With the cancellation of in-person events for the foreseeable future, webinars are now more popular than ever for marketers looking to connect with their audiences and achieve their goals. But with the surging popularity of webinars comes increased competition for getting customers and prospects to tune in.
With so many webinar choices today and with audiences often left with so little time thanks to increased professional or personal expectations thanks to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, how do marketers ensure that they are maximizing their webinar attendance? Here are four tips:
1. Choose your topic wisely. Zoom fatigue, Teams fatigue and webinar fatigue are all very real today. People are burned out on online meetings and virtual events. And with so many businesses organizing webinars, these events tend to blur together. As you are starting to plan your webinar, be sure to do some research on what your competitors are currently offering in the way of online events. Once you have a feel for the current landscape of webinar offerings, brainstorm a list of compelling topics that are missing. What have other people not covered? Or what niche audience can you appeal to? For example, instead of a broad webinar on HR software solutions, you could instead aim your focus on HR software solutions for a certain market size or industry.
2. Be engaging. To increase your webinar attendance, you will need more than just words on slides. No one wants to sit in a 45-minute webinar where they are mostly reading words on a screen. Try to make it interactive by taking questions from your attendees or conducting quick polls throughout the webinar. Make it feel like a conversation, so it doesn’t just feel like you are talking at your audience the entire time. Tailor the webinar as much as possible to those attending, so they really feel like they’re getting something out of it. If you host an engaging webinar, people are more likely to come back for your next event and to spread the word to others.
3. Carefully consider timing. Did we mention that virtual event fatigue is real? In addition to a compelling topic designed to be presented in an engaging way, carefully consider the timing of your webinar. When selecting a day of the week, Mondays and Fridays are best avoided. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays are all good choices. Late mornings just before lunch and mid-afternoon are all good times of day to draw more attendees and interaction. Try to avoid lunchtime, as people don’t often want to give up a break in their day to attend yet another online meeting. Also remember to keep it short and sweet; an hour or less for the presentation and the Q&A is ideal.
4. Get the word out. Social media is a great place to promote webinars. Be sure to do so starting a few weeks before your event date and post regular reminders throughout that time. Email invites to your customers and/or prospects are also an easy way to draw attendance. Depending on your topic and goals, you may want to boost social posts or create a small digital ad budget for your webinar. You can also partner with another company or an industry influencer to help expand your audience and maximize your webinar attendance.