If webinars aren’t part of your marketing strategy, you’re missing an enormous opportunity. According to 73% of marketers and sales leaders, webinars are the best way to generate high-quality B2B leads, and they’ve become even more impactful since the shift to virtual events and communication.
I’ve worked with a few clients who used webinars to generate leads, but I saw it reach a new level at Deliverr, where we have a heavily webinar-focused marketing strategy, particularly for our partnerships arm.
Running a successful webinar requires finesse. After organizing and executing webinars with multiple eCommerce brands, tools, and marketplaces, I’ve put together a few webinar marketing strategies and tips to keep you sane.
This guide takes you through strategies, templates, and tools to help you conquer webinars and generate leads.
Quick note: These are tips for executing webinars behind the scenes. I haven’t gotten in front of the camera, but if you’re looking for advice, here are some great presentation tips from Presentation Panda.
An introduction to webinars
Let’s cover the basics first. A webinar is an online seminar where a host presents information to an online audience. This involves the use of software that enables the sharing of slides, screens, and videos — but more on that later.
Webinars are a popular marketing tool across all industries, but particularly in software and tech, financial services, consulting, and education.
In these sectors, webinars are commonly used for:
- Customer onboarding and training
- Marketing and lead generation
- Employee training
- All-hands meetings
- Industry, press, and analyst events
Benefits of running webinars
1) Expand your reach
Webinars are online, which means they can be consumed by anyone with an Internet connection. If recorded and available on-demand, they can be accessed by even more people after the event. This allows you to reach your audience wherever they’re located.
2) Engage your audience
Would you finish a blog that took an hour to read, or watch a YouTube video of similar length? Probably not. Yet, more than two-thirds of registrations are for 60-minute webinars.
This is because they’re easy to consume, can be interactive, and utilize scarcity (the fear of missing out on something good), giving you a powerful tool to engage your audience.
3) Move customers down the buyers’ journey
Webinars are an excellent way to guide prospects along the customer journey. Whether it’s generating leads, converting sales, onboarding customers, or increasing lifetime value, you can find a webinar format that delivers results.
4) Gain unique insights
Interactive webinars provide audience insights and data that would be difficult to obtain elsewhere. Polls, Q&As, and surveys can help you uncover pain points, trends, and opinions that are useful for your sales team.
5) Showcase your expertise
Webinars offer a platform to demonstrate your expertise and that of your partners. This builds authority and credibility in your industry and among your customers.
6) Deliver value
Finally, webinars deliver value to your customers. Whether that’s knowledge, insider information, or product updates, they benefit your audience and encourage reciprocity, which can generate high customer lifetime value.
A step-by-step guide to marketing and executing an eCommerce webinar
Pour yourself a cup of coffee and get ready for a detailed, tactical dive into every step of planning, marketing, and executing an eCommerce webinar.
Step 1: Define your goals and audience
First, you want to understand your audience and set your goals.
There are two main types of webinar goals.
- Business goals: This is what you want your webinar to achieve. For example, generating new leads, nurturing existing leads, supporting the onboarding process, revealing a new product, or retaining customers.
- Webinar goals: These are your performance expectations for your webinar. For example, webinar registrations, live attendance, and how many people watched the replay.
Collaboration is crucial. Work with your sales, marketing, and support teams to identify goals that produce a positive business impact. Webinars without purpose are a waste of time and resources.
Tip: Make sure your goals are SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound). “Generating new leads” isn’t a SMART goal, but “generating five new quote requests in the week following the webinar via the webinar link” is.
To achieve your overall webinar goal, your webinar must have a relevant audience.
Again, use your sales, marketing, and support teams to identify the right audience and create a customer persona to target. When doing this, remember your goal — having a webinar with 1,000 attendees is great, but if none of them need or use your product, why are you talking to them?
Step 2: Find the right topic
Pick a topic that delivers value to your audience while driving action relevant to your goal. A webinar is not a sales pitch; it should cover something your audience cares about, while indirectly promoting your brand, product, or service.
For example, if you’re running a B2B eCommerce SaaS, your webinar shouldn’t spotlight your customers (you have case studies for that). You should focus on equipping merchants for growth, optimizing their operations, and saving them time and money.
