offer different features. So, make sure you do your research to find the one that best meets your needs.
The two big questions you need to be asking are:
- How to get more webinar attendees?
- How to ensure my webinar is effective?
How to get more bums on seats for your webinar
You should always make sure when planning and running a webinar that it is on a topic that people want to hear about. Also, that you are qualified to talk about it. If you’re not viewed as a person of authority within your industry, people will not value what you have to say.
To run a successful webinar it’s important to carefully consider what you know, and what you can genuinely bring to the table. What is it about your life, career, learnings, or expertise that will make people think: “I want to hear what they say about this”?
Also, it’s a good idea to make it really specific. For example, it shouldn’t be something broad like “Everything you need to know about marketing”. That is too vague and people generally don’t have the time to read on. Instead, focus your webinar on a particular area of expertise or specialism. Such as “Instagram marketing for beginners”. This makes it clear who your audience is and is much more specific and of interest to those who want to learn more about marketing via Instagram.
But don’t forget the previous point. You will need some Instagram marketing credentials and to walk the walk to pull in the crowds.
The four ‘Ps’ for webinar success
There’s no getting away from the fact that running a webinar that is successful requires a little bit of time and effort. Especially if you want to reap the benefits of it. Not only do you have to get people to attend and participate. You also have to create engaging, high-quality content. That’s why it’s so important to maximise your efforts.
For the most effective webinars we recommend using the four P process:
You might be tempted to just ‘wing it’ or start spreading the word before you’ve planned the content. However, it’s essential you get all your fundamentals in place first. This includes a landing page.
It’s a good idea to create a dedicated page for your webinar or series of webinars. This makes it easy for those interested in your webinar to find more information or contact you. With all the information they need, it will help nudge them over the line to book their place there and then. Therefore, ensure the landing page has a simple form to collect any customer data.
Email campaign – plan out an email journey for the attendee. For example, once someone books onto your webinar, ensure they’re enrolled in an email workflow. This should include a confirmation email, an event reminder email, a second event reminder email, and a thank you for attending email. Tools such as Mailchimp or Hubspot make planning automated email journeys easy.
Once you have a landing page for potential attendees to visit, emails written and automated, then you need to spread the word. Think about who your target audience is and make sure you’re generating interest in your area of expertise. The sooner you start this process the better. Which subsequently means the earlier you can prepare your webinar content the better it will be for your numbers.
As a result, you are almost guaranteed to reach your minimum expectations for bums on seats. With this in mind, you should be creating engaging content with blogs, social posts and video around your webinar subject area, gaining reputation, followers and a community within which you can leverage.
In addition, you should be promoting the webinar you are running wherever possible. Lastly, ensure that any graphics, titles, ads, etc are attention grabbing and make it clear what the webinar subject is from the get-go.
Now it’s time to bring your A game, which is why it’s so important to be prepared. You need to add value to your audience and ensure they feel like their time (and possibly money) has been well spent. Here are a few top tips:
- Rehearse your presentation (even if you don’t think you need to).
- Triple check the sound, screen and that the webinar technology is working (and the internet connection).
- Engage right from the offset with a personal story that relates to the overarching message of your webinar.
- Keep it simple. Don’t overload people with information and break it up with images.
Many businesses use webinars to generate leads and build brand awareness, which is why it is so important to follow up after the webinar. Just as in the prepare stage, it’s a good idea to create automated emails post-event to gather feedback, inform attendees about your next webinar and add value by providing them with further information such as blogs, user guides and white papers.
However, do not use this as an opportunity to hard sell. Instead, continue to deliver information you think will be valuable to the end user.
If you follow these top tips when running a webinar, we can almost guarantee your webinar to be a success. For help building your online profile or boosting your company’s online presence then get in touch. As a leading digital marketing agency we specialise in everything form PPC and SEO to Remarketing and Local Marketing so contact us today.
You might also want to check out Remote Work Survival Guide: Looking After Your Mental Health.