ReadyTalk

Meet with Confidence

Marketo Panel, Part 1: Great vs. Good Webinars

Posted by Anita Wehnert on
Share this Post:

Marketo webinars

 

 

 

 

 

This week, I had the opportunity to be part of a panel discussion at Marketo's Good to Great virtual event. The topic was making online events awesome. Tom Grubb from Marketo posed three questions to the panel:

  • What makes a great online event versus one that's just good?
  • What are the hot trends in online events?
  • What effect is social marketing having on online events?

This post is the first in a three-part series sharing my take on each question. What advice would you add for marketers?

Planning for Successful WebinarsWhat Makes a Great Online Event Versus One That's Just Good?

I think the single biggest thing that sets a great webinar apart in a sea of mediocre online events is PLANNING. Great events don’t happen by chance – a lot of time and energy went into every aspect of making them successful. Don’t shortchange yourself by not allowing adequate time upfront.

At ReadyTalk, we recommend starting the planning process at least 4 to 6 weeks prior to the live event. Each event can take 20-25 hours of preparation and planning.

Take time to consider your audience: What is a topic that is going to catch their attention? Who is the right speaker? What’s the best format for the event? Your job is to deliver content that is compelling to your audience in an interesting way.

Spend time on the event title and abstract – it can make or break your event. Tell people what they will learn and why they should give you their valuable time. Promise them actionable takeaways. Consider other formats like panel discussions or expert interviews vs. a traditional 1-hour webinar with slides.

Pull together a comprehensive strategy for promoting your event. You’ll need more than a mention on your website and an email invitation to drive registrations. Plan to leverage social channels, partners, your speaker’s professional network, community sites, paid search, and other tactics to get the message out there.

Don’t overwhelm prospects with a long registration form. Keep it short and sweet to increase conversions and then learn more about your audience during the live event.

Make sure everyone involved is prepared for the live event. You definitely don’t want to wing it. Hold a full dry-run with your speakers so everyone is well-versed on their portion of the presentation, in sync on hand-off points, etc.

Audience engagement doesn’t happen organically. Encourage it by building in opportunities throughout the session. Sprinkle in 2 or 3 polling questions. Invite your audience to join the conversation on Twitter.  Ask attendees to share their own stories and ideas via chat. Don’t subject your audience to “death by PowerPoint.” Weave in other types of content like video clips to keep things interesting.

Finally, have a follow-up plan before the event ends and act on it. Send your follow-up emails as soon as you can – preferably within hours of the live event. Get hot leads to sales right away so they can strike while the iron is hot. Answer any outstanding questions from the audience in a timely manner. Get your hands on the recording and start putting it to good use.

What tips do you suggest for planning for a webinar or web event?


Comments for Marketo Panel, Part 1: Great vs. Good Webinars

blog comments powered by Disqus

Recent Posts

New from ReadyTalk - Quick Share My Desktop

New from ReadyTalk - Quick Share My Desktop Hot off the press - we've just released an enhancement to our Quick Launcher product (available on Windows today and Mac next week). The...

Internet-wide Security Risk: How ReadyTalk is Addressing “Heartbleed”

It’s been all over the news: a major vulnerability in the encryption technology used across much of the Internet was recently discovered. The vulnerability causing these issues is...

Webinars: The Gateway Drug to a Video Marketing Strategy - Q&A Session Review

We recently hosted a webinar with the video marketing gurus over at Vidyard to dive into the idea of launching a video marketing strategy with the materials most of us already have...

Nobody is Watching Your Webinar and How to Fix It

Content is everywhere and in every form – videos, tweets, blogs, forums, whitepapers. I recently read an article that said by 2020 the amount of information on the Web is expected...

New from ReadyTalk - Modern meeting controls and VoIP enhancements

You may have noticed more frequent changes from ReadyTalk lately. In an effort to keep our controls fresh and functional for all of our different users we are continuously...

Comparing the Value of Webinar Leads vs. Email List Leads

Over time, marketers have innovated and refined many online avenues for lead generation, but the legacy email list continues to remain a top favorite. Viable alternatives, such as...

Feature Friday: How to Upload Your Video Clip

  Why Use this feature? I think it is safe to say that everyone hates when they see the word “download”. And the last thing someone wants when hosting a web conference is to lose...

The 8 Most Common Audio Conferencing Issues

Audio conferencing affects every area of business. From customer service to investor relations, poor audio quality is associated with a lack of professional competence. In order to...

Feature Friday: Promoting to Co-Presenter vs. Granting Control...What's the Difference?

Visit the ReadyTalk blog every Friday to learn more about a ReadyTalk feature.   We get a lot of questions on the difference between granting control and promoting someone...