Break down webinars by verticals (ex. CPG), subject matter (ex. marketing), or marketplace (ex. Walmart.com), and focus on how to amplify 10x an eCommerce business within that domain. At the end, introduce your value and how it can add to that 10x effort.
Great sources for topic inspiration are:
- Your sales team – What pain points do they hear about repeatedly? What are the most common obstacles to conversion?
- Your support team – What questions or misconceptions keep reappearing in support tickets?
- Your audience – What are they talking or asking about on social media and forums?
- Your blogs – What topics are people searching for, reading about, and converting on the most?
Tip: Shift the focus away from your brand and toward a subject that will help your audience succeed. Think of it this way: No one is interested in your brand, but they are interested in how to grow their business.
Step 3: Pick your webinar toolkit
In terms of technical requirements, you’ll need webinar/broadcasting software, project management software, and scheduling tools.
In the summer of 2020, I ran Deliverr’s first annual Discoverr conference, a two-day virtual event consisting of a series of webinars with industry leaders and successful merchants.
Back then, I was busy figuring out the right tech stack and had to get scrappy with some makeshift workarounds. I learned that the tools you use can make or break you.
There are two types of tools required to run a webinar: setup hardware and webinar software.
The bare minimum you (and all your webinar speakers) need to run your webinar is a reliable Internet connection and a computer. However, if you want to add a professional feel to your production, you can use:
- A microphone with a stand and pop filter
- A high-quality webcam
- Studio lighting or graphically designed backgrounds
Webinar hosting software is the backbone of your webinar. When researching software, the main features to look for are:
- Registration — What is the maximum number of live attendees per webinar?
- Ease of use for attendees — Can people join from their desktop computers and phones? Do they need to download software?
- Ease of use for speakers — How easy is it for guest speakers to join? Can everyone control their own slides?
- Webinar room features — Can you turn on/off Q&A, chat, surveys, and polls? Can you set Q&A to private?
- Broadcasting features — Is there built-in live streaming? Can you share a video or recording for part or all of the webinar?
- Content sharing — Can you upload slides, videos, and share screens? Can attendees download slides?
- Post-webinar — Will there be a recording you can download? Will the recording be emailed to registrants? Can you download your registrant list?
Take a look at some popular webinar software tools below.
Livestorm is a browser-based webinar tool with a great UI and easy registration page setup. This is the software I chose for Discoverr, as it allowed for thousands of live attendees with unlimited registrants. I’ve used them for hundreds of eCommerce webinars thanks to how easy it is for speakers and attendees to join.
Note: The only time I’ve ever had an issue was when we first started using it and a webinar room became so full it kicked out one of the speakers.
Demio is a hassle-free webinar tool that allows you to host multi-session events, on-demand webinars, customize email notifications, brand your registration pages, and more. It comes with easy onboarding and features built on the foresight of their marketing-focused founders.
Note: Demio is a client of mine.
Zoom has become a household name over the past few months, but its capabilities extend beyond the virtual family quiz night. Zoom Video Webinar provides HD webinars with on-demand viewing, analytics, host controls, interactivity features, and event assistance. However, be aware that it requires a strong bandwidth to perform adequately.
If you’re just starting out, Zoom has a fairly generous free plan that includes up to 100 participants and a 40-minute limit (as of this writing).
GoToWebinar is an all-in-one webinar tool with features like invitations, videos, polls, sharing, data, and automatic invites and follow-up emails. Note that GoToWebinar is not as customizable as other platforms, which may make it unsuitable for larger brands.
Tip: If you track your leads and deal stages in HubSpot, GoToWebinar has an excellent HubSpot integration.
ClickMeeting is an easy-to-use webinar platform that comes with tools for organizing, running, and analyzing events. Its three plans are customizable to different needs. However, it lacks phone support and allows only a limited number of presenters.
WebinarNinja is useful because you can hold multi-session webinars. They’re an excellent option if you’d like to put on a series of webinars with different speakers, but only require one registration from attendees. They’ll send out a welcome email with unique links to each webinar in that series upon registration, which attendees can click on to access each session.
I’ve used Demio and Livestorm previously and found them easy to use. Both are browser-based with robust features, so I recommend them if you’re looking to incorporate webinars into your overall growth strategy and make it easy for registrants to attend.
