20th Oct, 2020
, , Designation
The business ground has seen a shift. It is not what it used to be. With the social and economic challenges, past few months have been spent realigning business priorities, and the corresponding sales and marketing efforts. Tactics that were successful earlier may not be yielding the same results today, and hence it is about focusing on tools and practices that can help get the customer mindshare in this forced virtual age. Today, marketers need to be far more agile, creative and accountable than ever before. The need to identify new routes for building a solid sales funnel is at its peak.
Whether we talk about brand awareness, building thought leadership or focused lead generation, one tactic that is top priority for marketers today is webinars, especially in the B2B domain. While offline events are seeming a distant reality for at least some more time now, webinars are donning a cape and emerging as superheroes. As per a 2019 GoToWebinar study, 73 percent of marketers find webinars to be one of the most efficient ways to create new opportunities for their business. Come March 2020 – the number of online events increased by a whopping 330 percent on a particular platform. Webinars are not new, however their importance has only escalated in this pandemic era and they are now placed on the “hot” seat with everyone looking at them for turning around things and making the pipeline graph soar high again.
Webinar can be of multiple kinds – educational, thought leadership driven or one that’s focused on building a lead pipeline. Whatever be the objective, the strategy and clear approach to drive measurable results should always stay in sight. A study in fact states that 20 percent of webinar attendees have the potential to turn into paid customers. Now that’s a high return marketing investment!
While search engine would throw multiple results on how you should be hosting the perfect webinar that keep the pipeline register ringing, let me focus on callouts purely based on experience that you should just not miss!
- Setting Webinar Goal is decisive – A webinar doesn’t stand on its own. Approaching your webinar without a clear idea of your end goal would lead to failure. What is it that you are trying to achieve from the webinar? Well, the answer lies in the funnel. Therefore, with a defined objective in place, don’t bother selling, but informing.
- Zero in on Audience Targeting– It’s not about “how many” attendees you get in the webinar. It’s about “who”. Are they important to your business and the objective you are driving? Consider asking yourself this question and focus on getting the right audience.
- Ace the art of Webinar Follow-up– Just like you, there are far too marketers focusing on driving their agenda through webinars, and some of them could also be clashing with your objective. How do you then ensure top-of-the-mind recall? Consider tactics that can keep reminding people who have registered to join for your online event, without being overtly pushy.
- Be seen with Smart Promotions– It is important to be visible to drive the point above. Investment on digital tactics is important and work on your smart promotional plan. Don’t end up wasting time, effort and budget that goes unnoticed. So make sure, news about your webinar should be everywhere.
- Make your Webinar Conversational, Not a Presentation– Please don’t be robotic in your webinars. It’s after all humans on both sides. Make the webinars conversational and engaging. Add polls, Q&A slots, thought-provoking questions, focus a lot on your presentation and script. Of course, some intelligent humour always helps to keep the conversation lively.
- Don’t forget to Nurture. There’s just too much going around, and people can easily forget you. Your follow-up with webinar leads should not go beyond 24 hours ideally – and that can even be a quick thank you email with the webinar recording that they can share with peers.
Webinar is an event (though online) – there’s pre event work, event work and post event work. Planning needs to focus on all three stages equally to be able to drive the desired result. Potential leads can slip through the cracks at any stage if the steps are not tied properly. However, many marketers also lack the resources to make this work seamlessly, which is where experienced partners can help.
If you are still contemplating whether you should incorporate webinar in your marketing strategy, now is the time to start.
The article originally appeared here.