10 Best Practices for Preparing Your Guest Webinar Speakers

When planning a webinar, a crucial piece for pulling off a successful event is adequately preparing your guest webinar speakers for all the possibilities that come with a live production. We’ve put together a list of 10 best practices to thoroughly prepare your webinar speakers before, during and after the webinar.

 

Best Practice #1: Schedule practice sessions for each webinar

Practice makes perfect! Three to four dry-runs might be overkill for a reoccurring webinar, but for each brand-new webinar, if you are not making changes and updates after each dry-run, you’re not collaborating enough.

Dry-runs are the time to find all the gaps in content, ensure the presentation is smoothly transitioning throughout the entirety of the webinar and see if the webinar speakers have any issues with managing the webinar platform or connecting to audio.

 

Best Practice #2: Coach your webinar speakers on effective presentation skills

More people are likely to engage and pay attention when there are energetic and lively webinar speakers. Webinar attendees will take note if your webinar speakers’ delivery of presentations are engaging, easy to follow and have periods of interaction.

Ensure your webinar speakers don’t “talk at” attendees, or give a “death by PowerPoint” presentation. Similarly, ensuring there is something new to look at every minute or so on the screen will help to keep attendees engaged. Make sure your webinar speakers don’t sound like they are reading from a script either. Watch out for a monotone voice and those nails-on-chalkboard “um’s”.

Coaching your webinar speakers until they are comfortable speaking to a live audience and practicing all the above items will go a long way in having a successful webinar.

Best Practice #3: Train guest webinar speakers on your webinar platform

In many cases, your webinar speakers might have to manage the webinar platform in some context. Whether it is to advance their PowerPoint slides, type a question in the chat or put themselves on mute. Without proper preparation and training before a webinar, you’re likely to have confused webinar speakers if they are not familiar with your webinar platform. Likewise, if you have webinar speakers that are “technically-challenged” make sure you have multiple training sessions until they have it down.

 

Best Practice #4: Review and collaborate on all webinar content

Don’t let your guest webinar speakers plan the entire webinar, including content and engagement. As the primary webinar host, you oversee the whole webinar and its success. Make sure the guest webinar speakers are not putting together a “death-by-PowerPoint presentation.” And ensure that they are including multiple engagement opportunities with webinar attendees to keep them entertained. Similarly, encourage your webinar speakers to use powerful images in their presentations that align with their content.

During your dry-runs see what engagement tools are being used with the content, are they using the chat, Q&A and polling features to their advantages? Does the text in the polls align to the content and goals of the webinar?  A webinar is more than a webinar speaker spewing words; it’s an opportunity for a webinar speaker to interact with prospects or existing clients and to make a positive impact.

During your dry-runs, review the agenda and objectives of the webinar content to ensure it aligns with the text on the webinar registration page and that it fulfills the reason people are attending! Also during your dry-runs, it’s important to have at least one full dry-run to see if the content is long enough to last the entire length of the webinar.

 

Best Practice #5: Review webcam best practices

It is best practice to use a webcam when you’re live on a webinar, it gives a more personal touch and can feel more like an in-person event. Yet, there are many things to consider when you put a person on webcam.

Make sure the webinar speaker selects a nice solid colored shirt to wear the day of the live event, preferably not black. Also, ensure that whatever is shown behind them on the webcam screen is neat and tidy. I’ve seen messy beds in the background of a webcam before. Awkward!

Another best practice is to ensure there is a light set-up behind the speaker. This will make everyone look better on webcam. Before the live event if the webinar speaker is using a portable webcam, make sure they have the best angle on the camera, so it’s not too low or not too high. Lastly, give the webinar speaker a few tips about how close to move in on the webcam, don’t want to get too close, that would look strange – and too far away would be hard to see them.

 

Best Practice #6: Review all technical possibilities and create a playbook

Not only should you review what could potentially happen during the live webinar, like an audio failure, but you should also put together a playbook for how to react to every type of error should a technical error happen. This playbook should have a list of all error types and then a response for options of what to do.

 

guest webinar speakers should have a list of technical webinar errors and proper responses

 

With the audio failure example above, if their audio line is cut off, a playbook response could be to make sure they have a second phone available to dial in at any time. Likewise, if there is an internet failure an option in the playbook would be to have an alternative option nearby, like using a cell phone as a hot spot. These are the types of items to include in your playbook, so when something happens (and it inevitably does!) you know that the situation is covered.

 

Best Practice #7: Prepare a webinar script

A webinar script is like a map. Its function is to keep you on the right path throughout the length of the webinar and not find yourself on the wrong path halfway along the trip.

This script should be in the webinar speakers voice and cover all the main sections of the webinar. Ideally, a good webinar script is written from the initial introduction down to the goodbye and thank you for attending.

The script should include when to ask webinar attendees a question or request that they answer a poll. And highlight sections that are important to add a little extra energy, for example. With a solid webinar script, your webinar speaker will walk into (or sign into) the webinar fully prepared and ready to go without any hesitations on where to begin.

 

Best Practice #8: Prepare webinar speaker for post-webinar Q&A

Depending on who your webinar speaker is, an internal employee or an outsourced industry expert, you should prepare them for what type of questions may come up during the Q&A part of the webinar. You might want to bring in some internal help to answer questions that are beyond this person’s knowledge base, particularly if they are an outside industry expert, but might not be an expert on your offering.