Step 4: Iron out your webinar details
What do you want your webinar to look like? A webinar can take many formats, and you’ll need to examine your overall goals to determine which is best for you.
Most of the webinars I’ve hosted and attended were an hour long. The first 5 minutes are a quick introduction, followed by 45 minutes of content, and then 10 minutes of Q&A.
I’ve also seen shorter webinars for product demos, and longer ones for in-depth teaching events. You can adjust the length of your webinar based on your needs, but make sure to pad extra time at the end if you aren’t sure.
Tip: Double-check your webinar software won’t automatically end once it hits a certain time. Some of the common webinar tools have time limits, especially if you’re on the free plan.
Choosing the ideal time and date
Finding a suitable time and date can be a complicated process, especially if you have more than one business participating.
The ideal time to host a webinar is 11 a.m. or 2 p.m. on a Thursday. If you’re targeting a consumer audience, though, you may want to aim for evenings and weekends.
Don’t forget timezones! If your audience is scattered across the country (or globe), find a time that is convenient for the majority. For example, 11 a.m. PST is 2 p.m. EST.
Your webinar format must suit the topic. For example, a product release demo should be internal (no outside guests) and include screen sharing. An industry trends update can utilize a live panel format with guests from adjacent organizations.
Here are some examples:
- A teaching webinar where a founder/owner or marketing director speaks directly to registrants.
- A round table for your users, where you invite registrants to ask you anything (i.e. AMA).
- An interview-style webinar where you (the host) can ask your guest(s) questions.
- A joint Q&A where the audience can ask you and partner companies questions via a chat box and get answers live.
- A joint webinar where you partner with other brands to teach registrants about a certain topic.
- A hybrid of the above, such as a joint lesson with brand partners, with the second half of the webinar reserved for live Q&A.
For examples 3 to 6 above, you’ll regularly need to find partners to collaborate with, adding an extra level of organization and collaboration to the entire process (which we’ll go over below).
The top webinar formats I’ve found most engaging are:
- A keynote speech-type webinar, where a company introduces a topic they’re experts in. This is the most common type of webinar I’ve encountered and can be held in partnership with other companies.
- A panel-style webinar, where multiple company representatives discuss various topics, usually led by a separate host or moderator. You can also do a panel of team members from the same company, but different departments, if you’re covering a new feature release or something similar.
- A live demo for onboarding, where a company activates signups by teaching them how to engage with the service. Typically, there is only one speaker who runs the presentation and Q&A.
A fool-proof webinar template
The perfect webinar depends on your goal, audience, and format. To spark your inspiration, let’s look at the components of a webinar.
1) Title page
The title page is what your audience sees before the webinar begins. It’s an excellent opportunity to remind your audience what they’re waiting for to get them excited.
Include the title, a brief description, and the names of your key speakers. You could even add a countdown timer to build anticipation and tell people how long they have to grab a snack.
Always open with an introduction of the host and guest speakers. This establishes a relationship from the beginning and builds a rapport to prevent people from leaving.
Your introduction slide should include:
- Headshots, especially if you’re not using video.
- Name and job titles so viewers can identify who is speaking.
- A short bio to establish credibility and expertise.
- LinkedIn and Twitter handles to encourage connections.
The Aristotle triptych says, “Tell them what you are going to tell them, tell them, then tell them what you told them.”
An agenda sets your audience’s expectations and helps keep them engaged by promising that the best part is still to come. Agendas are also useful to deter questions on topics covered later and to gear up your audience for any final Q&As.
Now, it’s time to tell them. Your presentation should form the bulk of your webinar, but forget long scripts, vast chunks of text, and boring slides – this is your moment to sparkle.
Bring life to your webinar through:
- Storytelling – Make the presentation personal and relatable.
- Visual aids – Use graphics and animations.
- Interactivity – Run polls and surveys.
- Imagery – Use photographs and videos.
- Application – Add stats and information relevant to your audience.
While live webinars work best for interactive content, there may be circumstances where you want to deliver an entirely or partially recorded webinar; for example, a product demo where the presenter plays a recorded video of the demonstration, then opens up the chat to live Q&A for attendees.
Various webinar tools have the option for on-demand webinars, where the registration page takes the registrant to a recording. The recording can be a previous webinar or something that was recorded specifically for the on-demand webinar.
