…the latest installment of our 12 days of webinar series.

Webinars and videos, as high-value marketing assets, are ideal for building communities. The long-form content, with the insights and knowledge it contains, allows for a personalized and engaging experience that attracts a specific audience of interested viewers.

According to a Frost & Sullivan whitepaper, developing communities around content is an effective way to increase the value of webinars. It allows members to feel engaged with the overall content stream and makes it easy to browse related material. It also compounds on itself, which, when sustained, leads to a more effective marketing effort.

Unlike a social network, which is focused on the individual, an online community gathers around a common purpose, such as gaining knowledge on a particular topic or learning about an industry. Furthermore, dynamic content like webinars and video facilitates an engaging interaction between presenter and audience through built-in features such as live questions, audience polls, and audience-to-presenter chat.

So how do you do build a community with webinars? Here are a few lessons we’ve learned from building engaged professional communities around relevant content:

1. Create a destination for your webinars and community.
Have a portal or landing page on your site that gives access to your webinar bundle and showcases your content offerings. Determine a clear objective and target audience. This will also help optimize your website for search engines as you create keyword-rich content.

2. Make it easy for viewers to access your content again and again.
Use a one-time registration process that recognizes returning viewers and allows them to feel that they are part of a community from the outset. Through the registration process, you can get to know your audience and understand how to better cater to their interests.

3. Keep it relevant.
No matter what, the content that you put into your channel or offer to your community must be specific to their interests and needs. Help your audience find what is relevant to them with specific webinar titles that offer an appealing value proposition.

4. Use webinar level surveys.
They’re a good way to gather more detailed information about who’s watching your content and what their biggest concerns are.

5. Keep it constant.
Grow your audience by providing a steady stream of fresh content to the community. If you let it stagnate or start repeating the exact same information, your community will lose interest and go elsewhere with their thoughts, questions, and purchasing decisions.

6. Talk to community members.
Engage with the people in your community both outside your domain and within. Get their feedback and refine the focus of your marketing efforts. What do they want to hear about? What are the problems they are trying to solve? Do they have any feedback on your webinars? You’ll only know if you ask–reach out on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, via email, or anywhere you see people engaging with your content. Use this information to learn and grow.

For more information on building online communities, watch the How to Build Online Communities in Financial Services webinar and download this Frost & Sullivan whitepaper on building online communities.

This post is part of our series on the 12 days of webinars and videos. Check out our other posts:

One engagement marketing platform

Two co-founders talk about ten years of webinars and videos at BrightTALK

Three things Celtics star Rajon Rondo can teach you about B2B marketing

Four BrightTALK™ Channel owners who made the most out of their channels in 2012

Five best practices for B2B social media strategy