Having the webinar speaker offer their contact information to webinar registrants to be able to reach out directly to ask questions after the webinar is a best practice as well. Some webinar speakers might not be keen on having their information distributed, so this option should be discussed beforehand.

As a side note, you might want to offer your webinar registration list as a thank you or payment to your webinar speaker. Before offering this as an option make sure you aren’t “selling your list” to a speaker who is just going to email spam them, ensure it could be just as beneficial for your webinar registrants to hear from your webinar speaker too.

Best Practice #9: Login to the webinar at least 30 minutes beforehand

This piece is very, very important – I cannot stress it enough! Make sure all key players of the webinar login to the webinar at 30 minutes before the start of the webinar. When this doesn’t happen, you never know what could take place throughout the webinar.

Use this time to do a last review of the content, ensure your engagement tools are set-up, test the sound quality and check that the audio is working. Have someone do a test to make sure that webinar attendees can access the webinar without a problem as well.

Doing this before the webinar start time will allow you to begin right on time and know that the webinar will most likely get off to a good start. Never hurts to have a few extra minutes to “pump” up the webinar speaker too, give them a little burst of energy to knock the webinar out of the park.

 

Best Practice #10: Help webinar speaker prep a sheltered space for the live webinar

If your webinar speaker is doing the webinar from a home office, ensure that their kids, pets, neighbors, mailman, or whoever, won’t interfere or make any noise during the live webinar. I’ve been on a webinar where a handyman accidentally walked in the path of the webcam, while funny, it took the whole webinar off track.

Alternatively, if they are doing the webinar from a work office, have them find a quiet room with a door where they won’t be disturbed. Perhaps even put up a sign saying, “live webinar in the process, please keep your voices down.” Have them keep this space clean and free of clutter.  Have them also potentially shut down their cell phone, email and IM apps on their computer. Just eliminate potential distributions, then it can never become an issue.

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Make the time to follow these best practices and ensure your webinar speakers are fully prepared for the live event. Your webinar speakers might believe they are seasoned speakers, even so, all you need to do is ensure they check all the above 10 boxes and then you will have the confidence in their speaking and presenting abilities to move forward with them as webinar speakers. A webinar speaker makes or breaks a webinar. They can have the best content, but if the delivery is poor, your company’s reputation can be on the line, not to mention the webinar speaker’s reputation, too.

 

To host your own amazing webinars with as many webinar presenters as you need, check out BigMarker. Sign up for a 14-day free trial today or send us a message to get in touch!

The Pros and Cons of Hosting an Automated Webinar

When it comes to hosting a webinar, you have two main options: you can do it live or you can record it and play it for viewers later. Before you make a selection, keep reading about the pros and cons of the latter version, an automated webinar.

What Is an Automated Webinar?

Before we jump right into things, let’s make sure everyone is on the same page about the definition of an automated webinar.

Simply put, an automated webinar is a webinar that is prerecorded. Therefore, it’s not “live” when people see it. As you can then continue playing it whenever you like (e.g. based on actions from another person), it’s referred to as an automated webinar.

Pro: You Can Use It Again and Again

This leads nicely to our first pro of using an automated webinar, which is that once you have yours done and recorded, you never have to go back and do either again. You’ll always have this great evergreen content on hand.

Companies that utilize live webinars have to host them over and over. This means that someone has to take time out of their day to stand in front of a camera for 30 to 60 minutes. If there are graphics involved or any other part of their presentation, those have to be synced up and played, too.

With an automated webinar, that’s not the case.

 

automated webinars evergreen content 2

 

Pro: Automated Webinars Can Be Viewed 24/7, 365

It’s because of this that your company can use an automated webinar around the clock and around the year.

Another drawback of the live version is simply that you’re leaving out a whole lot of people who would like to attend but can’t because of scheduling conflicts.

This includes people who may have prior obligations, but we’re also talking about whole countries in other time zones for whom it might simply be too inconvenient to attend your webinar.

By recording an automated webinar, people can watch yours whenever it makes the most sense for them. Never again lose viewers because of timing issues.

Pro: There’s No Need to Be Around

This is similar to the last point but worth bringing up by itself, too. Some of you may be small business owners or entrepreneurs who are pretty much going at it alone.

Among other things, this means you’re solely responsible for doing the work it takes to keep your company afloat.

If you have a webinar recorded that you can play whenever it’s needed, all of a sudden you have some serious time freed up. You could use it for any number of productive activities.

Pro: You Can Make It Absolutely Perfect

The biggest fear most people have before hosting a webinar is that they will screw up. This isn’t hard to believe given that the majority of people’s greatest fear is public speaking. Just because they’re not directly in front of an audience doesn’t necessarily make things any easier.

Some people definitely do screw up, too. While no one’s perfect, you don’t want to have your company poorly represented because the host of your webinar isn’t able to deliver when you go live. This could make your business look amateur, especially if competitors are doing much better with their webinars.

An automated webinar not only erases this problem but actually gives you quite the advantage, too. You can take all the time you need to create the perfect webinar. You can even edit the best shots from multiple versions so you get the most impressive version possible. Obviously, this would be impossible to do live.