A recap slide is perfect to tell your audience what you just told them and reinforce your message. It’s also a useful prompt for the host should they miss anything they wanted to cover.
After telling your audience what you want to say, you need to tell them what to do about it. Include a powerful and clear call to action at the end of your webinar that’s relevant to your goal.
This could be directing them to a webpage, a free trial, your blog, or a registration page for next month’s webinar.
A question and answer section allows your audience to play an active role in your webinar and can generate useful insights for your sales and marketing team. Q&As can be run using audio or chat boxes.
It’s helpful to assign someone responsibility for filtering and collating questions, then delivering them to your host. You also can plant some initial questions to get the ball rolling.
I recommend setting questions to private so your internal team can see and answer them. When questions are viewed publicly, attendees can get stuck on one topic.
Pro tip: Use the Q&A section to generate more content ideas. You can repurpose your attendees’ questions to fuel your content calendar.
I recommend keeping questions open throughout your webinars and fielding questions in real-time. You can set aside the best questions for your speakers to answer live at the end, and simultaneously garner insights into what your audience wants to know.
Some of my best-performing articles were inspired by the Q&A section in my webinars, because we were able to find the content most relevant to our audience.
8) Thank you and repeated CTA
Lastly, thank your audience for their time, repeat your call to action, and let everyone get on with their day.
Step 5: Find partners for co-webinars
To maintain a robust webinar marketing strategy, you need to present webinars consistently and reliably. So, how do you guarantee consistency with so many moving pieces?
One way is to run regular webinars that only involve someone from your company. For example, a co-founder can hold monthly Q&A sessions on his/her product/company that’s open to anyone who registers.
However, I recommend partnering with other companies for maximum reach (ie. leads) and value in terms of what the webinar will bring to the table. Two founders sharing experiences, case studies, and strategies will provide more insight than one, and if you rotate partners regularly, your audience will always have a fresh, new perspective and reasons to sign up.
If you have a healthy integrations library, your integration partners should be your bread and butter. You already have existing relationships with those companies, and webinar attendees receive double the incentive to sign up for one or both of your services.
One strategy I follow is scheduling an integration partner weekly on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, and opening up every Thursday or Friday for other potential webinar opportunities.
Tip: For sanity’s sake, as you start out, I recommend limiting your goal to two webinars per week at most.
Since your company already has contacts from your integration partners, simply reach out and say:
“We’re starting a co-webinar series with all of our integration partners. Are you (or someone from your team) interested in joining us for a joint webinar on [proposed title/topic]? We’re happy to brainstorm other topics we can cover together.”
Now, on to the more challenging part: pitching a co-webinar to your dream partners.
These might be companies, founders, managers, etc., who are already in your network, but don’t have any integrations or business ties with you. Or, they could be companies you admire in your industry, but haven’t worked with yet.
Start with your network, reaching out to people and companies you already communicate with, then look for possible introductions on LinkedIn.
Tip: If you’re reaching out to a company for the first time, try signing up for their email newsletter, then start a relationship from there.
Pro tip: Incorporate existing partners’ upcoming events into your planning.
If you have close co-marketing or business relationships with adjacent companies, send out a quarterly or yearly survey asking about any upcoming events they have planned.
Information to capture in your survey
- Company email address – Your main partner’s marketing contact.
- Planned (owned) events for the upcoming year/quarter – What events do they have on the horizon where you could contribute?
- Channels they plan to prioritize – Will they be focusing on the blog? On webinars? You can tailor your pitches based on the channels they want to invest more time into.
- Prioritized topics on their blog and webinar calendars – Which topics are they most interested in covering? Do you have expertise to offer for any of them?
- Topics of their expertise – This is useful so you can reach out when you’re planning a relevant webinar.
Step 6: Stay organized
Once someone says yes to a joint webinar, jump into dates and details you need from them. For example, you could ask for:
- Confirmation of the webinar title and outline (or, if you haven’t discussed this yet, pitch a few topics/titles).
- Full name, email address, bio, and headshot of their speaker(s).
- Their logo (and a white version for darker backgrounds) to put on your marketing materials.
- A finalized date and time of the webinar itself, plus a run-through the day before (or a few days in advance).
