How to Prepare a Guest Webinar Presenter in 12 Easy Steps

A webinar presenter could be a force-multiplier for the success of your show. It’s still a big decision to bring one on, though, which is why we’re going to cover this topic in detail.

Why You Should Bring on a Guest Webinar Presenter

This can be a very big step for many companies. You may have been successful at building up a decent audience for your webinar program and are, therefore, rightfully cautious about the idea of bringing in a guest to hold the reins.

If so, let’s quickly cover some of the reasons a guest webinar presenter could be completely worth it.

The first is that it’s simply nice to mix things up. You’ve probably heard that variety is the spice of life. We’re not saying your audience may be getting bored with you, but it will definitely grab their attention if somebody else will be speaking to them.

Second, the person you choose should have some kind of expertise. This means they can provide your audience with information that you couldn’t. Even if you could cover the same topic, their credentials may go a long way toward getting the message across.

Third, you can leverage the other person’s audience. This is an absolutely huge advantage and, thus, something else you should be thinking of before deciding on the guest webinar presenter you’re going to invite to host the show.

Ideally, find someone who has a large audience of their own. They’ll then tell their following about this webinar they’re doing and you’ll be able to attract more people to watch.

Down the line, you can still benefit from their name recognition when people do web searches for them. If they feature the webinar on their site, you’re going to get more traffic and a nice backlink.

 

There are countless other reasons it may pay to have a guest webinar presenter run your program, but these big ones should have you thinking about the opportunity.

 

1. Host a Dry Run

This is probably the most important tip of the list, but it often goes overlooked. If you’ve hosted a number of webinars already, it may be second nature to you at this point. Therefore, you may assume the same goes for your guest webinar presenter.

You don’t have to have them do the entire thing, but make sure that they feel comfortable with the concept and the technology. Encourage your guest webinar presenter to ask questions.

 

2. Make Sure You’re Clear About Expectations

This is another easy one to overlook. Imagine your guest webinar presenter finishes their live presentation and it’s only then that you realize they didn’t understand what you were looking for from them.

Now, you not only have to do the entire thing over, but you also have to get through a fairly awkward conversation. They might not have time in their schedule to redo an entire webinar in the near future, either.

Your list of expectations should include:

  • The topic you want them to cover
  • Any important subtopics
  • The tone of the webinar (professional, casual, etc.)
  • How long it should take
  • Any CTAs you need them to include
  • Whether or not they can pitch their own products/services

Use this list, but also feel free to come up with any other pointers that will help them.

Recognize, too, that your guest webinar presenter will probably really appreciate you taking the lead to help guide them. They don’t want to do a bad job or otherwise miss the mark anymore than you do.

 

3. Let Them Know About Your Audience

Unless your guest webinar presenter is already familiar with your audience, you’ll want to tell them what to expect from your listeners.

Presumably, this won’t be a problem for you. Nonetheless, these are some questions that it may help to answer in preparation:

  • What is their age range?
  • What industries are they in?
  • Why do they usually tune in?
  • Which parts of the world are they from (some cultural references may not make sense)?

You can also share feedback with them that you’ve received in the past. Even if you’ve already processed these critiques and made changes to the way you do webinars, this kind of information can be extremely helpful.

 

4. Sort Out the Graphics They’ll Use

Every webinar needs to have visual components aside from just the speaker’s face. Long before your guest webinar presenter takes to the mic, you should both understand which graphics are going to be used.

You may already know the ones you would like them to present. If not, make sure they know that they’ll be responsible for this vital component. Offer to help them with this if they’d like.

If they decide to provide the graphics, then politely ask to see them beforehand. This way, there won’t be any nasty surprises the first time they put one on screen.

 

5. Make Sure They’re Okay with a Q&A Segment

One other element that usually makes a webinar much better is allowing audience members to ask questions at the end. Some people even give time for them throughout the presentation.

Obviously, this only applies to live webinars. Assuming that’s what you’re doing, let your guest webinar presenter know that you’d like them to take some questions at some point. If they haven’t used your interface before, you’ll need to show your webinar presenter what this will entail.

Allow for a webinar Q&A with a guest presenter

6. Discuss the Dress Code

If they’ll be facing a formal seminar, your webinar presenter shouldn’t show up wearing a sweatshirt and hat. This goes back to the point about tone we brought up earlier. They may be a wonderful presenter and even an expert on the topic, but if they’re dressed too casually, this will throw your audience off.

