What is a webinar and how to make a highly effective one

Have you ever thought about holding a unique and fun business event for your target audience and your customers? An event with engaging content, interactive exercises, and networking, all with the potential to improve your brand awareness and convert more potential customers into paying customers to increase your revenue.

The statistics do not lie, according to GoToWebinar , webinars (or web conferences) are one of the three types of content most consumed in B2B channels and that improve engagement. Creating a highly efficient webinar requires meeting the three basic characteristics of quality content: unforgettable, entertaining, and useful.

These characteristics may change with respect to the implementation of inbound marketing depending on your business and the industry in which you work. However, a webinar is one of the best ways to get better qualified leads.

What is a webinar or webinar?

A webinar is a video webinar on a specialized topic. It is done over the internet and is usually shared in real time, although it can also be recorded in advance. You must allow the participation of the audience either to ask questions, comments or collaborate with the presenter.

A webinar is the equivalent of giving a conference with the only difference that you do not physically see the audience. Do not panic! It is not something so formal, since you can do it from your home.

How does a webinar work?

The host (and other presenters, if any) should set a date and time for the event and invite audience members to register and attend. Then, you organize the event with the help of webinar software.

The webinar should educate, demonstrate, instruct or explain something to your attendees and help your company position itself as an expert in your industry, improve brand awareness and increase conversions and sales. It is recommended that whether your webinar is live or not, it should always be recorded; this way you will have those files for future reference on your website, since webinars are usually an excellent source of permanent content.

Additionally, you can share your webinar content through a resource library on your website, so your site visitors, customers, and team members can easily check it from one location at any time.

What is a webinar for?

Webinars allow companies to create interactive events for their clients and potential clients, regardless of their physical location. They can be used to generate leads and conversions, improve brand awareness and increase revenue .

Elements of a webinar

  • Main event
  • Host and presenter (s)
  • Assistants
  • Desktop or laptop computer with camera and microphone
  • Presentation (usually in the form of slides)
  • Interactive element for attendees to participate (for example, survey, poll, or discussion)
  • Webinar Software

If you want to have a clearer idea of ​​what a webinar looks like, we recommend you see this one that we did together with the Twitter team: #TweetSmarter , where you will learn how to increase your conversions on this social network. This is a presentation-style webinar where each PowerPoint slide is discussed and the speaker appears in a small window as if they were in a video conference.

Benefits of a webinar

Webinars give companies the opportunity to host an interactive digital event for members of a target audience and customers, no matter where they are. They are an effective way to reach many people. Below we will analyze some of its benefits in more detail:

Customize the content

Webinars are an easy way to create unique and personalized content for your brand, as you can include a variety of presentation features to enhance the experience for viewers and audience members, such as drawing tools, interactive activities, slides, surveys. , chat and more.

Low cost

Webinars are inexpensive. Think of it this way: if you were to host an event in person with your target audience and clients, chances are you’ll have to rent a space, order food, buy presentation equipment, pay for cleaning, etc. While if you do a webinar you are going to save money and you can even organize it for free.

Educate prospects and customers about your product or service

Webinars are an easy way to educate your audience. You can choose to explain the benefits of your product or service, review capabilities and features, or even focus on how you solve the challenges of your current buyers and customers.

Demonstration of your product or service

In addition to educating attendees, you can also provide an instructional demonstration on how they can use or implement your product or service.

Positioning

By hosting a webinar, you can establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry. If you regularly organize educational webinars, through which attendees get practical advice with which they can learn something new, you are more likely to gain more authority in your industry. 

Increase awareness

Webinars are another way to increase awareness, since you can target your target audience and encourage members of your audience to share it with other people and, in this way, reinforce the recognition of your brand. Make sure you do proper Webinar Marketing

Drive conversions

You can use webinars as a source of conversions and income by establishing yourself as a thought leader. Prospects will be more inclined to trust you, and therefore your product or service. Also, as you promote and share your webinar, increased awareness will lead to higher conversions. 