Be sure to manage expectations during this stage as well. Some things you might want to clarify include:
- Whether you will share the registrant list and emails.
- Whether there will be a shared recording.
- When (or if) you and your partner will announce the webinars in your email newsletters.
Include a summary and FAQ doc for your partners
Bring as much relevant information to your kick-off meeting as possible to answer questions that might arise. You can do this by creating a shared Google Doc with the following points to collaborate and decide on:
- Webinar title
- Placeholder for dates (at this stage, you may not have the final dates yet)
- Webinar date
- Rehearsal date (with a note that all content should be finalized by then)
- Placeholder for landing page link (or unique links per partner, if you choose to incorporate UTM tags)
- Speakers and their titles
- Outline of the webinar
- Which speaker will cover each topic
- How long each section should be
- Marketing dates for each partner, along with the type of promotion (email, social)
Below the webinar details, you should include some frequently asked questions from partners, including:
- How/whether leads will be shared.
- The average volume of registrants and attendance.
- The software you’ll use.
- Whether recordings will be shared.
- Anything else unique to your process. Ex. if you require partners to record a video introducing themselves for your marketing materials.
You can download and use my free webinar planning template to keep everyone aligned on important dates, files, promotions, and common FAQs in your joint webinar.
Send the shared Google Doc early so your partners can fill in their information and get their questions answered, instead of spending meeting time on the same topics.
To organize the dates, I recommend sending out Google Calendar invites to block off your target time and date on everyone’s calendars. Another approach is to use scheduling software like Calendly, then send your calendar links to partners and ask them to book the timeslot most convenient for them.
Make sure you sync your calendars to avoid double-booking, mistakenly showing reserved times as available, or allowing them to book time in your off-hours (ie. the weekend, or middle of the night if you’re in different timezones).
When you confirm the time and date, start building your registration page. Create a shared Google Slides file where you and your partners can collaborate on your presentation.
Tip: Some companies have VAs who control founders’ calendars. If you’re going to run multiple webinars every week as part of your strategy, getting a VA to act as a gatekeeper for a founders’ speaking schedule is a great investment.
As a rule of thumb, you want to schedule a few meetings prior to the actual webinar to learn the software and rehearse content. These meetings should include the host, organizer, guest speakers, and tech support (if this is a separate department).
Be sure to block out time on everyone’s calendars for:
- Content planning and software setup – Confirm outline, slides, and introduce speakers to the software.
- Rehearsal – A day or two in advance, run through the slides and rehearse with everyone using your webinar software.
- Webinar – The actual event. Don’t forget to pad 15 minutes of time for people to come on beforehand for sound checks.
Don’t forget to test
Technology has a habit of going wrong just when you need it. Avoid tech problems during your event by testing everything in advance.
At the very least, you should complete a dry run with your host and speakers the day before the webinar, and a technical test the morning of the event.
Things to watch out for:
- Connectivity problems
- Tool functionalities (e.g.. surveys)
- Sound and lighting
- Camera positioning
- Recording and saving
Step 7: Webinar marketing
Make sure to align on co-marketing in the planning and organization stage!
Here, having co-webinar partners is extremely helpful. If you both agree to send out announcements and webinar reminders, your webinar could potentially double in reach compared to you trying to market it alone.
I recommend requesting:
- Social media shares in the week leading up to the webinar. Twitter can be daily, LinkedIn should be once or twice max, and Facebook can be two to three times.
- An email announcement the week before the webinar, and a reminder the day before to register.
- A guest blog exchange with CTAs at the end of the posts to register for the webinar. You should aim for these blogs to go live two weeks before the webinar to give them time to gain traction, be announced on newsletters, etc.
If your partners have a unique email newsletter schedule(monthly, weekly), ask to be in whichever issue is closest to the webinar date. Their email schedules don’t need to change to suit your preferences (after all, you’re the one asking in the first place). I’ve also seen partners send out three or more emails weekly and blast the webinars more than usual. It goes both ways.
How to promote your eCommerce webinar
Stepping back all the way to the registration stage, let’s discuss webinar marketing. Your webinar marketing strategy should outline a multi-channel approach to promote your upcoming event.
Planning and organizing a webinar ensures the event runs smoothly, but marketing determines the quality of the leads you obtain. You’ll invest significant time in hosting these webinars, so you want the most promising leads possible from them.