Likewise, if your webinar presenter is going to be talking about a more casual topic or their audience will be made up of people who don’t have a dress code at work, there’s no reason for them to wear a suit and tie or nice dress.

Your presenter probably has enough sense to know this, so you don’t need to make it an overt point, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Just politely tell them what kind of attire you think would be best.

 

7. Have Them Focus on Engagement

Q&A sessions are so great because they ensure there is a certain level of engagement during a webinar. Otherwise, it can be too easy for people to lose focus or drift off instead of watching your presentation.

There are other ways to engage the audience, though. Therefore, even if you’re not doing a live webinar, make it a point to stress that engagement needs to be a priority.

Your webinar presenter should be saying “you” a lot more than “I” for example. They should look for opportunities to bring up situations and scenarios that their audience will immediately find relatable. Again, this is why knowing about one’s audience plays such a big role in a webinar’s success.

 

8. Schedule a Quick Pre-Webinar Meeting

Ask your webinar presenter to either show up early or call you beforehand so you can go over the plan one more time before the show begins. This will give you both an opportunity to iron out any details that may still be in your presenter’s head.

The real reason to do this, though, even when your presenter is 100% ready, is simply to make sure the program begins on time.

If they’re coming into your office to do the webinar, they might get stuck in traffic. If they’re doing it remotely, the technology might provide a challenge at the last second. You never want a delay between the time you said a webinar will begin and when it actually does. This is especially true when you’re introducing a guest webinar presenter to your audience.

 

Schedule a pre-webinar meeting

 

 

9. Introduce Your Guest Webinar Presenter Well Beforehand

Speaking of which, your audience should be excited about this new guest. You don’t want them learning about them for the first time when they log in. However, you also don’t want your audience to have vague expectations.

Excitement is a huge advantage to have when presenting a webinar. People will be more likely to give you the benefit of the doubt and ignore small hiccups when they’re full of anticipation.

Of course, this will also help increase attendee enrollment. Long before the webinar goes live (or is otherwise published), start telling your audience why this guest is not to be missed.

 

10. Have a Backup Plan

This is another tip that isn’t necessarily about preparing your guest webinar presenter but is still crucial.

Unless your guest is a seasoned webinar professional, they might run into nerves when they realize they’re speaking to a large audience. If that happens, will you be able to step in? If they’re doing the webinar remotely and their feed cuts out, do you have a plan for running the show?

The likelihood of these things happening is small, but the fallout would be massive. Webinar attendance is already a tough thing to count on. Imagine what would happen to your numbers if your audience remembers that the last time you held one it was a complete bust? Plan accordingly.

 

11. Should You Ever Pay for a Webinar Presenter?

Finally, we’re going to close on a common question that gets asked when it comes to inviting a presenter to run your show.

Without a doubt, the presenter should get something from it. Otherwise, why would they bother doing it? Unless it’s a friend doing you a favor, they have a job and busy schedule to attend to as well, right?

That doesn’t mean you have to pay them, but it does mean you should be able to give them something in return. Maybe it’s just your large audience. Maybe you’ll be partnering with them on a project in the near future, so increasing their mindshare with your market is important.

That being said, don’t shy away from the idea of paying someone. Once you set a budget, you can broaden your horizons and may be able to choose a really impressive name in your industry simply by paying their bill.

Having a dollar sign attached to the success of this project also ensures the guest presenter takes your webinar seriously. It would be great if you could take for granted that they were going to do this, but money is a nice insurance policy.

 

12. Consider Having Another Webinar Ready

Finally, we talked about what you’d do if your presenter falls through or the technology crashes. Similarly, you should have a contingency plan in case the thing goes off without a hitch but simply doesn’t do well with your viewers.

This means having another webinar idea lined up and ready to go. By having one in the chamber you can quickly let your audience know that you’ll be doing one again next week. Doing so will limit the number of them who may detach permanently after a bad experience. You’re moving things right along and limiting the amount of time they have to solidify this new perception of your webinar as a low-quality one.

Bringing in a guest webinar presenter definitely comes with a unique set of challenges, but the result can definitely be worth it. Remember, too, that once you get your first guest webinar in the books, the others are going to be much, much easier.