Pro: Your Sales Funnel Just Received a Valuable Component

Some companies use webinars as standalone solutions. Others use them as a source of revenue (more on that in a moment).

Still others rely on webinars as part of their sales funnel. When qualifying potential customers, a webinar can be an attractive method for moving customers from one step in the funnel to another.

If you only ever do recorded seminars, this can be a bit trickier. They’re still helpful but because you need to make your prospect wait until the next time you’re giving one, you run the risk of losing them.

With an automated webinar, the moment they make the qualifying decision, you can send them the next webinar.

Pro: Automated Webinars Can Mean Automated Incomes

As we touched on a moment ago, an automated webinar could also mean a reoccurring source of revenue for your company.

After all, as you’re probably aware, lots of companies charge viewers to watch their webinars. Just because yours is automated doesn’t mean you need to charge any less. Although you definitely want to be honest with them about this, if you have some powerful testimonials to advertise from people who gained a lot from your webinar, this won’t be a problem.

Pro: You Can Produce Them Whenever You Want

Finally, just because you record a webinar doesn’t mean you have to keep using it for the remainder of time. Although one of the strengths of automated webinars is definitely the fact that you can use them over and over, this doesn’t mean you can’t create new ones whenever you want.

Look at people with YouTube channels who regularly create new content. They don’t let their preexisting library limit how much content they create going forward. You shouldn’t let this stand in your way, either.

As time goes on and you get better and better at recording webinars, it will become that much easier to launch a new one whenever you like. If you have an email list, it will also be easy to put these webinars in front of people who have already enjoyed your earlier efforts.

Now, that being said, automated webinars aren’t perfect, either. There are some serious potential drawbacks to think about, too. Let’s look at them now.

Con: No Urgency

One very powerful way to get people to sign up for your automated webinar is by emphasizing a sense of urgency. Many companies do this by letting people know they will only let attendees sign up until a certain day or up to a certain amount of people. After that, no more people will be allowed to attend.

As you can imagine, this can make a webinar “sell out” quickly, even if the sense of urgency created is completely artificial.

This is difficult to do with an automated webinar. It’s not impossible, necessarily. You could say that you want to keep attendance to a minimum to make it easier to answer people’s questions afterward, but you’d have to make a pretty good case for this.

Otherwise, it will look suspect. People will also know that you’ll most likely be offering your webinar again later, so what’s the point of rushing?

Con: Lack of Interaction

One big drawback you really can’t overcome when hosting an automated webinar is that you can’t count on the same level of interaction as you would get during a live version. There’s just no way for someone to ask you a question while a recorded webinar is playing.

If you were to somehow allow this, it would just make more sense to do the webinar live in the first place.

This is no small drawback, either. Many people look forward to webinars because they know they’ll get a chance to ask questions of an authority figure.

Other times, someone might be a bit confused by a certain point and now have no way of asking for clarification. You’ll most likely lose these people even if they were originally quite enthusiastic.

Con: They’re a Lot of Work

Any webinar is going to take a lot of work. The difference is that, as we just touched on, during a live one, you can answer questions, ad lib and roll with the punches as necessary to create the best possible experience for your attendees.

With an automated webinar, you need to do your best to anticipate what people may be thinking as they watch your program. You also have to do your very best to limit the questions someone could possibly have.

After you launch your first one, you should receive sufficient feedback for making necessary changes that result in a better product. Nonetheless, this can be a bit frustrating and definitely requires a lot of work.

Con: If You Don’t Do Them Well, There’s No Point to Doing Them at All

Along the same lines, your automated webinar needs to be perfect. The people on the other side can usually tell that your program was prerecorded so they won’t have much patience for anything other than a flawless delivery.

If you mess up a word or screw up a line even a little bit, you’ll have to start over. No matter how small the mistake may be, it must be redone.

Otherwise, your viewers are going to feel like you don’t really care. Even when the automated webinar is completely free, remember that they’ve set aside 30 minutes or more to listen to you, so you have to make a sufficient effort.

Con: You Can’t Reference Time-Sensitive Events

Depending on how dynamic your industry it is, you may have to stay away from references to time-sensitive events during your prerecorded webinars. Otherwise, they’ll quickly become outdated, which definitely will not help your cause.

For example, say you mentioned a certain regulation that plays a big role in your industry, but it is repealed or otherwise modified within a month or so. Your webinar is now going to confuse people or, again, make your business look out-of-date.

Con: They Can Come Off as Cheap

Finally, there are a couple of reasons your automated webinar may come off as cheap, which is just about the last thing you want.

We’ve touched on these to some extent or another, but we’ll summarize them here.

First, the lack of engagement can make it seem like you weren’t concerned about your viewers and just wanted to put something together. As live webinars continue to grow in popularity, this will increasingly become the case. Someone who attended a webinar last week where audience members could ask questions will be shocked to find they can’t at yours.

Also, as engagement continues to be seen as a premium, not having it will look like a rip-off.

Second, being able to access a webinar 24/7 is great, but it also makes it look less valuable. Unfortunately, humans tend to correlate exclusivity with value. Therefore, by trying to be helpful and make sure people can watch your webinar whenever you want, you’re actually hurting your chances of impressing them a lot of the time.

