Whitepaper: How to Engage More Viewers With Your Upcoming Webinars
12.07.2017

Whitepaper: How to Engage More Viewers With Your Upcoming Webinars

Whitepaper
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In this day and age it makes sense for businesses to make use of modern technology by incorporating it into their marketing strategy. A great example of this is hosting webinars; and with over 60% of marketers using them as part of their content marketing programs according to the Content Marketing Institute, there is clearly something in it.

What is a Webinar?

A webinar is simply a meeting that takes place in real-time over the internet. A host connects to an audience who are then able to watch and listen to a presentation or discussion as it happens. There are several different types of webinar; a live webinar that is streamed at a specified time; on-demand webinars that enable viewers to watch them at anytime; audio webinars that include slides with only audio, and video webinars that are streamed through video.

 

Source: WorkCast

Why use Webinars?

There are a number of advantages to integrating webinars into your marketing strategy, including:

How to Attract Viewers

Taking the time to effectively promote your webinar is vital to its overall success. Although a large number of registrants sign up on the actual day of the event, it is worth noting that many also do so more than two weeks before. Therefore, committing to a promotional campaign weeks in advance of your webinar will give it the best chance to attract as many viewers as possible.


Source: ON24 2016 Webinar Benchmarks Report

There are several other ways that you can ensure you are getting plenty of sign ups, including:

Send Promotional Messages Mid-Week

When you're sending out emails to encourage people to register for your event you want to do it at a time when they are most likely to engage. Research has shown that the middle of the week, from Tuesday to Thursday, are the optimum days for this. The worst days are Saturday and Sunday, when obviously most people are no longer in work mode and therefore not very receptive to emails.

Pick an Interesting Topic

Admittedly this is an obvious one, but it is worth emphasising as it is so important. If your webinar topic is neither exciting or intriguing your potential audience are unlikely to register. You need to find something that will be of a high enough value to convince people to take the time out of their day to sign up and watch; so it must be something that they feel is going to benefit them in some way.

Use Your Mailing List

According to ReadyTalk, email is the top tool for webinar promotion, with a score of 4.46 out of 5, compared to social media's ranking of 2.77. With this in mind, where better to find potential registrants than your own mailing list? Just make sure that you are inviting those who will find some value in the event, for example do not include people to a webinar about a product that they have already bought.

Schedule it Carefully

According to ON24'S 2016 Webinar Benchmarks Report, Wednesday is the best day to attract people to a webinar, with a total of 30%, followed by Thursday with 25% and Tuesday with 21%. When it comes to choosing a time to schedule your event for, things are a little more complicated if you are expecting a geographically diverse audience. However, in general you should avoid commuting hours and the lunch hour, with ON24 citing 11am Pacific Time (2pm Eastern Time) as the optimum hour for gaining the largest audience posible.

How to Keep Your Audience Engaged

After you've gone to the trouble of promoting your event and hopefully gaining a large potential audience, you'll want to make sure that your webinar is as engaging as possible. Here are some things to bear in mind:

Pick the Right Speaker

Choosing the right host for your webinar is crucial to making sure that your audience keeps watching; Redback Conferencing found that 48% of people said that these events were made least enjoyable when there was a poor presenter. Pick someone who has an in-depth-knowledge of the subject, but is also engaging and a clear speaker. This could be someone in-house, but bear in mind that having an expert who is not affiliated with your company will instantly lend more credibility to your webinar overall. It may also be useful to have another person available who can work on the technological aspects of the event, to make sure it runs as smoothly as possible and so that your speaker can focus entirely on their role.

Viewing Time

Although it may tempting to make your webinar as short as possible so that your audience doesn't start to get bored, studies have shown that in reality the average viewing time is around 57 minutes. This may sound like a lot of work, but by the time you've added all the information and allocated time for audience interaction (more on that later), it should come together nicely.

Pay Attention to the Aesthetics

Of course you'll want to focus on the content of your webinar, but don't leave the appearance of your slides as an afterthought. Making your presentation as clear and attractive as possible will help keep your audience engaged. Use different colours to segment and highlight information, and make sure that your slides are easy to read; no tiny text or strange fonts and try to keep the word count to a minimum for each one.

Audience Interaction

Just having a host speaking to your audience for an hour or so probably isn't going to be very engaging. Adding options for your viewers to interact with you during the event is a great way to make it memorable and to ensure that they keep watching until the end. Examples of tools you can use for this include:

Give Them Something

Offering a promotion or giveaway as part of your webinar is a great way to keep the attention of your attendees. This could take the form of a discount, a free trial, a report or a coaching session; as long as it is seen as valuable to your audience then they will want to stick around to find out more.

Global Database Recommends...

By now you hopefully have a better understanding of what a successful webinar entails and how to put this into practice. When it comes to setting your event up, our experts at Global Database recommend keeping in mind the following points:

 

 

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