In the past, webinars were a powerful digital tool to connect with your clients and generate sales.
But are webinars still relevant?
Despite the advancement of many other helpful digital strategies, webinars remain a relevant and effective tool.
Webinars are still incredibly relevant in 2021, the key is creating them to be engaging and compelling.
There are several webinar formats you can experiment with to connect with your target audience.
Today, we’ll dive into why webinars are still relevant and the ways you can best use them.
What’s a Webinar?
Webinars are online events used to market to your target audience. Think of it as a digital version of a presentation or speaking engagement.
The main objective of a webinar is to educate your clients and/or prospects about some key industry topic.
Businesses in all industries can leverage webinars to provide value to their target audience. By providing value and education via a webinar, you entice the attendees to purchase from you.
Types of Webinars
Many people envision a webinar as essentially a virtual class, but there are many ways to run a webinar. You can try several different styles, mix up your webinars, and use a style that best suits your content and audience. The types of webinars include:
- Class- Style Webinar. This is what most people picture. Generally, a class webinar has a speaker who is sharing insight and information. Essentially, they are running an online “lecture” on a relevant topic. This kind of webinar display thought leadership and can attract new leads
- Workshop. A workshop is meant to help people solve a real problem. It takes them through the solution throughout the webinar. This is a lead nurturing webinar that helps cultivate relationships. They work best with prospects who are already in your pipeline.
- Group coaching session. Group coaching webinar sessions are particularly effective for coaches. Whether you’re a fitness, wellness, or career coach, you can leverage group coaching sessions to work with your clients. Group sessions also allow clients to engage with and help each other. They are an excellent way to build a community around your brand and to maximize your time efficiency.
Top Benefits of a Webinar
Webinars allow you to reach an audience that you may not have physical access to. Many companies experienced the benefit of this during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the ability to connect with your audience virtually will remain important.
Here are some of the top benefits webinars offer:
- Brand Awareness. Webinars are another tool you can use to spread brand awareness and position yourself as a thought leader. You can use them to educate clients and provide value.
- Promote Products/Services. Leverage webinars to virtually display your products in a far more impactful way than a still image. You can answer questions about the products live and articulate the benefits of your product.
- Boost sales. Webinars are a strong marketing tool that you can use to attract customers. Ultimately, giving your customers insight and answers to important questions will drive their interest up and increase sales.
- Build relationships. Prospects only turn into buyers when they trust the product and brand. Webinars are a great way to build relationships with clients and earn their trust through quality interactions.
How to Create a Powerful Webinar Experience
To be effective, webinars should be engaging. Here are some of the best ways to create an effective webinar experience for your attendees:
- Relevant content. The success of a webinar starts with its content. The content must be relevant and interesting to your audience. Go beyond the basics that they already know to provide unique value.
- Thoughtful promotion. Increase interest in your webinar with thoughtful promotion. Ask a question or share a key insight about the topic of your webinar. Use social media to engage with potential attendees, and leverage partners to attract buzz.
- Connect people to the webinar. Rather than your “company” hosting a webinar, attach real names and faces to it. Highlight your host and guests to attract people to the webinar.
- Prepare technically. While technical issues aren’t 100% in your control, do everything you can to prepare for them. Check your internet connection, review your presentation, and make sure the webinar hosting service you use is reliable.
- Facilitate Interaction. Encourage viewers to interact throughout the webinar. This will help sustain their interest and lead to more conversions. To encourage interaction, allow viewers to ask questions throughout the webinar and answer them as you receive them. Start by asking some icebreaker questions and incorporate polls into your slide decks.
- Make a recording available. If you only make your webinar available live, you are missing many opportunities to connect with your clients. Everyone won’t be able to carve the time out to attend the live webinar. Making a recording available allows people to get value from your webinar when they can. Promote that your webinar will be available as a recording to boost registrations.
- Follow up with viewers. Use the webinar as a jumping-off point for building and strengthening relationships. Follow up with the attendees after the webinar. Send personalized outreach thanking them for their participation and asking for feedback.
When to Host a Webinar
When you host your webinar plays a role in how many people will attend. You want to hold webinars on the days and times your audience is most likely to tune in. However, webinar trends have shifted over time. Here are some important tips to consider when planning your webinar dates:
- Mid-week webinars have the greatest attendance, but any weekday is a good option. Experiment with your audience and ask for their input!
- The best days to send promotional emails are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday according to the 2020 Webinar Benchmarks Report
- On average, the best time for a webinar is 11:00 am PST. However, you must consider the best time for your audience. Aim for one hour before or after lunch in your time zone.
- Early webinars are on the rise. More webinars are happening at 8 and 9 am.
- Monitor evolving trends in webinar behavior to adjust accordingly
Webinars are by no means a thing of the past. In 2021 and beyond, they are an effective digital tool for connecting with your audience and building your brand. Businesses of all types can use webinars to interact with their prospects and build strong relationships.
The key to webinar success is design and execution. Using the tips above, you can create effective webinars that your audience will enjoy. Not only that, you can host webinars that will help you gain customers and grow your business. Now is the time to take advantage of the power of webinars and use them to your advantage.