Forget video, webinar content is king. Webinars have come a long way since the days when you’d sign up for one only to find yourself listening to a thinly disguised sales pitch with patchy audio and static slides. These days, marketers from a broad range of industries are aware of the educational pulling power, geographic reach and cost-effective engagement offered by webinars.
One-off webinars are giving way to webinar programs that are an integral part of the marketing and communications plan— generating leads, educating customers and bringing organisations together. And marketers are seeing results, with 7 in 10 regarding webinars as a “key part” of their marketing and communications mix. But questions remain over how effectively brands distribute and market their webinar programs—plus how effectively they integrate webinars into the sales and marketing funnel, and measure success.
To learn more about the state of webinar marketing in 2019 and benchmark your own webinar programs against industry standards, read the report by Redback Connect and ON24’s.
Keep reading to discover 10 reasons why webinars are valuable for every business.
Reason 1: You Can Deliver Tremendous Value
Webinars are truly unlike anything else; if done right, you can keep your audience engaged for hours on end and that’s something that videos put simply, struggle to do. Not only that, but your audience can also ask questions and get real-time feedback on the training. You can ask also your audience questions and tailor your content in real-time to better serve your audience. You can get your audience to take action and have some small micro-wins of their own. This leads to transformations throughout the content, and it can happen within a super short period of time – which is why webinars are some of the highest converting forms of marketing.
Reason 2: They Position you as an Expert in your Field
It’s a free webinar… Who cares? Well, your audience does. And just because it’s “free” doesn’t mean they’re not exchanging anything for the content. To attend a webinar, your prospect has to register, put the date in her calendar and give you 1–3 hours of their time. They do ALL of this just to listen to you talk about a certain subject; this positions you as an expert before you even start teaching the content.
Reason 3: You Can Make Sales without Selling Hard
With the right kind of content, your webinars should soft-sell your prospects without ever having to “hard close” anybody. A lot of businesses make the mistake of teaching and THEN selling, when in reality, the best webinars teach AND sell at the same time.
Effective webinar content should showcase problems, negate objections, and deliver value without teaching too much. The content should teach your audience WHAT to want. The “what” is your product, and by the time you make the offer, the entire audience already wants it. This makes the sale much more natural, and no hard selling is required.
Reason 4: You Can Communicate with Hundreds of People from Anywhere in the World
This is one of the greatest reasons why webinars are the best. The ability to have a conversation with hundreds of people… virtually, right over the internet. Oh yeah, and did I mention that you never even have to leave the comfort of your computer chair, beach chair, or whatever chair you prefer?
It’s no question that having a 1-on-1, in-person conversation with a prospect would be the most effective way to earn your business a new customer. But doing a remote webinar that allows you to connect with hundreds of people from anywhere? Well, yeah, these logistics make sense.
Reason 5: They Keep Your Audience Engaged
Firstly, with a video, the viewer knows that she can pause it and come back at any time… that’s not the case with webinars. If your prospect leaves or misses the webinar, she will feel the pain of missing out.
The second reason is conversational engagement. With webinars, your audience gets a voice. They can chat, vocalise opinions, asks questions, answer questions, and more. When someone is asking questions and chatting about what they’re being taught, they’re more focused and engaged by default.
Reason 6: You Can Generate New Leads
Almost every business is driven by leads. A business with more than enough leads will never struggle to grow. Unfortunately, most businesses lack high-quality lead-generation, and webinars are a great way to attract new eyes, generate new leads, and ultimately convert new customers.
With webinars, some kind of registration is expected. People are familiar with submitting their name, email, and sometimes other information in order to register for an upcoming webinar event. They’ve highlighted themselves as a lead that is interested in whatever you’re teaching, and they’ve opted in to hear more about it.
Reason 7: You Can Qualify New Leads and Build Relationships
There’s no better way to build a relationship than by giving value first. Generally, the first step in making a sale is related to education. Webinars give us the opportunity to teach our leads and help them understand why our product is valuable in the first place. Webinars will allow your audience to place a name with a face and a voice with a name. They allow you to build personal relationships and have real-time conversations.
Reason 8: You Can Invite Guests and Leverage Their Audience (And Credibility!)
When you invite an industry influencer or specialized guest to your webinar, they’re usually more than happy to help leverage their audience to drive attendees. Besides for just getting exposure, you can also borrow your guests’ credibility! Bringing on an industry expert will position you further as an expert, since that person is associating their name with your brand. It will increase overall excitement, attendance rates, and social media sharing.
Reason 9: You Can Attract Affiliates with a Proven-to-Convert Webinar
Affiliates want something that A) will convert well and B) will deliver value to their customers. If they’re not going to make money from sending traffic, then they’re not going to promote. If affiliates sent traffic straight to your homepage, the conversions would be absolutely horrible.
The great news is that once you run a webinar for the first time, now you have stats for your webinar — stats such as earnings per registrant, earnings per attendee, and earnings per click. These stats (along with a replay of your webinar) will help you attract influencers and industry partners to promote your webinar. Since they know the average earnings per registrant, they’ll have an idea of how much $ they can generate in commissions before ever even starting the promotion.
Reason 10: You Can Speed Up your Sales Process and Get an ROI Faster
As a company, it’s revenue that helps your business grow. Companies live and die by cash flow, especially if you have a bootstrapped company like we do. So, the faster you can convert a lead into a customer, the better of you’ll be. Webinars can really help speed up this process. Why? Simply because they take all of the initial funnel-steps and merge them together; they let you build trust, deliver value, and kill objections in a small period of time.
Webinars are powerful, and certainly there are a lot more than 10 reasons to run them. Hopefully this list inspires you to get out there and use webinars in your business, whether they’re for lead generation, sales, training, or all of the above. The point of this article is that the downside is much smaller (if it even exists at all) in comparison to the upside — the potential.
This article was originally published on Demio.