1) Find the right promotion timeline
If you promote your webinar too early, people will forget, but promote too late and schedules will already be full.
Luckily, GoToWebinar has crunched the numbers for you:
- 15% of registrations happen three to four weeks before the webinar.
- 69% of registrations happen the week before the webinar.
- 33% of registrations happen the day of the webinar.
- Tuesdays are the best day for registrations.
- Most registrations happen between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.
Start marketing your webinar four weeks before the event and ramp up your efforts the week it occurs, all the way up to the day of.
2) Build a registration page that converts
Your webinar sign-up page is an important marketing component as well. Create an enticing online registration page that features:
- A catchy title that’s informative and intriguing.
- Bullet points covering what people will learn from the webinar.
- The names and expertise of any guest speakers.
- The date, time, and length of the event.
You can further optimize your page to drive registrations by including testimonials, a countdown timer, and references to the webinar being free (if it is).
3) Share your webinar everywhere
The more places you mention your webinar, the more people will hear about it (and hopefully sign up). Promotional activities should cover:
- Website: Reference and link to your webinar in your blogs, guest blogs, and on your website. You can use pop-ups and banners to highlight the event as well.
- Emails: Promote the upcoming webinar in your email newsletter, and talk to your partners to see if they’re willing to share with their audiences.
- Social media: Hype up your webinar on your social pages, and pin the announcement to the top of your feeds. You can also create a hashtag on social media for big events, or for a webinar series.
- Advertising: For big events, you can use ads on social media or Google search ads to share your webinar across the web. If you use print or digital signage, consider adding the webinar announcement to these too.
- Mobile notifications: Use in-app push notifications or automated text messaging to alert existing audiences to your webinar.
- Customer-facing teams: Be sure to brief sales and support teams about the webinar schedule so they can share relevant events with your customers. Consider having them add a CTA to their email signatures as well.
- Guest speaker network: If you invite another team to join a webinar, work with guest speakers and their brands to promote the event to their audiences.
- Registrants: In your confirmation email or post-registration thank you page, encourage registrants to share that they are attending on social media.
4) Master your post-webinar communications
The end of the webinar isn’t the end of your marketing. A post-webinar email reinforces your message, directs people to your CTA, reengages those who didn’t attend, and gathers essential feedback.
Send an email after the event thanking people for their attendance. Provide a link to the recording, attach relevant information, and repeat your CTA in it. You can also include a link to any feedback surveys you create.
Tip: Take this opportunity to promote upcoming webinars. Tell them to bookmark your events page, or have them subscribe to an email newsletter that will announce future events.
Step 8: Execution
Building a registration page
Your registration page should deliver a clear outline of what the webinar will cover, and how attendees will benefit from the event. Use bullet points, showcase speaker expertise in their bios, and keep things short and sweet.
The branding of your webinar is fundamental. Consistent branding looks professional and makes your webinar easier to follow, as well as creates familiarity, which can lead to trust and eventually conversions.
Maintain consistent colors, fonts, and styling throughout your presentation. Take advantage of the footer space by including your logo and website, partner logo and website, and the event hashtag or Twitter handle.
Use your confirmation emails
Throughout the webinar planning and execution, you need to ensure crystal clear communications.
Registration doesn’t automatically guarantee attendance. Once someone has signed up for your webinar, run a drip-feed email campaign similar to the following:
- Upon registration – Confirmation and a calendar placeholder.
- One week before – Final information, such as guest speakers.
- The day before – Reminder and log-in details.
- The day of – Reminder and technical support details.
Many webinar tools can handle these on your behalf, so make sure to set them up in your software to avoid missing any reminders.
Emails can be supplemented with SMS messages and even telephone calls – anything to generate excitement and encourage attendance.
Run through a webinar rehearsal
As the webinar date draws near, you should have a run-through the day before the event. Often, the speakers don’t put together the slides themselves, so this is their chance to run through them, talk about the flow, make requests, and more.
Here’s what to cover during the run-through:
- Who will welcome attendees.
- Whether or not you’ll start the recording on time or one to two minutes after to give everyone a chance to join.
- The flow of the webinar and where speaker handoffs will be.
- Reminders, such as using headphones.
