You have the guests. You have the technology. You even have a hashtag all set. Yet, for some reason, you still have not been able to increase the attendance rate of your past and future webinars, otherwise known as webcasts.
The paucity of attendees to your webinars, whether they’re live or pre-recorded, is something that troubles a lot of brands that utilize online seminars. When you have just a couple of people watching your webinar, you feel disheartened and discouraged. You ultimately believe it was a wasted investment and a waste of time because not too many people were a part of your webinar.
It really is compelling to look at the numbers and see just how consistent webinar attendance rates are across various industries. The average webinar attendance rate is between 40 and 50 percent of registrants – that number shoots up to 60 percent depending on the source.
Webinars are superb business development strategies to employ. A webinar platform can help you conduct a killer webinar that will develop your brand, you become an authority on the topic and you garner the trust of your customers and prospects. Moreover, webinars become an easier way to get in front of a large audience (there are nearly three billion people using the Internet today!).
But what good does it do to host a webinar if no one is actually watching it?
This is why some brands and marketers are initially apprehensive about presenting a webinar. They feel that if they only have an attendance rate under 30 of 40 percent that it’s a waste of time and resources. If that is the percentage you’re experiencing then it’s about time you take another look at how you get your attendees in the first place.
Here are eight tips to maximize the attendance of your webinars:
Choose the Right Topic
Whether you’re in the computer engineering industry or you’re deeply involved in digital marketing, you will want to select a topic that is both interesting and unique. What this means is that you shouldn’t pick a topic that has been beaten to death and has been talked about so many times. You want to select an issue that has not been discussed, a subject matter in which you offer new insight and problem that needs to be solved right away. By choosing the right topic, you can draw in new viewers every time.
Incentivize the Attendance
Sometimes, you will just need to incentivize the attendance. In other words, not only will you be offering attendees some very interesting information, commentary and data, but you will also be giving your attendees free promotions, resources and stuff (ebooks, discounts and white papers). Anything that can attract and lure people to increase your webinar attendance the better it is for your brand and the value of your webinar.
Launch a Social Media Campaign
Indeed, you should definitely have a hashtag to complement your webinar. At the same time, however, you need to go beyond something as simple as a hashtag and a Facebook page. Instead, you should be leveraging Facebook and LinkedIn’s PPC (Pay Per-Click) and CPM (Cost Per impression) advertisements, taking advantage of Twitter’s Periscope application and employing Instagram by taking a behind the scenes look at the webinar. Social media can amplify the attendance rate of your webinar.
Be Interactive With Your Audience
During your webinar, you won’t just be talking and talking. Instead, you’ll be interacting with your audience. This consists of hosting a question and answer segment, presenting polls in your slides and ensuring that your audience will receive something valuable by the time your webinar is finished. Nobody wants to watch a 30-minute webinar that just consists of being spoken at (remember, our attention spans don’t last very long when we’re on the Internet these days!). They want to feel like they’re having a conversation.
Pick the Right Day & Time
Marketing and tech experts can’t emphasize this point enough: you must select the right day and time of your webinar.
If your webinar is being presented on a Monday morning then it’s quite likely that very little people will view it (no one will skip work just to take part in your live webinar). Moreover, no one will be in the mood to attend a webinar on a Friday night and they won’t want to sacrifice family time on a Sunday afternoon.
Ultimately, the best time to host a webinar is on a Wednesday or a Thursday at noon, according to top business coach, sales and marketing expert Yoon Cannon
Start a Landing Page
On your website, you should have a landing page specifically for your webinar.
This landing page will provide visitors with offers, resources and an outline as to what will happen during the webinar. The landing page is meant to be effective at increasing your webinar’s sign up numbers. Therefore, the landing page should be designed very well, promoted across the Internet and have a clear call-to-action (CTA).
It’s best to avoid promoting your webinar directly on your website because it’s quite likely that visitors will be distracted by all of the other information on your corporate web portal. At the same time, it won’t hurt to have a link to the webinar.
In order to ensure the webinar attracts the attention it deserves, you should have a clear, crisp and detailed landing page.
Write About Your Webinar
Your blog has become an important facet of your business. It allows you to offer tips to your clients, share updates about your business and to opine on the latest industry news. It is also a web space that can give you an opportunity to blog about your webinar, before and after.
Whether you have a new host for your webinar or you’ve just completed the recording of your webinar, your blog should be a place to write about your webcast. By doing so, you’re reminding regular visitors and informing new visitors of an upcoming webinar where they can learn about your brand and what you have to offer.
Moreover, a webinar can give you various content marketing materials. You can analyze a certain portion of your webinar, you can profile one of your webinar’s guests and you can share how much of an interesting experience you had throughout the webinar. In this aspect, content is king.
Simply put: blog about your webinar.
Email a Couple of Thank Yous& Reminders
Finally, you should send a couple of thank you and reminder emails to the registrants. By doing this, you will show your appreciation for your visitors signing up to attend the webinar and you will also ensure that they will attend your webinar. You shouldn’t remind them every day of the webinar. Instead, if they have signed up one month in advance, you should email them once a week later and then another time the day before just to make sure that they know about the webinar.
Here are a few other tips to keep in mind:
- Do not make your webinars too frequent; you must leave your audience wanting more but never cave in to that ferocious appetite.
- Avoid talking about your company’s products or services.
- Try to partner up with another business in your field or a media outlet.
- Emphasize scarcity of your webinar (only a certain number of people can attend). Remember the principles of scarcity!
A webinar is an effective tool to grow your brand, transform yourself into an authority and to increase your clientele. No matter how much you prepare, plan and process your webinar, it doesn’t mean a thing unless you actually have a high attendance rate, which is something you should aim for.
Whether you’re new to the world of webinars or you’re just starting, your brand’s goal should be maximum attendance. If you have 100 registrants then you want to make sure that all 100 are attending. This is achieved by making your webinar must-see and can’t-miss.
Once you employ the aforementioned tips then you will see your attendance rates go up. Even as they rise, you should always look to improve by exploring different avenues and utilizing new tools.