In an era of intense Zoom fatigue, it’s increasingly tough as a brand to make an ask of your audience—or new audiences. Even something as seemingly simple as sitting through a 30-minute webinar, which would’ve been an exciting touchpoint six months ago, is now a bigger ask. Yet these touchpoints are key to generating new leads and reengaging existing ones. So how do you justify that calendar real estate for your next big webinar?
As ever, we recommend starting with your desired outcome and working from that baseline. When determining your outcome, it’s important to ask some hard questions:
Is the webinar to generate net new leads?
Is it to push top-of-funnel leads down and re-engage your current audience?
Are you looking to increase consumption or usage with your current customers?
Once you’ve determined the intended outcome, it’s important to quantify what ROI you’re looking for. The impact of your webinar comes from how much—money or time—you’re willing to invest and what outcome you feel justifies that investment. Is converting one TOFU lead to pipe enough? Will 50 net new names register and get added to your database for nurture be enough? Is it one prospect committing to a call post event? How you execute will ultimately drive the end results, so think clearly about your goal to start and ensure your plan supports the goals.
Putting Yourself Out There
If you want to generate net new leads, you need to ensure going into the event that you’re fishing outside your own pond. Marketing to your own database and social media followers will only re-engage your current audience, but it won’t drive new names. To expand your reach, be prepared to invest in paid advertising (LinkedIn is especially powerful for B2B targeting) or co-sponsor the webinar with someone. Do you have a great client whose network is complementary to your own that, through promotions, you can tap into their database?
Content is Key
When you’re considering content, it’s essential to keep it concise, clear cut and educational to drive conversions. Be specific about what attendees will walk away with, including three or four bullets on a landing page which can be used to drive registration. Your webinar title and speaker will get people to the page itself, so don’t overlook the power of a witty but relevant title that speaks to your audience's pain points. Additionally, make sure you are offering a POV unique to your brand and speaker and educating attendees, not selling to them.
To that end, keep in constant contact with your potential attendees. It’s important to focus content towards registrants leading up the event, but remember to keep your reminders friendly and casual. Set the tone and expectation of the webinar by creating a teaser drip; do you have video of these speakers presenting before you can send? Some additional bullets you can share about the topic? Make your webinar a must-attend event so they prioritize it over that budget meeting that just got added to their calendar.
While having people watch live is great, on average only about 33 percent of registrants attend events as they happen. Any number of conflicts can prevent a live viewing, but some guests simply want the slides to review on their own time. Leveraging your full slide deck as a post-event asset can be a valuable touchpoint with registrants who didn’t attend the event in person; the deck can also be used to spark a post-event debrief one-on-one with an expert. A full slide deck can also be repurposed into more consumable content like a “top takeaways” one-pager or email campaign.
The important thing to remember is that a webinar itself is just a starting point. Your team put a lot of time and effort into creating that content, practicing—pro tip: remember to practice—and executing the event, so have the webinar be the kickoff point to amplifying your message. Consider additional assets like 30-second sizzle videos, follow-up blogs (“What We Didn’t Get Into in Yesterday’s Webinar”), email nurture campaigns, and an on-demand replay for lead generation via content syndication. The true impact of your webinar may come from the additional content fodder it provides for weeks post-event.
While breaking through the barrier of virtual event fatigue is a tough business, the juice is definitely worth the squeeze. The engagement of a successful webinar, and the collateral assets that come from it, can be key components of a winning nurture strategy.