How to Have the Best of Both Worlds

We’re going to end with this final section about how you can have a webinar that benefits from both versions.

To begin with, if you’re nervous about recording, either have someone else do it or practice until you get it right. Also, as we’re going to recommend you do a live version, don’t expect too much from yourself at first. Know that you probably will make a mistake or two, but that it’s okay because you’re going to be improving.

Once you have the live version done, you’ll then take the recording and offer it to people. Just like with an automated webinar, this can be incredibly helpful for those who can’t attend when you hold the live version.

Don’t keep it up indefinitely, though. To ensure you leverage the power of urgency, only leave it up for a week or so, depending on your market.

Also, make sure you’re gathering emails in exchange for access. This introduces a certain amount of exclusivity but is also just great for building that all-important email list.

If you have the time to put out new webinars regularly, continue using this formula. Your list will make it easy to keep bringing in new viewers.

Overall, as long as you put time into your automated webinar and understand your market, it should be a major asset for your company. To start hosting effective, amazing automated or live webinars, check out BigMarker to get started. Or send us a message if you have any questions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/9-benefits-using-automated-webinars-kevin-o-connor?articleId=7962487576932234805

http://www.automationcore.com/pros-and-cons-of-automating-webinars/

https://s3.amazonaws.com/ewlaunchcontent/6-Money-Making-Features-And-Benefits-Automated-Webinar-Platform.pdf

5 Best Practices For Creating a Killer Automated Webinar

How to Create a High-Quality Webinar Landing Page

Are you planning to host a webinar in the near future? If so, you probably know there are a number of elements that go into doing this successfully. While it’s not a part of the actual presentation, your webinar landing page will play a huge role in whether or not this important form of content is successful.

 

The Importance of a High-Quality Webinar Landing Page

Before we start showing you how to create a successful webinar landing page, let’s really quickly cover why it’s so important.

After all, putting together a webinar is a lot of work, especially the first time you do it. By the time you finish putting together your presentation, you may feel tempted to simply slap together a webinar landing page so you can start promoting it ASAP.

We really advise you against this, though.

Your webinar landing page is going to be seen as a direct reflection on this important piece of content. While you don’t have to spend nearly as much time on it as your webinar presentation, you should make sure that it sets people up to have confidence in the actual webinar that’s about to follow.

Let’s begin with the basic ingredients every one of these landing pages absolutely must have. Just because these are the basics, though, doesn’t mean you can afford to take them for granted.

If you’re able to nail these elements, your landing page will be very powerful. Nonetheless, after these five concepts, we’ll continue by showing you some very promising tips you can implement.

 

Communicate Your Unique Selling Point (USP)

A high-converting webinar landing page will only be possible if you display your unique selling point or USP prominently at the top where it will be easy to see right away.

In other words, the moment someone lands on your webinar landing page, they should see what it is your webinar has to offer.

Take time considering what your USP is, too.

Ask yourself questions like: Why should people attend my webinar? What’s waiting for them at the end? How will their lives change for the better after attending it?

These things are your USP.

Now, the other part of this equation is coming up with the most efficient way of explaining your USP to the people who come to your webinar landing page.

Simply deciding on your USP isn’t good enough. You also have to communicate it to your guests in such a way that they won’t miss the point or otherwise decide to head elsewhere.

This copy is going to be extremely important, so take your time coming up with it.

 

Use compelling images on your webinar landing page

 

Add a Compelling Image

Your webinar landing page should have an image near the top that fits the USP you’re displaying, too.

For many of you, this will be simple. If you’re interviewing someone, just include a picture of them. They’ll probably have a headshot they can send you. It couldn’t be any easier.

Other times, this is going to be a little more involved. You’ll want an image that communicates the USP.

For example, if you’re going to be showing people how to increase traffic to your landing page, your landing page may display a graph that shows a positive trend.

If you were showing people how to get in shape, you might choose a before-and-after photo of your success or that of your clients.

Pro Tip: If you do decide to use a headshot or some other picture of a person, make sure they aren’t staring directly ahead. This makes it too easy for the reader to lock eyes with them which, in turn, interrupts the reading of the copy. Instead, have their eyes pointing toward important elements on your page.

 

Explaining the Benefits

A good USP only needs to be about a sentence or two. Remember, its job is to simply grab your visitors’ attention and make sure they don’t go running off to another page until they’ve scrolled down the page.

Provided they do this, you’ll want to list the benefits that they’ll receive from attending your webinar. If you went through the aforementioned process of coming up with a USP, it shouldn’t be too difficult to now expound on it and list out benefits for your attendees.

Generally, you should use bullet points for this. Doing so will let you list out a number of benefits without making bulky copy with lots of paragraphs. This could easily send potential attendees running.

 

Leverage Social Proof

One of the best ways to get people excited about attending your webinar is showing them what other people received after doing so. You want to give them testimonials because this kind of social proof is extremely powerful.

For instance, if you’re showing people how to make money in their free time, you’d want to show them statements from past attendees who have used what you taught them to do just that: make money in their free time.

At the end of the day, anyone can claim to teach just about anything. That’s why the more ambitious your claim, the more important it is that you back it up with testimonials that provide evidence.

