Successful webinars work. They help you connect with customers and grow your business. What’s more, they take you to the place where most of your current and potential customers are spending their time – online. But it’s a crowded market populated with some abysmal performances that lose participants in their first 10 minutes. The good news is that, based on our experience, there are a few simple rules that you can follow to ensure you attract the people you want, successfully communicate with them and help grow your business.
Prepare your storyline and content
Customers are looking for solutions to some of the key issues facing them. As for any other successful business development conversation, make sure you understand what these key issues are and ensure the content succinctly address them. Under no circumstances start with the product or service you want to sell. This comes only at the end. Make sure you interact with participants. They’re there to learn from you so give them this opportunity. Invest in a ghostwriter and communications trainer if necessary. This will help ensure that you have great content to share upfront, you’re entertaining and comfortable with answering questions.
Ensure focussed and timely communications
Prepare a succinct communications plan to ensure that you optimise awareness and participation. Pick a date and time that does not clash with any major events and is convenient for participants. Prepare a concise headline and summarise what participants will learn at the webinar and how long it will take (30 – 60 minutes and no more). Send the invitation out at least a month in advance with reminders regularly including the day before and the day of. Invest in a targeted digital media ad campaign to optimise participation. This can include, for example, a short video on its key benefits.
Practice, Practice, Practice
Never wing it! Practice until you feel confident and can deliver the content in a natural and conversational tone. Don’t be shy about recording your practice sessions so that you can review and improve. Make sure the webinar technology works and that the sound is clear. Remember that people will judge you on the visuals first so ensure you have an appropriate background and that you look professional – to fit your audience.
Thank the participants and include a link to the presentation and webinar in a follow-up email. Ask them how you can help them further and keep in contact. Having prepared the communications ahead of schedule will ensure that this process runs as smoothly as possible.
These tips are based on webinars we have conducted for chambers of commerce as well as for clients from different industry sectors. We’d love to receive your feedback on what type of webinars you’d be interested in e.g. transformation communications, digital media, digital business development.
Dr. Alfred Köcher provides companies, organisations and business leaders with the tools they need to become opinion, market and industry leaders – with a range of programmes and campaigns that ensure ongoing success. He has a wealth of experience in strategic communications and reputation management as well as in business development programs.