This article should also help. Follow the above advice and you should be feeling extremely confident about having a guest run your show.

You can always count on BigMarker for advice, too. If you’re still nervous about the whole thing, just let us know how we can help.

 

Sources:

http://blogs.adobe.com/adobeconnect/2013/12/six-tips-for-new-webinar-presenters.html

http://blog.workcast.com/top-10-tips-for-webinar-presenters

http://blog.clickmeeting.com/10-wow-audience-tips-webinar-presenters

https://elearningindustry.com/14-tips-to-create-and-present-a-highly-effective-webinar

https://www.meetingburner.com/blog/how-to-recruit-an-influential-guest-presenter-for-your-next-webinar/

http://www.eventbuilder.rocks/5-tips-for-using-experts-as-guest-presenters-in-marketing-webinars/

http://blog.clickmeeting.com/benefits-guest-expert-speakers-webinars

Tips and Tricks for Keeping Your Online Audience Engaged Throughout Your Entire Webinar

Webinars offer an ideal way to connect with an online audience that often surpasses live gatherings, which makes them the meeting of choice for many.

This is especially true for speakers motivated to connect with as many participants as possible in a single gathering. However, keeping an online audience engaged can be tricky. That’s why we’re sharing some of our key tips and tricks for keeping an online audience engaged throughout your entire webinar.

Identifying the Challenges

Although webinars offer significant benefits over live meetings, it’s important to remember that there are some unique challenges to consider when presenting a webinar to an online audience.

With a screen (and potentially hundreds of miles) between you and listeners, zoning out during a webinar can be commonplace amongst an online audience. Simply pushing the mute button on a session is all it takes to multi-task during a webinar that isn’t completely holding your audience’s attention.

In order to avoid the dreaded webinar “tune out,” you will have to up your engagement game during the session. This will ensure your online audience remains plugged in during your entire demonstration. Implementing several proven tips and tricks for keeping your online audience engaged throughout your entire webinar can help keep everyone on task.

When planning for success with your next webinar, consider the following advice:

 

What’s Your Point?

Don’t go into your webinar with an extensive range of topics and ideas you’d like to cover during your session.

Going too broad with your dialogue can almost guarantee you’ll lose the attention of your listeners at various points if they determine that what you’re talking about isn’t relevant or interesting to them personally.

When choosing the topic of your presentation, get as specific as possible so all users logging in understand exactly what they will be listening to during your time together. Also, know going into the topics selection process that pinpointing an outline that works for everyone is virtually impossible.

It’s better to develop a webinar that makes a significant impact on a smaller audience than one that covers far too much information and loses traction with a larger one. If you’re not sure how to select an engaging topic that will resonate with your niche, ask.

Consult with your team for ideas or send along a survey directly to your demographic to ask what they want to know more about so you can focus your event accordingly.

 

Get Specific About Your Benefits

Choosing the right topic is only the first step in successfully connecting with your listeners. Beyond the points you’ll discuss in your session, you will also want to outline why it’s your online audience’s best interest to attend.

Get specific about what each listener in your online audience will reap from attending your webinar. Seeing the list of benefits offered by your conference will pique their interest and help keep them on point with you throughout the discussion.

 

Command Attention Right at the Start

Don’t rely on a long buildup to captivate your online audience.

Make it your mission to command attention as soon as you start speaking. Avoid spending too much time with introductions and miscellaneous details.

Instead, get the intros done quickly, move on to an engaging (albeit succinct) anecdote and then dig into the meat of your presentation. Keep it concise to let attendees know right at the start you won’t be wasting precious time on monotonous details and will be keeping the discussion moving forward. It’s an excellent way to keep them listening.

 

Make it a Dialogue, Not a Monologue

allow webinar participants to submit questions and responses in real time

It’s no secret that the discussions we remember most are the ones we get a chance to participate in; the same holds true for your webinar’s online audience.

As a presenter, you have options. You can choose to speak at them, droning on (and on…and on…) about countless details and facts and risk losing their attention; or, you can speak with them, continuously asking for their input, feedback and opinions to ensure they stay plugged in no matter how long the presentation runs.

You can actually use your webinar software to help with this; today’s webinar technology allows your participants to submit questions and responses in real time. As a host, make moderating and integrating these comments a priority so your attendees remain attentive.