Your USP and list of benefits regarding your webinar are still very important. Don’t think that just having a ton of testimonials on your webinar landing page will be enough.

It’s great if you have that many, but the other two components provide important context. You don’t want to waste those testimonials because people are getting confused.

 

Give a Clear Call to Action

At this point, if you’ve done all of the above, your webinar landing page should be coming along nicely. Anyone who lands on it should immediately be drawn down the page through the past four elements.

The last piece it needs is a call to action. You need to tell people what it is you want them to do.

This may seem too obvious to even need its own section, but don’t take this piece lightly. It’s been proven that people lose business when they aren’t straightforward with their potential customers. You must tell them exactly what it is you want them to do.

Tell them where to enter in their information to attend your webinar and make sure the forms are impossible to miss.

 

Bonus Tips

If you’re in a hurry and need a webinar landing page right away for some reason, you now have all the essential pieces for putting one together. That being said, if you have a bit more time on your hands, the following additions can make your webinar landing page even more powerful.

 

Create a high-converting webinar landing page

 

Use Custom Registration Fields to Grab Extra Information

We left on the call to action of your webinar landing page, so let’s continue there.

While you’re designing that part of the page, why not add one or two more registration questions to it?

Most people just ask attendees for their names and email addresses. That’s definitely enough. You can use their email addresses for a number of powerful reasons.

While you have them there, though, go ahead and ask for other helpful pieces of information.

You could ask about how they found out about this webinar, for example. Maybe it would help to know what kind of profession they’re in. Would learning about their biggest sticking points relative to what you teach be helpful?

Instead of asking these questions in future emails and hoping people respond, you already have this information. You can even use it right away to segment the initial emails you send out following your webinar.

Just don’t get carried away. Two or three questions are probably the maximum amount you should ask. You don’t want to lose potential attendees because they simply don’t want to keep filling out your form.

Provide a Sample

This is something we’re seeing more and more of and for good reason.

On your webinar landing page, you could include a brief sample to show your potential attendees what to expect.

This way, they can be confident that the speaker and equipment being used will lead to a webinar that’s worth their time.

Many of us have set aside time for what seemed like a promising webinar and then been horribly disappointed when it came time for the program to start.

There’s still a large disparity in terms of quality across webinars, which is why you can expect to see more and more sign-up pages including these previews. Companies appreciate that people want to be assured that their time won’t be wasted.

Use Urgency and Scarcity

Most webinars have urgency built in. If it’s a live program, people have to sign up before the show goes live or they’ll miss it. Thus, they need to act right away.

We’d still recommend you make this very clear to people. Many of these landing pages even include meters that track how many days, hours, minutes and seconds are left until the webinar goes live.

The other thing you can do on your webinar landing page is introduce scarcity. Tell your audience that you’re only going to allow a certain number of people in and, once they’ve signed up, you won’t take anymore.

This will do a couple of important things.

First, it’s going to knock people off the fence. Instead of thinking about it or putting the decision off until the last possible second, this scarcity means they might not have another opportunity to attend your webinar if they don’t sign up right now.

Second, it’s going to make them value it more. As you probably know, when you don’t allow everyone to have something, it naturally becomes more valuable to everyone.

Aside from the fact that this will dovetail nicely with urgency in terms of pushing people to take action; it also means that people will be more likely to appreciate the information you provide them.

Eliminate Navigational Tools

One hallmark of a good website is that it’s easy to navigate. People should have no problem jumping from one page to the next.

However, your webinar landing page is a little different. You actually don’t want to make it easy for your visitor to jump all over the place. You want to keep them on the page until they fill everything out and click “register.”

Obviously, they can use their browser controls whenever they want. The point is that you don’t want to lose someone simply because their attention went elsewhere for a fleeting moment and that was enough to take them off your page.

Along the same lines, despite all these elements we’re recommending, you want to keep your webinar landing page simple and streamlined. Keep it easy for visitors to comply with your wishes.

Don’t Try to Appeal to Everyone

This is a great time to bring up this important advice. You’ve probably heard the old adage that trying to please everybody is how you end up pleasing no one.

The same goes for the copy on your webinar landing page. It’s understandable that you’d be tempted to take a large net approach and simply do your best to catch as many attendees as possible.

However, you probably also have a purpose for putting on a webinar in the first place, right? Is it to generate leads or will you actually be selling a product/service?

Whatever the case, if you attract people who are never going to be good prospects, you’ll be severely reducing your closing percentage. Also, if you do decide to keep your webinar open to only a certain number of people, it’s even more important that you’re selective about who’s allowed in.

As you can see, a lot of work goes into creating a successful landing page for your webinar. However, the work is definitely worth it. Furthermore, after you do this once, you’ll have an easy time leveraging this landing page over and over in the future to continue promoting your webinars.

Nonetheless, if you have any questions or would like help setting up your webinar landing page, contact BigMarker. Not a BigMarker user yet? Start your 14-day free trial today.

