Your Webinar Questions Answered by HourlyNerd's Dan Slagen and ReadyTalk's Shawn Cardinal
On August 19, Dan Slagen, the CMO of HourlyNerd spoke on ReadyTalk’s webinar series about the different ways to promote a webinar. He touched on five key components including:
- Ways to market through your speakers
- How partnerships can increase webinar attendance rates
- How to blog about your webinar
- Reasons not to be afraid of paid media
- The importance of promising and delivering high quality content
Following the session, both Slagen and ReadyTalk’s lead trainer Shawn Cardinal took the time to answer questions asked by the listeners.
How do you recommend advertising webinars in a B2B scenario?
While advertising webinars in a B2B scenario can be slightly more challenging than simply a B2C situation, the overall strategies are very similar. One of the best ways to attract other businesses is through paid channels. Spending money to promote it and attract an audience is almost as important as creating the content that will be presented in it. Often times, the easiest way to reach businesses through paid channels is LinkedIn. The use of this professional networking sight is becoming more prominent in the business world and is looked at more favorably compared to Facebook and Twitter.
However, when companies strategically utilize Facebook, it can produce great results. While companies tend to prefer LinkedIn, Facebook is starting to show more B2B activity. Unfortunately, the results very greatly, as some companies respond positively to Facebook and others do not. It is a channel that will require a lot of time and effort and can ultimately be expensive. If you have someone in-house with knowledge on the different areas of performance marketing such as paid search and analytics, then you can allow them to dedicate their time to Facebook and Twitter. Otherwise, it might be more cost efficient to really only focus on B2C marketing through those two mediums.
Another great online method recommended for both B2B and B2C marketing would be cost per click. This will allow your company to track results and understand the advertisements that are working and the ones that aren’t producing as many results. Overall, the best way to advertise webinars is online. Whether you decide to use LinkedIn, cost per click, emails or Facebook, the best way to gain more registrants is through the Internet because online promotion leads to click-throughs and registration pages. It makes it more convenient for businesses to signup, and gives them the immediate opportunity.
When do you recommend that we should start promoting our webinars?
The promotional time frame depends on the overall goal of the webinar. There is no set date, however, we recommend that promotion for most webinars should start two to three weeks in advance. Studies show that 64 percent of registrants actually register the week of the webinar, and 21 percent wait until the day of to register. As long as you are using strong promotional tactics, then waiting until two weeks prior to the live event, will still generate satisfying results. Less than two weeks, might be pushing it and not allow you to fully gain your maximum audience. While we typically suggest promoting a webinar two to three weeks in advance, if you are aiming to gain a large audience of over 1,000 attendees, more time and effort will need to be spent toward marketing the event, and you should start working on it about a month before the webinar to ensure that you target all prospects.
Do you have any recommendations to endure attendance? We have a bunch of registrants, but then the actual live attendance rate is very low. What are some tips as to get people to show up?
Now before you get discouraged from your attendance rate, alter your expectations to become more proper and accurate. In general one-third of your registrants will most likely not show up; so don’t expect a 90 percent attendance rate because that is just not realistic. We all prefer participants to listen to the live webinar in order to spark conversation and to provide a better overall experience for them.
One of the best ways to encourage registrants to be present for the live date is running a contest and giving them an incentive to show up. We are not talking about offering them a free iPad or 100-dollar gift card, but make the incentive something industry related. Make the prize something industry, subject or training related such as free tickets to an upcoming conference. This way you do not attract people who simply want the “random” gift, but instead you start to accumulate an audience generally interested in your content. Even if people do show up just to receive the free giveaway, at the end of the day the most important thing is that they will be there to listen to your speaker and learn about your content.
The number one way to attract people to your webinars is by advertising exclusive and intriguing content. Big surprise! If people are interested in your topic and the content you will be offering, then they will register and hopefully be present at the start time. The more interested they are, the more of a “can’t miss” status your webinar holds. However, things come up and people sometimes have other obligations causing them to rely on the webinar recording, which leads us to our next question.
How do you promote a webinar and offer a recording to an audience without cannibalizing your own live attendance?
Recording a webinar is a very important promotional tactic that many companies use because it allows multiple people to benefit from the information and increases brand awareness. However, to increase the live attendance rates, it is important that you are careful and strategic in promoting the recorded aspect of the webinar. Avoid sending very blunt and obvious messages advertising the fact that your company will be recording the webinar and sending it to registrants. Instead, inform participants at the start of the presentation that there will be a recording sent to them at the conclusion of the webinar.
The recording of a webinar can be as useful in generating leads as the live event, if people are able to easily access it. It is vital that you put recorded webinars on your company’s website. This way, when people are clicking through your company’s website, they will have the opportunity to watch it. Use the recordings to your advantage. Offer the recorded piece to the public, but before they can watch it have them fill out some type of form with their information on it. Ask them to provide their name, company, email, etc. just simple information that could benefit your company and increase your database. This way, both your company and the viewer both benefit from the webinar. Give as many people as possible access by making it easily available to everyone. Make the information that you are providing interesting and compelling and have it out there for people to discover and learn about. They may not buy your product from one webinar, but it will certainly increase brand awareness and company credibility.
To learn more about promoting a webinar, check out the full webinar recording here: Guarantee Nobody Misses your Next Webinar.