 

Stay Charged!

Don’t underestimate your responsibility to keep everyone listening.

Rule of thumb: it’s not (entirely) about what you say…it really is how you say it. Even the most compelling presentation can have lackluster results if it’s delivered with ho-hum energy. Keeping your online audience engaged is the key to an effective webinar.

Do your part; make an effort to keep your energy level up when speaking to keep your participants connected to what you have to say.

Turn nervousness into excitement by moving around when speaking. Also, whenever possible, create natural-feeling interruptions to help break up the potential monotony of too many consecutive slides. This will help keep your participants plugged-in and on their toes.

Finally, repeat your previous point before moving on to your next one to really reinforce your message to listeners.

The best way to guarantee you have what it takes to give a dynamic speech? Practice. Do as many dry runs as needed to really nail down your delivery to resonate best with attendees.

 

Give Your Online Audience Bragging Rights

Everyone loves a chance to show off what they’ve learned. Keep this in mind during your online presentation. If you’re hosting a training session, tell your online audience that there will be a brief quiz at the event’s conclusion for them to earn professional development credits – it’s a guaranteed way to keep them engaged at all times.

The quiz approach can add value even if you’re not hosting a training event. Use end-of-sessions quizzes to encourage participants to earn points, achieve recognition or even receive discounts off of products to ensure they are encouraged to listen to your webinar.

 

Diversify Your Speakers

Know some industry thought leaders that also love to work a great webinar? Ask them to speak at yours. Creating a panel of presenters who all offer something just a little bit different than everyone else will immediately build buzz around your webinar.

Most importantly, when you do go live, changing hosts can keep the energy up in your virtual meeting room, encouraging everyone logged in to pay attention to the information being shared.

keep your online audience engaged with diverse webinar presenters

 

Test Your Audio

Audio is important during any type of gathering. However, sound quality may prove even more critical during an online session than a face-to-face meeting.

No one wants to hear the dreaded, “can you hear me now?” during a webinar.

If one segment of your attendees are struggling to hear what’s being said, you may find yourself spinning wheels trying to remedy the sound situation while simultaneously losing the interest of the attendees who actually can hear you.

Before you go live, optimize your audio input options based on the system you’re using as well as perform audio checks to ensure your online audience gets the royal sound system treatment.

 

Manage Your Time Wisely

Always consider your listeners’ busy schedules when developing your webinar presentation. No one wants to log into a conference only to feel like they’re being held hostage for the next several hours. Those who stay on at a webinar that is too long (and even those that disconnect before you end) will feel resentful and taken advantage of.

Prove that you value and respect their time by creating a conference that runs no longer than 60 minutes.

As a general rule of thumb, 45 minutes for speaking with 15 minutes at the end for questions should provide a manageable balance for participants to remain attentive throughout the webinar.

 

Set Aside a Specific Q&A Section

You should always allow for questions throughout the session to hold listeners’ attention. However, setting aside time near the end of the event for a final question and answer period can keep attendees listening for the whole webinar.

When sending out an agenda, be sure to list out the different Q&A segments you plan to host. This will help your online audience know that it’s worth staying until the very end to ask their questions. It will also let them know that they will be able to hear what others may inquire about after hearing your presentation in its entirety.

Worried no one will have anything to ask? Fret not; come prepared with some of your own relevant questions to build momentum. Chances are, the rest of your attendees will follow suit.

 

Save the Best for Last

Reward your attendees for tuning in throughout your entire presentation.

After setting aside time for a thorough question and answer segment, you may want to consider offering a giveaway of some sort.

Let participants know that at the end of the discussion, listeners will receive an added perk.  Examples include: free resources, promotional discounts or even access to exclusive products.

In short, never underestimate the power of the freebie to keep your online audience engaged throughout your entire webinar.

 

Conclusion

There are many ways to engage an online audience during your entire webinar. If you use the suggestions above, you’re guaranteed to host a successful online event from start to finish.

If you’re looking for powerful webinar software, BigMarker can help. Sign up for a 14-day free trial today. Or send us a message if you have a question.

 

Webinar Production Essentials: A Complete Technology & Equipment Checklist

Planning your next webinar? Perhaps it’s your first webinar? Regardless of what’s in your pipeline for webinar production, you’ll want to ensure you have the best technology and equipment at hand to be successful.

