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7 steps: How to create your webinar from scratch!

Ready. Set. Action!

The use of B2B video marketing is on the rise. It’s time to tell your story in front of a camera to reach more buyers in 2020 and beyond. As a B2B marketer, you already consider webinar as one of the important video content types to educate and engage your audience.

Why You Should Use Webinars

One of the main benefits of webinars is they are location flexible. The host can be living in one part of the world while the guest and audience members partake in the webinar from anywhere elsewhere in the world.

This gives your audience a better chance of attending a webinar, as opposed to physically attending a seminar (or conference), where they have to book a flight and reserve a hotel room.

Webinars are also flexible in regards to format. The content in a webinar can be recorded and shared or repurposed in a variety of formats. And of course, the webinar can be made available on-demand, serving as an excellent lead magnet for years to come!

Before getting into the seven steps for webinar success, it is important to clarify the purpose of your webinar.

Is it to generate leads, grow your list, sell a product, or onboard new users?

The seven steps for that successful webinar

To understand these 7 Steps, it’s important to understand their overall trajectory, from your first concept for the webinar to potential success metric, whatever that is (sales opportunity, sale, channel signup etc). Each step will only be as effective as the ones before it, so it’s a good idea to consider the whole process before delving into the particulars.

The 7 Steps are:

1. Selecting the team

2. Choosing the topic

3. Deciding the format

4. Planning out the content

5. Picking the right date and time

6. Marketing the webinar

7. Converting the attendees/non-attendees

To get to that last step, it’s vital that the other steps are well executed. All seven work in tandem, building on each other and multiplying the effect of each.

Step 1: Selecting the team

A webinar usually has three prime players. The success of your session depends on them, and I recommend that you carefully consider your options when selecting the following:

The Organizer: The organizer or the facilitator is the key individual responsible for developing content for the webinar. They are also responsible for finding a suitable speaker and promoting the event. They are in charge of registrations and communicating with the participants at the beginning and end of the webinar.

The Presenter(s): The Presenters or the Subject Matter Experts should focus on developing and delivering the webinar presentation. They look after webinar programming and troubleshooting, event registration, and other details to help them deliver an engaging presentation.

Assistant(s): Assistants help in answering queries that the Presenter and the Facilitator don’t have much time for. They help by responding to technical queries. (For example, “The audio and video are not in sync!” or “There is no sound!”) Assistant(s) are often required for webinars with a large audience.

Start doing dry runs which will help everyone involved with the webinar get a picture of its entirety. Check all equipment and tools to ensure they are working properly.

Step 2: Choosing the topic

Always focus on content first. You must maintain high editorial standards.

People attend webinars to learn. So you need to make sure you are offering topics they find interesting. One of your goals is to demonstrate your authority as an information source.

You must show that you know your stuff and that you’re in-tune with whatever’s going on in your space.

To have a powerful webinar, you need to narrow it down to a specific topic that will be informative to your target audience.

Once you have selected your topic, you need to ask yourself the following questions:

Is there a particular question your clients and potential audience frequently ask that you could address in a webinar?

What are your strengths, and what would be really entertaining for you to teach?

What would be the most valuable thing you can offer within 30 or 45 minutes?

Step 3: Deciding the format

Choose a format that will best relay your message while engaging your audience. You can consider the following four webinar formats:

Single Speaker: As the name suggests, this involves a single speaker communicating with the attendees. The speaker will also demonstrate the contents of the webinar and answer all queries raised by the attendees. I recommend this type of webinar if you have a small audience.

Interview Format: This involves a speaker acting as an interviewer and asking a set of predetermined questions to the Subject Matter Expert(s). This type of webinar can be very engaging, with the attendees watching the SMEs answer questions. It also encourages them to ask questions, making it interesting.

Moderated Panel Discussion: Like a panel discussion, a panel webinar has several speakers who talk over a predetermined topic. A moderator will need to facilitate this type of webinar.

Q&A: Similar to the interview format, this type of webinar also allows the speaker to answer questions, but this time, the questions directly come from the audience. I recommend that you collect the questions beforehand. This will ensure that you stay on schedule and vet the questions coming from the audience. Q&A segments are usually added at the end of all webinar formats.

Step 4: Planning out the content

Planning is crucial If you want to construct a webinar that’s engaging from start to finish. Webinars that involve the presenters running through subjects in chaos and stumbling aren’t the best and most memorable. If you plan your webinar right, it should deliver on your promise, and have the perfect amount of content for your audience to absorb. Get your presenters and moderators prepped prior to the webinar and always have a trial run to test for synchronization

When you know the topic and purpose of your webinar, it shouldn’t be hard to create an outline. Remember that the average webinar lasts about 40-60 minutes, so that’s the standard timeframe you’re going to work with. If you’re creating a prerecorded webinar, create a storyboard first, just like a film director would.

