Confession: I have RSVP’d “yes” to far more webinars than I’ve actually attended.
This is usually due to a busy schedule, sometimes due to forgetfulness and other times it’s just…apathy towards webinars. Because I have attended far too many that are boring, pointless and vague. If I fear that I’ve signed up for something that will just send me daydreaming, I’ll skip it for productivity’s sake.
And I know I’m not alone.
If webinars are a part of your content marketing repertoire, here are 5 important things you need to consider.
#1: Make it audience-focused, not self-serving.
Let’s be honest. No one wants to spend their time attending a webinar that is a thinly-veiled promo for your latest product or service.
If your webinar is, in fact, simply a promotion, that’s ok. There is a time and a place for those, but be upfront about it.
If what you’re going for is to educate your audience about a topic or position your company as a thought leader, then make sure your webinar is focused on them and not you. Of course, there should be a tie-in with your company’s offerings (and if not, don’t do a webinar about that topic). You also want to show off how smart, savvy and helpful your company is.
But if you have spent the entire webinar referencing your company’s offerings, what you’re really doing is giving a sales presentation, and that is not the goal. How you make the connection to your actual products and services is important. A brief call-to-action at the end of the webinar is usually the perfect way to remind attendees of how you fit into the bigger picture, and how you can help them.
#2: Show up with some eye candy.
You need great visuals that support what is being said, not visuals that are simply an on-screen regurgitation of your script. Charts, screen grabs and step-by-step walkthroughs are helpful, as is calling out key stats or points on screen.
If the visuals aren’t important to the webinar, attendees will start to drift off to check email or start browsing Facebook…and they might not come back.
#3: Choose your voice wisely.
Ben Stein made a career out of his notoriously boring voice (Bueller, Bueller, anyone?), but he’s an anomaly.
Boring speaker = boring webinar. The voice of your webinar should be engaging and dynamic. It helps if they have passion for the topic and can convey that passion.
Even though they won’t need to face an audience, the chosen person should be comfortable with public speaking (the tenants are the same) and should be comfortable going off script, and able to handle a Q&A session at the end of the webinar.
#4: Send enticing reminders.
It’s so easy to schedule automatic reminder emails that everyone does this. However, not everyone makes those emails a reminder of why their webinar is going to be amazing and worthwhile to attend.
When you craft those reminder emails, make them enticing and memorable. That will make people more excited to attend and less likely to blow it off because they don’t remember what it was or why they wanted to attend in the first place.
#5: Give attendees something extra.
You want every attendee to log off of your webinar feeling like it was worth their time. There’s no better way to give that feeling that than to provide them with something they couldn’t get anywhere else.
This might be as simple as providing unique and helpful insight, or it might mean giving them access to special bonus material or a Q&A with a key team member. Whatever the perk is, make it valuable and follow it up with an enticement to stay connected.
The benefit of creating a great webinar lasts long after it’s over. Your audience will remember that it was great, and be more inclined to sign up for the next one.