This post is the second in a three-part series sharing my take on each question from a panel discussion at this week's Marketo Good to Great virtual event. Yesterday, I shared my thoughts on what makes a webinar great vs. good. Today, let's talk about the latest trends for webinars and online events.
What are the hot trends in online web events and webinars?
Trend 1: Integration
One of the hot trends I’m seeing in online events is the integration of webinar platforms with other applications, particularly with marketing automation platforms like Marketo. There’s so much valuable behavioral data captured during a webinar – attendance data, polling responses, chat conversations – but until now, that data has been locked in your webinar platform and it took a lot of effort to get it into another system.
The problem here is that this manual work delays follow-up and, as we all know, slow follow-up has a major impact on conversion rates. I saw a March 2011 Harvard Business Review article that stated:
“Firms that tried to contact potential customers within an hour of receiving a query were nearly 7x as likely to qualify the lead … as those that tried to contact the customer even an hour later—and more than 60x as likely as companies that waited 24 hours or longer.”
That’s an amazing stat that illustrates how quickly leads grow cold!
At ReadyTalk, we’re working with partners like Marketo to automatically capture webinar data in their platform so marketers can act on it instantly – driving timely and relevant follow-up, lead scoring, and audience segmentation into different nurturing programs based on audience behavior. Note to Marketo users: check out the new integration between Marketo and ReadyTalk
Trend 2: Content Marketing
Another trend that’s hot right now is content marketing. While the live webinar is valuable in and of itself, webinars provide a rich source for high-value content to use in your ongoing content marketing efforts. You can really get a lot more bang for your buck by thinking beyond the end of the live event. We’ve seen customers do some pretty creative things with their webinar assets. Here are a few ideas for creating content you can use on your blog, on social channels, and in nurturing programs:
Market the recording as an on-demand event for audiences you missed the first time.
Break the recording into a series of brief sound bites that each hit on a key point.
Craft a blog post sharing key takeaways from the event or a recap of the Q&A.
Transcribe the event and turn it into an e-book.
Create a companion infographic that visually communicates key messages.
Trend 3: Social
Finally, social is another key trend. In fact, it's such a trend that it warranted it's own question, so stay tuned for part three of this series on Monday for my take on the role social plays in webinars.
What other trends are you seeing in online events?