Brand awareness is vital, relationship building is a must, and educating your customers will certainly help boost the adoption of your products and services. But at the end of the day, many of us are running webinars because we want to drive sales.
From top-of-funnel thought leadership sessions to mid-funnel positioning webinars and bottom-funnel product demos, webinars come in all shapes and sizes. But, no matter how you use webinars to go to market, the most effective experiences have a few key elements in common.
Read on to learn how to create webinars that sell.
1. Deliver a clear message
A clear message will help you capture your audience’s attention and keep them engaged throughout the webinar. When attendees understand the purpose and focus of the webinar, they are more likely to actively participate, ask questions and stay involved. Defining and refining your message will ensure an impactful and successful event.
Although the ultimate goal is to create webinars that sell, audiences attend because they want to educate themselves, solve a problem and learn something. By providing valuable content that educates, inspires and empowers your audiences, you will more effectively increase brand awareness, loyalty and sales opportunities.
2. Keep your audiences engaged
Effectively qualifying your leads begins with learning more about them. Gated content and form fills can uncover details on how to contact them, the industry they work in and their role within their organization. But nurturing prospects through the buying journey requires understanding their unique pain points, needs and preferences.
The best sales and marketing webinars offer unique opportunities for marketers to capture those details. By actively engaging attendees through polls, Q&A, live chat, two-way breakout discussions, surveys and links to additional resources, you can better understand who they are and the pain points they are looking to solve. A 360-degree view of each attendee will help you guide them toward a purchase decision.
3. Set sales triggers to find intent
If someone attends your webinar, does that make them a sales-ready lead? What if they download ten whitepapers? There’s a huge difference between interest and intent, and building sales triggers into your webinars will make it a lot easier to spot the difference.
Sales triggers can come in the form of CTAs, including links to product pages, pricing pages, free trials, appointment settings, demos and even QR codes to product promotions and purchasing opportunities. This will help you identify the webinar attendees ready to move to the next step in their buying journey.
You can also set up polls to trigger email follow-ups based on the unique responses of your audience. Meanwhile, your sales teams can use all the engagement data you generated throughout the webinar to shape the conversation around that unique individual.
4. Engage before and after the webinar
Now that we’ve established the importance of engaging your webinar audiences, let’s talk pre and post-event. The sooner you engage attendees before the live event, the more likely they are to attend. It also gives you a chance to establish a relationship and build a bit of credibility before the webinar.
A pre-webinar engagement strategy can include confirmation landing pages embedded with surveys on the topics registrants are most interested in learning about, links to ancillary resources or direct mail that gets people excited about the experience.
As for follow-up, most marketers send a “thanks for attending!” email with a link to the recording or on-demand version (if you’re not doing this, start), which is a great way to stay top of mind. However, with all the competition, it doesn’t hurt to have an edge.
Maybe your follow-up email includes a link to a landing page customized with relevant resources based on the content they engaged with during the webinar. These targeted pages can also include demo videos, invitations to upcoming webinars and events, and book-a-meeting CTAs. You can even integrate short videos of sales reps introducing themselves and offering help.
5. Put engagement data in the hands of sales
That’s a wrap; your webinar is over and your work is done, right? Wrong. This is go time. According to Forrester, you have 24 hours to follow up if you want to be as effective as possible. And not just any follow-up. Personalized follow-up. But how can you achieve all that in just 24 hours?
Integrating your digital engagement data into your CRM and MAP workflows allows you to put attendees on automated nurture tracks based on the data collected during the webinar. You can also streamline this first-party data collected from your webinars directly into the hands of your sales teams to trigger action and help them start warmer introductions, increasing their odds of closing a deal.
You might want to check out these virtual selling hacks for more tricks on getting the most from your sales and marketing webinars.