7 common webinar formats

  • Expert Panel
  • Interview
  • Presentation or demonstration of product or service
  • Questions and answers
  • Instructive
  • Casual chat
  • Case study

Panel of experts

With this format it is possible to attract more audience; You can invite an industry expert, either internal or external to your company, to discuss whatever is around your business.

Interview

Think about the various topics that your audience members want to hear, and then find a suitable interviewer and interviewee to set up an interview. It could be an internal or external thought leader, a member of your team, a current and loyal customer, or even someone outside of the industry.

Presentation or demonstration of product or service

This webinar format provides your audience with a presentation or demonstration of your product or service, in order to clearly present the benefits and applications of what you are selling. 

Questions and answers

In this type of format you can invite a member of your board of directors to organize the questions and answers and have the employees (sales representatives, service representatives, marketers, product managers, etc.) answer the questions they have members of the audience. 

Instructions

With a webinar you can teach your target audience how to do something, for example achieve a goal. Take a good look at your buyers and review what their challenges are, choose one of those obstacles and offer them an instruction on how they can solve it effectively. 

Casual chat

Whether with a member of your team or an outside leader, this webinar format allows you to create a casual chat with your target audience. In this way, audience members can tune in, sit back, and enjoy a natural conversation by asking questions and generating new directions during a discussion. 

Case study

With this webinar format you can invite customers to attend to talk about how your product or service has solved various challenges from one of your loyal customers. Look at your case studies and select which one is the most compelling to show. 

Now that you know what the different webinar formats consist of and what they are for, we will tell you how to create a highly effective webinar.

How to Create a Highly Effective Webinar or Webinar: 13 Tips

  • Make your content go according to what your buyer personas are looking for.
  • Use a provider that allows you to have a registration URL.
  • Create a registration landing page for easy tracking.
  • Design and implement a strategic promotion campaign.
  • Make a promotional video.
  • Automate email promotion using workflows.
  • Set expectations for participation and record your webinar to use as content.
  • Design a visual campaign.
  • Don’t read from a slide or forget an agenda.
  • Decide what format you will use.
  • Create a communication system with your audience.
  • Get the sales actions in tune.
  • Do an essay.

Make your content go according to what your buyer personas are looking for

Take a good look at your target audience’s information searches and find an attractive topic and headline. For example, SEMRush did a webinar on Link Building, but instead of calling it “How to make Backlinks” they titled it Advance Link Building Ideas, Q&A with Jaydip Parikh to make it more interesting.

Use a provider that allows you to have a registration URL

Contact the software provider for the webinar service, who will provide you with a link for registrations. The best ones are in English, although they are very intuitive and easy to use. Our suggestions are:

  • GoToWebinar : it is a classic of webinars. He has plans starting at 89 USD per month, his results are impeccable and of good quality. It is convenient for you if you offer several webinars per month. 
  • WebEx : another classic, even cheaper, with different plans and supports webinars of up to 300 attendees.
  • AnyMeeting : It’s free for 30 days on all your plans, ranging from 50 to 1,000 attendees.
  • Zoom : has monthly or annual plans that allow from 100 to 10,000 participants. 
  • ClickMeeting : you can use its trial version for 30 days with plans from 10 to 1,000 attendees. 

Create a registration landing page for easy tracking

It is very important to create a landing page for each webinar. This will help you to detail all the information of the event and, in addition, to manage that database as part of your lead nurturing actions. 

All you have to do is ask for the visitor’s email address, as well as their name and organization. If you want to know more about their activities, you can ask them to select what their interest is in your content: if they are specialized agencies looking for technical knowledge, if they are companies looking for suppliers or simply are professionals who want to delve into a topic. 

Keep in mind that the more fields they have to fill in, the fewer the number of responses . This can bring benefits if you are looking for a small audience that is highly interested in your offer.

Confirm that the webinar registration is complete for each attendee who has registered. You can do this by sending those who have signed up to a new landing page with the confirmation details. Another option is to send follow-up email to attendees shortly after registration is complete.