The content you provide throughout the webinar should be engaging enough to keep the participants until the end. You can also tease a bonus at the start, to create an incentive to keep watching. Then, it should naturally lead into a conversion link or product signup, if that’s a part of your webinar’s purpose. Also, remember not to push your product upfront as that may backfire.

Always start by welcoming participants. Ask them where they are joining you from, and you’ll create instant engagement.

Make the participants sure that’s the right place for them to be, by specifying who will benefit from the webinar. Also, introduce not only the subject of your webinar, but also your presenters with their credentials. Start with a relatable story to prove they're trustworthy and keep it brief.

Remember to always save some time in the end for a Q&A session. Mention it at the beginning so that the audience will have time to think through the questions they want to ask.

Keep mobile in mind - Not everyone who views your webinar will do so on a desktop computer. Did you know that roughly 25 percent of attendees tune into webinars via their mobile devices? That’s a significant chunk of viewers you can lose out on if you don’t optimize for mobile.

Step 5: Picking the right date and time

Though it's difficult to pick the best time to run the webinar, do factor in the convenience of your core audience. The general rule of thumb is to schedule a webinar for the middle of the week, Tuesday to Thursday. However, as most of the audience spend more time at home due to the virus situation, they are likely to be flexible, given the right topic of interest. Most people will only commit to one or two webinars per week, so you’ll be competing with other players in the field.

While you may assume people want to attend web seminars in the afternoon, when they’re off work, it’s not entirely true. Some statistics suggest that the time most people prefer to attend webinars is 10 a.m. or 11 a.m. Keep in mind that you’ll probably have guests from different time zones, and if you’re really far away from your targeted audience, you may even have to sacrifice some sleep to host. You can use Google Analytics to locate the regions of the world where most of your online traffic comes from. You can also send surveys to your potential attendees asking them for the most convenient times for them to attend the webinar. And, try not to schedule the seminar for lunch hours.

While promoting your video seminar, mention that it will be recorded – people will know it’s worth signing up even if they can’t attend and that they’ll receive the recording later.

Step 6: Marketing the webinar

To run an online presentation, you need people to register for it. It’s not just the content that makes them register – it’s how you promote it. Here are 5 sure ways to get that going.

Start with your own website - Add attractive, calls to actions and links on your website that take visitors directly to the registration page. The beauty of using your own website is that you can be as subtle or as bold as you like. Pop-ups, sidebar ads, or hyperlinks within your own blogs are all good options, so use whatever you feel comfortable with. You’re getting traffic to your website anyway, use it to get attendees to your webinar.

Devote a blog post to the webinar itself - Use the blog to articulate your unique approach to the problem you’ve identified and build interest in your solution. Describe exactly what will happen at the webinar, especially for the benefit of those who’ve never attended one. Tell them what to expect, and make them want to see it for themselves.

Send invitations - Fire a well-composed and exciting email out to your entire list. Post the registration link, dates and basic info on all of your social media accounts.

Team up with others in your industry - Ask them join you as a co-host and have them invite their audience to the webinar. You can exchange their support for a share of sales proceeds (or for a similar cross-promotion for one of their events).

Get social - A week before your webinar, ask your audience on social media what areas are they struggling with in your area of expertise. Get some engagement going and let them know you’ll be addressing this topic in your next webinar. When people are engaged in a conversation about a topic, they are more inclined to attend a webinar about it.

Keep in mind that the goal isn’t simply to invite as many people as possible, but to target those most likely to attend.

Send reminders - There are more emails you should send than just the invitation emails. On average, only about a third of the people who have registered will attend your webinar, so you should really make sure they don’t forget to join you. When people have registered to your event and left you their email address, it’s expected of you to, firstly, thank them for registering. Secondly, remind them of the upcoming seminar.

Marketers usually agree that the best times to send event reminder emails are a week before, an hour before, and 5 minutes before. One week before encourages the registrants to mark the date in their calendar for the next week.

And the email sent 5 minutes before the webinar creates such a sense of urgency, that they make up for the greatest percentage of attendees.

Registration numbers can be deceiving, so reserve judgment on the impact of your marketing until you see the number of attendees as a percentage of registrants. Quality platforms include analytics tools that can help you wade through the data to determine exactly what brought guests to each webinar. This allows you to focus on the strategies that work best for you.

Step 7: Converting the attendees/non-attendees

It is often noticed that some marketers fail to follow up with attendees at their webinar. This can be a grave mistake, as you’re missing out on an opportunity to continue engaging your audience. Send them an email thanking them along with a survey asking them to share their feedback and rate their experience, plus a call to action for future webinars. Make sure to send a follow-up email along with a recording of the webinar to the people who signed up for the webinar but were unable to attend it.

Following up will go a long way in encouraging the audience to attend future webinar events and even be involved with your company.

Once you have successfully hosted your webinar, start evaluating your efforts.Use the feedback provided by your attendees in the follow-up emails. Consider these and make adjustments to ensure that your future webinars are even more successful.


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