 

 

 

 

Sources:

https://instapage.com/blog/webinar-landing-page-examples

https://blog.crazyegg.com/2015/06/11/webinar-landing-pages/

https://zapier.com/blog/best-webinar-landing-page-copy-and-design/

http://blog.wishpond.com/post/115675435901/how-to-create-the-perfect-webinar-landing-page

5 Landing Page Secrets to More Webinar Registrations

The Best Webinar Tactics For Hosting Software Demos

Web conferencing has unearthed an entirely new world of sales opportunities for software demos. Before the onset of webinars, business owners promoting any type of product often had to rely on an in-person appointment to ensure consumers had an authentic product experience. This proved especially true for software products. Technology consumers often required a live, hands-on immersion into the application in order to gain a genuine understanding about capability and functionality as well as how it could enhance their internal operations.

Fortunately, video conferencing has completely changed the promotional blueprint for software demos. An authentic product experience is still paramount to closing the deal. However, sales executives no longer have to waste invaluable time, money, and resources traveling back and forth from client sites to endorse a particular product or product line. Instead, account reps can simply schedule a user-friendly, intuitive webinar to effectively and efficiently grant prospective and current clients alike a realistic user experience in a virtual environment.

Online Software Demos: Create A Webinar That Delivers Maximum Audience Impact

While online software demos offer a host of undeniable advantages, it’s important to remember that it is still, at its core, a product pitch and will require some of the same selling techniques utilized in successful face-to-face engagements. However, unlike in-person meetings, using webinars for software demos brings the added nuance of not being in the same room as your audience.

In order to successfully combat distraction (and potential boredom), it’s critical to go into your conference prepared with proven best practices that both command attention and pique listener interest. Following a few simple tips can ensure you incorporate strategic webinar tactics for hosting software demos that yield maximum audience impact and, most importantly, help you close the deal.

Know Your Client

A successful pitch means performing all necessary client due diligence before everyone logs onto the session. In short, do your homework. Familiarize yourself with key details such as what the organization does, specific software needs, existing program applications, and how your product can solve an existing problem (or problems) they consistently encounter. Current client information is vital; however, you should also find out details about the organization’s expected growth objectives and anticipated trajectory. These facts will help you develop a webinar that addresses how your product offers a solution for present requirements as well as identifies how it evolves with them as their broaden their corporate scope.

Customize Your Presentation

You may be able to use a standardized template for in-person presentations (although, you probably shouldn’t). However, webinars eliminate the opportunity for eye contact, body language and other personal touches, making client-centric software demos are a must. Up your game by creating a one-of-a-kind, customized webinar experience for your audience. Use all the information garnered during your research phase to create a distinctive session that truly resonates with them as an organization.

Get To The Point

Saving time is a major webinar benefit, both to you and your client. No travel hours required – Users simply log in from the comfort of their own office. Don’t squander an opportunity to show your audience that you value their busy schedules by taking the long road to the big picture. Your prospect has probably already done their homework on you and your company and already knows enough about what you have to offer; kicking things off with extended introductions and long-winded company credentials/accolades will only bore (and possibly frustrate) them. Make the intro brief and delve into your message as soon as possible.

Dodge The Data Dump

You will also want to keep things concise with the actual software demo as well. Yes, it’s tempting to show your captive audience everything your product does. But how much of it will they actually find relevant? Wasting time with bells and whistles they can’t apply to their internal operations immediately can feel off-putting to your listeners. Plus, droning on about irrelevant functionality makes it seem like you’re out of touch with their specific needs. Avoid the product data dump at all costs. Instead, focus on the features that offer a solution to their existing problems. This instantly lends value and credibility to the session, proves you understand their needs, and demonstrates how much you value their time.

Show Don’t Tell

Once you’ve pinpointed relevant product features and capabilities, create a presentation that allows you to show your audience how they work, rather than simply telling listeners about it. Online software demos offer you the ability to connect with your attendees on an audio and a visual level; it’s important to tap into both for an optimal sensory experience that informs and captivates your crowd. Rather than simply listing product features, create a compelling story with your slide deck that clearly:

  • Identifies your clients’ biggest obstacles
  • Illustrates the significant impact of these issues
  • Explains how your software delivers an ideal solution

Highlighting scenarios where your product provides value in their day-to-day routines has a more significant affect then simply listing its benefits.

Discuss Key Differentiators

Also, when developing your narrative, you should always showcase your software’s unique selling points. Chances are, you aren’t the only option available to consumers. What makes your product stand out from the competition? What do you offer that others don’t? Your slide deck should illustrate your biggest differentiators for enhanced audience influence.

 

webinars and video conferencing for training

 

One critical factor that you should always highlight? Your company’s ability to offer remote support. Remind your customer that webinars aren’t just for sales demos. You can also utilize video conferencing for staff training on your products after a purchase has been made.

Additionally, you should also reinforce your ability to use webinar hosting anytime there’s a functionality enhancement or system update so their team receives the support they need to perform their jobs as effectively as possible at all times. This helps sets your business apart from the competition as a company who values convenience, affordability, and efficiency. It also allows your clients to view your organization as a long-term partner who provides ease of use with all purchased products.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Yes, web conferencing eliminates any in-person sales presentation jitters. However, while a webinar may not be in-person, it’s still a live session. Additionally, you’re not just speaking about your product; you are actually incorporating a real-time demonstration into the webinar. Before your session you will want to rehearse three key features:

  • Webinar services: Test the functionality of the webinar software you’ll be using
  • Talking points: Create a clear list of agenda topics you aim to cover during your demo
  • Software demo: Run through the demonstration you plan to perform during the webinar

Any glitches in your software demos will reflect poorly on your salesmanship as well as your product line itself. It can make your organization look incompetent as well as make your audience feel like they weren’t worth the time needed to iron out potential hiccups.