Many companies and organizations use webinars as a large part of their marketing strategy, which means a reliable in-house set-up is crucial for their webinar production value. If webinars are a big part of your marketing strategy, you’ll need your webinars to be as polished and professional as possible to maximize your marketing impact.

Webinars nowadays have a wide reach when it comes to marketing. Anyone can find an on-demand recorded webinar from your website, social shares, YouTube, emails, blog post; the list goes on! So, you never know who might see it, could be your next customer. Therefore, you should opt always to put your best foot forward when it comes to webinar production.

Read on for the ultimate essentials checklist for webinar production technology.

 

Essential Technology for Webinar Production

 Technology for Webinar Production

Webinar Software:

There are many options available for hosting your webinar. Each platform has a different set of features that in many cases, don’t overlap.

Determine your feature requirements of a webinar platform before researching and make sure to start a free trial as well. You want to determine if the experience on the host and end-users side matches the experience you wish to deliver for your webinar production.

 

Fast Internet Connection:

Streaming a live webinar takes up a lot of internet bandwidth. Ensure you have a fast internet connection or the ability to wire into your network. If you have low broadband speeds or if you’re still on dial-up service, you can count on having frequent delays and connection issues throughout the course of your live webinar.

As part of your webinar production set-up, make sure to test your speed. (We recommend this speed test.)

 

Marketing Automation Platform:

Your webinar platform likely comes with a tool that allows you to build a registration landing page. Your landing page gives your registrants the ability to fill out a form to register for the webinar so you can capture their information. If it doesn’t, you will need a separate solution or tool that allows you to build this registration landing page for each webinar.

Additionally, if your webinar platform does not give you the ability to send out email reminders or updates to webinar registrants, you will need to use a marketing automation platform to do this as well. Emails are a critical part of webinar production, especially when it comes to following up with webinar registrants. You don’t want to leave your audience hanging!

 

Audio Conferencing:

Most webinar platforms come with VoIP, or they will provide a conference line for attendees to dial into. However, not all webinar platforms allow dial-in. In case yours does not, or if the provided audio quality is poor, you might want to source your own audio option to combat against this issue.

 

PowerPoint:

More often than not, a webinar host will run through a PowerPoint presentation during their online event.

If you do not own Microsoft PowerPoint, now is the time to invest or seek an alternative solution like Keynote.  These tools allow you to put together the visual component of your webinar production. Doing so gives you the ability to brand the presentation to your company or share your “voice.”

For example, if your company tends to be quirky or funny, you can show that off in your slides. Some webinar platforms have the ability to upload PowerPoint files directly into the platform as well, which provides a cleaner view for participants.

Video Editing Tool:

Video is huge right now in the marketing space and is a great form of content to integrate into your webinar production.

Chances are you might have existing videos or training sessions recorded that you’d like to share during your webinar. If you plan to use video during your webinars, it’s always a good idea to do a little editing to make it work with all your other webinar content.

For example, if you only want to show 45 seconds of a 90-second video during the webinar, this is your opportunity to not waste any time and cut out the parts of the video you don’t wish to show.

Image Editing Tool:

Image editing tools, like Photoshop, are another worthwhile investment for your webinar production. This is especially true if you have someone on staff with graphic design experience.

You might use an image editing tool to help craft your PowerPoint slides so you can insert branded images. You could also use image editing software to edit a webinar speaker’s headshot and perhaps even use to assist with the creation of your registration page or email invites. Using a tool like this throughout the set-up process of each webinar will help your webinar production look polished and professional.

 

 

As for the equipment part of your webinar production package, this includes the physical equipment you should strongly consider having on-hand for an in-house studio to produce your webinars. Read on for the ultimate essentials checklist for equipment.

 

 

Equipment for Webinar Production

Equipment for Webinar Production

High-quality webcam:

Audiences like to see webinar speakers on webcam.

Seeing the presenter on camera helps attendees connect to the speaker and delivers a more in-person feel. You’ll want to source a high-quality webcam to give your webinar speaker the best chance at looking good.

You won’t want yourself or your co-hosts to look grainy on screen or even worse… your webcam might not work at all. Hopefully, your laptop has a quality webcam built-in, but if you’ve tested it and it isn’t up to par, look at buying webcams that plug in via USB to your laptop or computer.