- Whether your video cameras will be on or not.
During the webinar
During the webinar, I recommend having two people present to represent your company. One is the speaker, and the other handles questions in the chat. In especially busy webinars, you’ll get more questions than your speakers can answer live, so having someone share resources, tips, and answers as questions come in can improve the attendees’ experience.
- Before the webinar begins, have one of the speakers welcome attendees and let them know it’ll start shortly.
- Once the webinar begins, welcome everyone and go through housekeeping (whether the recording will be emailed after, if there will be time for a Q&A at the end, etc.).
- Non-speakers should keep their mics off at all times, and speakers should turn their mics off when they aren’t presenting.
Step 9: Post-event marketing
After the webinar, provide plenty of options for interested parties to watch the recording. I set Deliverr’s old webinars to be available on-demand, which means if you have the registration page link, you can register to watch the recording immediately. I also shared them on YouTube and with our partners, some of whom published them on their blogs.
Another idea (that I haven’t tested out yet) is to create a dedicated webinar page that has recordings of past webinars and links to register for upcoming ones.
Step 10: Measurement
Finally, it’s time to measure. There are mixed reactions to this; some marketers live and breathe metrics, while others take a cursory glance and are satisfied. I fall somewhere in the middle, but there are a few important elements to analyze (don’t worry, it’s not too much).
Use your goals to identify the metrics you need to monitor, how you’ll measure them, and when you’ll analyze them. While analytics might not be your favorite step, it’s crucial to show:
- The impact of your webinar (which can generate bigger budgets and more support).
- The success of your marketing (which can improve future attendance).
- The overall event ROI (which tells you how much time and budget to allocate in the future).
How did your webinar perform against its overall goal? For example, how many people registered for the free trial, how many customers are using the new feature, or how many new blog sign-ups were there?
You can gain this information from website analytics, sales and support teams, and webinar feedback surveys.
How well did the webinar perform? Look at the number of registrations, live attendees, and post-event engagement (ie. if they watched the recording). You should also look at which advertising and content channels generated the greatest return.
Tip: Use percentages instead of figures. The number of people attending your webinar doesn’t tell you much, especially if you’re marketing to a very small or large audience. The percentage of people attending your webinar vs. the number of registrations will provide better insight.
This section also includes feedback on technical problems and software glitches gathered from the host, speakers, audience, tech team, and organizers. If there’s negative feedback, drill down into whether this was caused by user error (requiring more training) or software error (requiring feedback to your software provider).
Common webinar KPIs include:
1) Registration count: Indicates how successful your marketing was, but registrations vary by partner.
2) Live-attendee-to-registrant ratio: Shows your audience’s level of interest in that topic, which provides insight into how well you chose the title, framed the description, timed reminders, etc. It also highlights problems with your post-registration/pre-event marketing.
I’ve seen an average of 40%-50% of registrants attending live, but I’ve also heard from other partners that 20% is a solid attendance rate. It’ll fluctuate as your list grows.
3) Interest (views, registrants, etc.): In your webinar recording and wherever else you shared it, such as YouTube or leaving it available on demand.
Tip: Look at the number of emails you sent versus registrations to see how well your email campaigns performed and if your lists are segmented well for relevance and interest.
4) Results in relation to other webinars: It’s particularly important to look at your attendee-to-registrant ratio in comparison to your other webinars. As you build up a webinar “bank,” you’ll be able to see which ones do better than others in terms of registrants, turnout, etc.
5) Engagement: Look at the number of questions asked, responses to any polls you held, how many times attendees raised their hands, and similar metrics. This will help you identify how relevant the content was and how much your audience was paying attention throughout the webinar.
Paired with the methods you and your partners used to market the webinar, this will give you critical insight into the schedules, announcement techniques, days of the week, and marketing strategies that work best.
Webinars aren’t just a lead magnet (although they’re pretty good at that, too). They’re an effective tool for driving action, upselling customers, engaging audiences, and establishing industry authority.
But a webinar is only as good as its strategy. By creating and executing a defined webinar and marketing strategy, you can ensure your webinar targets the right audience, generates high attendance, encourages action, and delivers positive business impact now and in the future.
Any thoughts or questions on the above? I’d love to hear from you! Please reach out on LinkedIn.