Practice each component in advance to ensure a seamless execution when you go live. Work with your internal team to smooth out any possible technical difficulties. Also, don’t underestimate the value of dry runs with your demo. Gather up colleagues and go through your entire demonstration from start to finish. Finally, always check in with your client before the session to understand their specific technology setups and determine if you can assist them with any logon questions/concerns before the webinar.

Adapt and Adjust

As a salesperson or marketer, you already know that there’s just no predicting where your sales session will go. Creating an outstanding client story and relevant demo is mandatory, but it doesn’t mean that your client will want to stick to the script throughout the duration of your meeting. In fact, chances are, they won’t…and that’s a good thing.

Don’t get frazzled and flustered if your clients try to change the direction of the meeting. Instead, adjust as needed to maintain the natural flow of the discussion. Allowing your audience to redirect the session shows your adaptability to change and acknowledges the customer is ultimately in charge. Also, their involvement in the presentation instantly makes it less of a monologue and more of an interactive exchange. Stay flexible during the webinar to encourage an extensive collaboration with the audience.

Allow for questions during online software demos and webinars

Allow For Questions

Even if your clients seem more than happy to let you lead them through the session without interruption, you should still make an effort to include them in the discussion as much as possible. Allow for spontaneous inquiries at any time. Also, consider using designated Q&A sessions throughout the demonstration to get the conversation going. Their questions can provide added insight into how your company can enhance its value in a professional partnership. More importantly, interaction enriches the attendees’ experience, increasing the odds that they will want to make a purchase from you.

Stick To The Facts

When using webinar tactics to highlight product solutions, it’s important to stick to the facts. Don’t over-promise with deliverables or embellish on capabilities. Also, if you don’t know an answer, say so. While you may not want to end your videoconference without answering every question, sometimes you may have to. Your webinar audience will appreciate your honesty and it can build trust in your relationship even after the demonstration has ended.

Close The Deal

No, it isn’t a face-to-face sales call, but it’s still a sales call. It’s always important to offer informational sessions to prospects, but your ultimate goal is always to close the deal. If the webinar has gone smoothly, and you feel like all questions have been answered, look for an opportunity to ask for the business. If you feel like the timing isn’t right, at least create a call-to-action at the end of the videoconference. Send follow up questions, setup a trial session, or ask to schedule the next webinar to keep things continuously moving towards the sale.

Start Hosting Software Demos!

BigMarker offers powerful webinar software and robust marketing features that will maximize the ROI of your software demos. Start your 14-day free trial today or send us a message if you’d like to learn more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources:

http://venturebeat.com/2012/05/14/10-tips-for-killer-sales-demos/

http://hsm.typepad.com/inspiringideas/2009/05/5-benefits-of-adding-webinars-to-your-learning-and-training-options.html

5 Reasons to Use Automated Webinars as Part of Your Marketing Strategy

Have you used automated webinars as part of your existing marketing strategy? If you have not considered them to be a priority, there is a lot of missed opportunity you may have not adequately explored!

Automated webinars take regular webinars a step further by offering an on-demand version of a webinar online at any time. Essentially, this is a video anyone can watch either from your website or social media pages. Automated webinars are an excellent way to engage with prospects and clients when they have the time, versus scheduling a time for a live webinar that you hope fits a broad range of schedules.

Automated webinars sometimes receive flack for lack of substance and audience engagement, but like any video, it is all in the effort of your production! If you have a monotone speaker talking through equally boring PowerPoint slides, you’re right – the webinar will not be well received.

Pulling together a cohesive and engaging automated webinar can be a big task, but well worth it! Take a look at our list of 5 reasons you should make automated webinars a part of your marketing strategy!

  1. You’ll Save Time
  2. Presentation is Always Available
  3. Always-On Lead Generation Tool
  4. Easily Sharable
  5. More Face Time

 

#1) You’ll Save Time

Live webinars can be a BIG time-suck! You need to build registration landing pages, send reminder follow-ups, thank you email follow-ups, schedule dry-runs with your speaker, and so on. And should you decide to run that live webinar for the second time, you must do it all over again!

The beauty with an automated webinar is that you just have to produce it once, well, until you get it right anyway. You plan, practice, and then execute and place on website and share on social media. And one of the best things is that you’re not running against the clock.

With a live webinar, you already have a date scheduled, and once you put out the registration page and people start registering no matter how swamped you or your speakers are with other priorities, this live webinar is happening! With an automated webinar, you are not running against a ticking clock; you put the video out there when it is fully baked, optimized and ready for viewing!

 

#2) Presentation is Always Available

A huge benefit of an automated webinar is that it is always available. From your website to your social pages like YouTube and Facebook. If prospects are researching your company and doing their homework, they will be able to find these videos and watch when their schedule allows, versus trying to accommodate a live webinar time.

Automated webinars are a marketing tool that will continue to be out there in the world, ready for prospects to start watching and learning about your company. Outside of website pages, there are very few marketing activities that are “always on” like automated webinars.