Design and implement a strategic promotional campaign

You can’t expect your webinar registrations to come alone. Establish a tactical plan on how you are going to promote it: from 12 posts related to the topic on your blog (3 a week in the previous month), through graphics, infographics for posts on social networks, as well as email marketing campaigns.

You can also use paid posts on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. My recommendation is to start the promotion at least 3-4 weeks before the day of the event with more frequent appearances as the date approaches. 

Make a promotional video

Develop a 40-second video to describe what people will learn in the seminar. You will be surprised how well this video promotion works, as we are becoming more visual.

Automate email promotion using workflows

Prepare the workflow, or flow, of approximately four different emails to promote your webinar. You will send the first one a month before the webinar, the second three weeks before; the third, a week before; while the fourth, 2 hours before starting the transmission. It may seem like a lot of emails, but most people register shortly before the event .

Include details in your messages about the equipment needed to participate in the webinar, such as a laptop with stable Wi-Fi, speakers, a microphone, and a camera. You can also provide information about your presenters or the interactive element of the webinar to excite attendees. 

Provide clear instructions on how your attendees will join or view the event. For example, you can include a link to join or watch the webinar in the email two hours before the broadcast begins. 

Set expectations for participation and record your webinar to use as content

Webinars should be interactive, so it’s important that you set expectations early on and have your presenters reiterate them at the start of the event, so everyone is on the same page. If your webinar is live, facilitate participation and discussion throughout the event, or set aside time for discussion and questions and answers at the end. 

If the webinar is prerecorded, set a window of time after it has been shared for attendees to submit questions. Presenters can then record or write responses and send them to the appropriate attendee.

In any case, don’t forget to record the webinar you are doing . This will allow you to have the content that will generate leads for much longer. Once the webinar is done, you must send a thank you email to all registered with a link to that recording, which you will locate on your thank you page. 

Design a visual campaign

Develop a campaign with images and infographics to publish from three weeks before. Every day you can publish (both on social networks and on your blog) with the link that your registration landing page takes. Remember that most registrations are not generated on social networks, but they are the most important means to create expectations.

Don’t read from a slide or forget an agenda

Since you will be giving a webinar focused on the area in which you are an expert, you must show fluency and confidence in what you say. It is not recommended that you use your slides, infographics or any other visual support as a substitute for your speech, nor is it necessary that you follow a script to the letter.

The best thing is that you write a short agenda and some phrases that help you guide the conversation. Write these guidelines and captions so that there is a common thread throughout the session. 

Decide what format you will use

Will you be the only speaker for this webinar? Do not forget that you can have guests who add value according to your agenda. You can even have presenters to help encourage the audience to generate positive expectations for the meeting. 

You can also opt for a panel discussion with other speakers or with attendees. This will be very useful if you decide that there will be a maximum of 20 or 30 people, with whom you can talk openly, especially if they are specialists in a niche or representatives of companies with similar challenges. Anyway, explore all the formatting options you already know.

Create a communication system with your audience

Choose a tool that allows you to communicate with your followers and with each of the people who decided to enter the webinar. Most programs allow a chat window where you can read their questions. Later in this article we mention some free software for doing a webinar.

You can also leave a questionnaire open on your landing page where participants submit questions in advance. This will also help you organize your agenda and know what specific approaches your audience is interested in. 

Get sales actions in tune

Whether you have a sales team or you do this work on your own, it is important that you know what you will do with all the leads you generate. Create segmented mailing lists, according to the content needs of the attendees and make your offer arrive at the right times. 

If your webinar was to promote a product or service, you can follow up by email two or three days later. This way you can ask after-sales questions for those who did buy your offer or specific questions for those who did not, but are interested. 

Do an essay

Create a rehearsal webinar a day or two before the actual presentation. Ask some of your followers or friends to attend the virtual event to check that everything works correctly: from the audio and video to the live chat. This way you will be sure that you will know how to solve technical problems in case they occur. 

Author: Jaydip

Entrepreneur, Blogger, Digital Marketing Speaker & Trainer, Inbound Marketing Consultant, SEO-Social Media Adviser. Founder of Tej SolPro. Proudly Indian.

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