 

Lighting:

If you’re on webcam, it’s ALL about the lighting. Without proper lighting equipment, your webinar speaker could be left looking washed out or completely overshadowed. Review this article for fun tips on using lighting to your advantage while on webcam!

Backdrop:

A backdrop is a staged background behind the webinar speaker. This is only required if you plan on using a webcam during the webinar.

Instead of having a messy desk or boring white wall behind you showing up in the video feed, you can purchase a backdrop set to control the entire camera view. During your webinar production you can customize your own backdrop to have the company logo or other landscape of your choosing. Having a backdrop is a cool touch to add to the experience of your webinar.

 

Microphone:

While your computer or laptop likely has an internal mic already built-in, we encourage investing in a standalone mic to achieve superior sound quality.

This could be a headset microphone or a mic that sits on your desk.

If you plan to be on webcam, we highlight suggest a discreet microphone, and only use a headset that is not very visible. Otherwise the webinar host might look more like a call operator and than the industry expert they are.

Laptop or computer:

It’s no secret that you’ll need a computer or laptop to host a webinar.

In many cases you’ll need multiple computers to facilitate your webinars. This is especially true if you plan to have multiple webinar hosts. However, it is not unheard of for some folks to only use a phone nowadays. It’s even rumored that Marketing Guru, Gary Vaynerchuk, only uses his smartphone and no longer has a laptop, for example.

Even though this one might seem like a no-brainer, it’s important to discuss all of the necessary equipment and technical requirements with everyone involved in your webinar production as far in advance as you can. This will ensure everyone is adequately prepared before you go live.

Also, if you’re on a laptop, make sure your charger is nearby. Webinars can quickly drain your battery. You don’t want to have that snafu – big ouch!

 

 

Webinar Production Budgeting

Now that we’ve run through the essentials checklist for the technology and equipment you should consider investing in as part of your webinar production, we want to discuss the dreaded topic of budget.

You likely already have a budget in mind for what you want to spend on webinar production, or what budget you are allowed to spend from your boss.

If you do have the budget to move forward with the highest quality technology and equipment then, by all means, please do this. You won’t regret it.

However, you can quickly drive up costs by going with the top of the line options for everything we listed above, which might not work for you. If you need to start small or bootstrap your way when it comes to webinar production, that is ok! We believe in your hustle.

If you don’t have the budget then you’ll need to pick and choose what technology and equipment to initially invest in. You will want to scope out all the essential items above, pick your ideal technology and equipment to purchase, then price it out and match against your budget.

While every item above is an essential for professional webinar production, if you’re bootstrapped on the budget, consider the below essentials first and foremost before purchasing anything else:

 

Top 4 Webinar Production Essentials:

  1. Webinar platform – this alone accounts for what will make or break your registrant’s webinar experience with you. Plus, you need a way to host a webinar! Select a webinar platform that fits within your budget, but will allow you to provide the best experience. From the registration process, to signing in, the live webinar and finally even leaving the webinar. This is not the item to skimp on.

 

  1. Fast Internet Connection – nowadays, most people have fast internet connection, or an option to directly wire into the network. If you don’t, this should be a top priority.

 

  1. Lighting – if you plan to be on webcam, lighting is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to make a good impression. Whether it’s a lamp from home or professional lighting. This is a must-have.

 

  1. PowerPoint – most webinars use a PowerPoint presentation throughout their webinar anyway. So, since you likely already have this software, check out our blog on perfecting the webinar PowerPoint design!

 

Get started!

As mentioned, you’ll need high quality webinar software to ensure your webinar production is a success from start to finish. Check out BigMarker today for a modern, feature-rich webinar experience that both you and your audience will love. Start your 14-day free trial now or send us a message to get in touch.

Webinar Marketing 101: A Guide To Effectively Use Webinars As Part Of Your Marketing Strategy

Webinar marketing has proven value in virtually any promotional mix.

Still, some modern business owners hesitate to include webinars in their marketing strategies, for a wide range of reasons. Some believe that their current efforts are “good enough” and feel reluctant to change their approach. Others are apprehensive about learning a new technology and fear that they will have an on-air lapse that will derail their presentation. Some may even worry about the presentation itself; they are convinced that they have nothing of value to say.