Pro Tip: an automated webinar is a great asset to place on your homepage, front and center. If you have a webinar that is doing really well, you’re hearing great feedback and bringing in tons of leads on top of that – optimize your efforts by putting the automated webinar on your main page where all the web traffic is!

 

#3) Always-On Lead Generation Tool

With the presentation being always on and available for prospects, that also means you have an always-on lead generation tool. An engine that doesn’t quit! With automated webinars, you still have a registration page, which is how you capture prospects information.

When looking at your marketing strategy, being able to optimize projects and initiatives that are almost “set-it-and-forget-it” are key to being able to grow your inbound lead numbers, and in turn increase revenue for the business. Having strategies like this allow for reoccurring incoming leads and allows your marketing team more time for initiatives that may be one-off events like conferences, trade shows or even a live webinar event, when they make sense.

Pro tip: as mentioned above, make sure these automated webinars are in a place where prospects can find them. This is key to ensuring your automated webinars pull in those inbound leads!

 

Automated webinars are an always-on lead generation tool

 

#4) Easily Sharable

Automated webinars are easily shareable! Unlike a live webinar, you cannot share that content as easily, or even if you can share the context might be lost if you didn’t participate in the live event.

When a prospect is viewing an automated webinar, if they like what they see and find value in the content they are more likely to share the video via their social networks or shoot an email to their boss with the link to watch. Automated webinars are not built to be live, so anyone can watch them and understand the purpose! Which makes sharing more likely.

 

#5) More Face Time with Automated Webinars

Our final reason that automated webinars should be a part of your marketing strategy is more face time! Meaning, you literally can have more “face” time with your prospects.

Whether it is someone from your team speaking on the webinar, your CEO or an industry expert. The more a prospect can see a face that ties back to your company, the more “Real” and personable your company seems. Which is another reason you need to make sure to pick your automated webinar speakers wisely.  Your speakers should convey the “brand voice” that has been set as part of your brand standards.

Having personable and quality driven automated webinars are a great asset to have throughout the buyer’s journey. An automated webinar might start out as a lead generation tool, but if you develop content that speaks to the whole buying process and you use the videos in nurturing campaigns, you’ll be more likely to get prospects to stick with you as you’ve now become a relatable company in their eyes.

Quick Tips

With these 5 reasons in mind to make automated webinars a part of your marketing strategy, here are a few quick tips on how to create an exceptional automated webinar to heed these positive results:

  1. Can’t stress this enough – thoroughly vet your speakers! You need someone who has a strong and interesting personality to fully capture a listener’s attention and have someone who is ideally presentable on camera.
  1. Have a strong call to action in your automated webinar. Your prospects need to know: A) why they are watching this automated webinar, and B) what to do after the webinar is over. The goal in an automated webinar is to drive a prospect down your unique buyer’s journey. Your prospect likely doesn’t know next step, but you do, so be sure to share it! And try to make your call to action clickable at the end of the automated webinar, whether that leads them to a form to schedule a product demo or a link to an interesting eBook.
  1. Keep the automated webinar interesting – since this is NOT a live event, you need to keep the webinar short, concise and engaging. Don’t just be a talking head, or worse – don’t just show a deck of PowerPoint Slides. Go back and forth between your webinar speaker, minimal text PowerPoint Slides and perhaps a demo of your product.
  1. The content you share in your automated webinar will make or break if the prospect continues to engage with your company. Remember that the content should be about the prospect and not about you! Take the time to consider what sort of content would be interesting for people that your product or service is a fit for, and how can this content help them. That should be the purpose of your webinar. For example, an automated webinar titled, “How this Product Can Save Your Marketing Team 50,000 a Year” would draw some attention for sure!
  1. Don’t skimp on production costs. If you want your automated webinar to truly be a lead generation tool as part of your marketing efforts, make sure you use quality tools to build your webinar. If your automated webinar looks like it was built in a basement, you aren’t doing yourself any favors! Take the time to vet automated webinar solutions. It will pay off in dividends! People judge on quality, if you offer a quality product but your marketing looks outdated or poorly executed, prospects likely think that your product follows suit.

Final Thoughts

Automated webinars are a viable way to scale your marketing efforts in 2017 and beyond. The goal of any marketing team is to drive inbound marketing leads and turn these leads into customers. Automated webinars are a tool that can and should be used throughout the different stages of the buyer’s journey to drive this initiative.

In this day and age, videos are more popular than ever with a large percentage of people preferring video oven written text. Grab these individuals with valuable automated webinars at a time that fits their schedule and current stage in the buyer’s journey.

Finally, automated webinars allow a prospect to determine the next step, sure you can suggest the next call to action, but if they aren’t feeling it, then they can just turn off the video. You are giving more power to the prospects to do their homework and reach out when they are ready, which is what a buyer wants with all the noise in the market today. Automated webinars are for the prospect, give them what they want!

 

If you’d like to integrate automated webinars into your content marketing strategy, look no further. BigMarker is a robust, easy-to-use webinar software that will help you host amazing live and simu-live online events. To start your free 14-day trial, sign up here. Or, if you’d like to get in touch, send us a message.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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For more tips on running automated webinars to scale your business, check out this article from Entrepreneur.com.