webinar conceptwebinar concept

In these socially distant times, businesses want to find new ways to connect to customers, fans, and potential leads. Most digital marketing tactics are as relevant as ever, but one that seems as though it’s set to surge is conducting impactful webinars. 

Before the coronavirus pandemic, people were already aware of the power of webinars. According to a report from InsideSales.com, 73% of marketing and sales leaders said webinars are the second most effective way to generate quality leads. Only “small executive events” ranked higher (77%)—and right now, no one is holding such events. 

Webinars, when done right, are an effective way to expose your business to a large audience—whether your business is B2B, direct-to-consumer, or anything in between. Now, as we are collectively stuck at home (as well as in the future, when business regains a sense of normalcy), webinars allow for intimate and real-time interaction. You can explain complex topics, connect with your audience, and demonstrate the value of your business in a short time frame. 

In other words, webinars are vehicles for building your brand—and trust and loyalty along with it.

If you’re new to the concept of the webinar as a marketing and lead generation tool, let’s review some key ways to get a return on investment for your webinar. The first steps you’ll need to take are to set up your webinar infrastructure. That means creating a landing page where you can collect email sign-ups (emails that can be used for future marketing endeavors), testing your technical equipment, and creating a slide deck to present your case. 

Once you’re ready to start broadcasting, here’s how to glean marketing value from your webinars: 

1. Build your brand with timely presentations

When it comes to webinars, you want to read the room. What’s on the minds of your existing and potential customers that your business can speak to? A perfect example is the novel coronavirus outbreak. If you run a B2B business, how can you channel your expertise into a presentation that informs, reassures, or otherwise provides value to other business owners? 

A webinar that is more evergreen—a topic that will have value a year from now as well as today—is a good idea, too, but you may find more traction on social media and through search with a topic that people are looking for information on now. 

Of course, pick a topic that aligns with your brand and expertise—the more authentic you can be, the better. Focus on the part of your business that relates to the topic, lay out goals you want the webinar to achieve, and prepare to answer questions that relate to both what your business can provide as well as the topic more generally. 

Tackling questions in the moment may present a unique challenge, but this real-time response helps to build your brand as a thought leader and your business as a conversation driver. 

2. Collect emails for follow-up engagement

One of the main reasons why any business should hold a webinar is to collect email addresses. Email marketing is effective—it has one of the highest ROIs of any digital marketing tactic; email addresses serve as the gas in your tank here. 

Originally published at All Business

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