Fortunately, executives in every industry often discover that their webinar marketing fears are unfounded. From a technology standpoint, partnering with a provider of an innovative and intuitive virtual conference system quickly eliminates the fear of live presentation glitches. Additionally, many professionals are surprised to learn they actually do have a lot to share with their audience.

Whether it’s hosting an online demonstration for a new product, providing a slide deck of recent industry trends, or even just hosting a question and answer session about a current hot topic, there are limitless ways to add value with followers using webinar marketing.

 

Stop Missing Out On Webinar Marketing Benefits

If you are not including webinar marketing in your current promotional approach, you may be missing out on an extensive range of brand-building benefits. Many entrepreneurs and businesses who are late to adopt a webinar marketing strategy quickly realize that their former content marketing strategy really wasn’t enough at all. Just one webinar session can help business owners tap into a wealth of advantages.

Unlike most advertising resources that only provide a marketing monologue (aka – your brand speaking at consumers), webinar marketing opens up ample opportunity for an actual dialogue with your targeted demographic. Not only does webinar hosting grant you a chance to engage with your audience, it also provides a platform for you to inform them. More specifically, webinars are an ideal marketing channel for you to inform your customer base about services, offerings, and topics they actually want to hear about. What else in your promotional mix can do that?

Finally, webinar marketing offers long-term, sustainable brand traction. You and your team get to further your corporate exposure and reach with every hosted session as well as provide a personalized dynamic to your overall brand identity. Your audience gets to put a face and voice to your business name to help you quickly build trust and credibility. An online conference can both generate new leads as well as further nurture current prospects in your pipeline as you move forward towards the ultimate goal of any marketing pursuit – a sale.

Moving Forward With Webinar Marketing In Your Branding Strategy

Once you’ve decided to include webinars in your branding campaigns, it’s important to put together a plan on how you’ll achieve your corporate promotional goals and objectives. Much like other resources in your advertising initiatives, it’s critical to develop a webinar marketing strategy to optimize use and results. When putting together your webinar marketing approach, consider the key steps to success shared in the following paragraphs.

 

Know What You Want To Achieve

Effective webinar marketing begins with detailing exactly what you want to achieve using this medium. Sure, you may have some general ideas about number of listeners, leads, and total conversions; however, it is imperative to outline your promotional purpose as well as how you will accomplish these objectives. Webinars can help achieve several marketing goals, including:

  • New prospects
  • Lead conversion
  • Strengthening of brand identity and overall consumer exposure
  • Establish industry expertise
  • Develop mailing list for advertisements/newsletters

Beyond general objectives, you’ll also want to decide in advance what services/products you want to highlight, what type of promotions and discounts you will offer, and how many deals you’d like to close to develop a concrete tracking method of what works and what may require modification in the future. You’ll also need to decide whether to host live, recorded or automated webinars (or a combination of all three) to deliver your webinar marketing content.

 

Pinpoint The Right Topic

Never underestimate the importance of finding the right topic for discussion. The first rule in determining what you should talk about? Remember it’s not about you; it’s all about your audience. In order to connect with and captivate your listeners, you must zero in on a subject that will intrigue them. Fortunately, you don’t have to unearth the ideal focus area alone. Most business owners simply ask their consumers for input when putting together their webinar marketing presentation. Send a survey to existing and potential customers asking about what they’d like to discuss or learn more about and use it for guidance moving forward.

Remember, you don’t have to talk about everything you find on a survey. In fact, you shouldn’t. Covering too many topics in one webinar marketing session can overwhelm listeners. Stick to one relevant idea where you can establish your industry expertise as well as help your audience solve a related problem to truly add value and solidify their perception of you as a go-to resource.

 

 

Topics for your webinar marketing approach

 

Leverage Partnerships And Affiliations

Another way to rely on others to help boost your webinar marketing results? Invite guest speakers to participate in your events. Leverage the partnerships and affiliations you have to broaden the spectrum and reach of the discussion. Showcasing industry thought leaders as guest speakers during your session will instantly further the breadth of your webinar marketing efforts beyond your existing customer base and help you stretch into other relevant demographics.

Of course, before you can advertise your guest presenters, you will have to convince them to take the gig. When promoting your webinars, be sure to pitch your expected audience size and how your webinar marketing can make an impact on their marketing efforts as well. In short, be ready to sell what’s in it for them.

Even if you don’t yet have an extensive network of industry-innovating partners at the ready, or if you’re working with a small marketing budget, you can still offer guest speakers at your next webinar. Nothing says that a co-speaker has to come from outside of your company. Tap into the wealth of knowledge held by your own staff members by asking them to host various pieces of the webinar. Not only can they keep your audience engaged, having them speak adds another level of familiarity/personalization between your brand and your consumers.

 

Plan Lead Time Wisely

In order to reap maximum results from your webinar marketing, you must strategically plan your lead time to optimize your registration numbers for your upcoming webinars.

As a general rule of thumb, you will not want to wait too long between your webinar announcement and actual webinar date, as it runs the risk of having registrants forget what they signed up for. Whenever possible, allow for two weeks of lead time, especially if it’s your first webinar. Having a longer registration stretch means you can utilize a comprehensive range of resources to market the upcoming event. Consider both free and paid promotional channels to give your event the publicity it deserves.

Planning your lead time wisely also gives you the ability to carefully monitor trends in your signup numbers. Slower registration spans means you will have time to amp up your webinar marketing promotional efforts before game day. Likewise, spotting surges in attendance before the webinar may mean you’ll want to break up the event into separate sessions to accommodate everyone. Remember, when first hosting webinars, initial attendance may seem light. However, don’t let this deter you; as you continue to establish your brand as an authority in your vertical, you should see overall momentum begin to increase.

 

Reward Your Participants

If you do notice a downturn in registrations, consider rewarding guests who have signed up. Offer free perks such as e-books, downloadable materials, and even a link to view the webinar again at a later date. If you have a product line you’re hoping to promote, offer exclusive samples to everyone who registers as further incentive.

You can also run a pre-event contest on your corporate social media pages to cross promote both your conference as well as your brand. Create a fun hashtag for your event and encourage those who register to post on their pages for a chance to win a special gift even before they attend your webinar. These webinar marketing tactics not only makes registrants feel valued, it also increases the odds that they will tell others about your event, driving up attendance numbers for you.

 

Optimize Your Presentation

Yes, shamelessly self-promoting throughout the entire presentation can feel forced (as well as possibly make your audience uncomfortable). However, you should still optimize your presentation materials to make the biggest impact possible on guests.

Include specific brand imaging (both for your and your guest speakers) throughout the webinar marketing materials as a subtle way to remind your audience who you are. Also, always include Q&A segments throughout your presentation for added promotional return on investment. Fielding inquiries from your audience not only keeps them tuned into your webinar, it also provides a more organic, less-contrived opportunity to endorse the value of your services and products to a live audience.

Don’t Miss A Chance To Reconnect

Many webinar hosts do a stellar job connecting with registrant before their event. However, they fail to reengage with them after the session has ended. Your job as marketer doesn’t end with your webinar. Everyone who registers for your webinar should be considered a lead worthy of follow up. Once again, planning is critical to promotional success. You and your team should go through the list of attendees to determine where each person falls in your sales funnel. Are they an existing contact? A new referral from an affiliate? An existing client? Determining the status of every registrant can help you develop a customized webinar marketing approach for next steps.

After you’ve gone through your lead list, work with your team to develop strategies on how you should engage with each prospect.  Forwarding materials, soliciting feedback, promoting future webinars and even directly marketing products and services are all ways to reengage with attendees and help convert them from webinar lead to actual customer.

 

Webinar marketing strategy lead generation

 

Picking the Right Software

Finally, you’ll want to pick a webinar software that will maximize the ROI of your webinar marketing efforts. Luckily, the choice for marketers is easy. BigMarker is the only webinar platform that comes with a complete stack of marketing capabilities that’ll provide robust solutions for your webinar hosting from start-to-finish. To get started, sign up for a 14-day free trial today, or send us a message if you have a question about getting started.

 

 

 

 

 

Sources

https://www.forbes.com/sites/drewhendricks/2015/02/19/5-killer-tips-for-marketing-with-webinars-in-2015/2/#632c0d556139

http://www.business2community.com/digital-marketing/8-reasons-webinar-great-marketing-tool-01042162#yCCJzzSyeggu0xxc.97