Webinars are sales machines. For one company, a single webinar brought in $11,283.
Webinars are live online events that generate interest, leads, and sales for a business. If you’re planning a webinar, how do you set yourself up for success?
Let’s find that out today.
1. Choose a product-led topic
Without the right topic, you’ll never attract the right customers.
The trick here is to pick a trending topic that lets you weave in your product as the ultimate solution.
Here are three excellent places to source for such webinar topics:
(i) User comments and questions
Go through comments on your blog, CRM software, and social media channels.
Take note of the most common questions from your target audience and try to spot underlying themes.
(ii) Email list
Survey or poll your email subscribers.
Questions like “What keeps you up at night?” and “What’s your biggest goal for next year?” unearth their pain points and desires.
Join Facebook groups, subreddits, or Slack communities. Jot down questions or discussions with the highest engagement.
For example, if you’re a sales coach who works with sales development representatives, you might visit the r/sales subreddit.
Click Top and This month, and you’ll see dozens of trending topics for the current month.
Note this post that talks about the downside of LinkedIn:
The 500+ upvotes and nearly 200 comments indicate that this matter frustrates your target audience deeply.
No doubt it’d be an intriguing topic to explore in a webinar.
Consider discussing alternate sales channels for prospecting before positioning your eight-week sales boot camp as a solution.
2. Pick a format
No one wants their webinars to fall on deaf ears.
To fully engage your audience, you need to identify the best format that helps them grasp your solutions or ideas quickly.
If you sell software tools, a product demonstration webinar is a no-brainer.
You might teach current customers how to make the most out of the tool and show prospects how it solves their problems simultaneously.
Are you a service provider? Opt for a walk-through webinar to show your process in action.
Here’s Joanne Wiebe from Copyhackers demonstrating how she writes effective headlines.
This hands-on practice makes valuable training for copywriters.
Not only did they get to see a copywriting master at work, but they also walked away with actionable tips and more confidence.
3. Get visual
Webinars without slides are boring—unless it’s a Q&A session with a sought-after expert.
Without eye-catching slides, viewers will struggle to follow directions and likely leave a webinar halfway.
Here are five dos and don’ts to keep that from happening:
Don’t design your slides like a script. A webinar presentation should complement your talking points, not compete for attention.
Don’t make claims without proof. Always back up your statements from credible and updated sources.
Do lead with accomplishments on the first page of your presentation. Whether it’s awards, testimonials, or the Fortune 500 companies you’ve worked with, prove your expertise from the get-go.
Do use visuals to maintain the audience’s attention. It’s hard to grasp blocks of text riddled with mind-numbing facts. Use graphs and charts for better visualization.
Do stay consistent with the branding and design of your slides. A presentation tool will help you make last-minute changes quickly.
For example, with Decktopus, any change in the font or color you make in one slide is automatically applied in all the others.
4. Pick a webinar sidekick
Robust webinar software tools help you stream better and convert them into customers.
Besides the basics like video quality, affordability, and ease of use, a great webinar tool will also boast the following features:
- Audience interaction tools: Look for real-time chat, polls, and reaction buttons (e.g., raise hand). This creates an interactive and engaging webinar.
- Integrations: Connect with third-party tools to streamline your workflow. For example, if your sales team is presenting a product demo, integrate your webinar tool with a revenue intelligence platform to get insights into how they sell.
- Low maintenance: The easier it is to set up, the more likely people will show up for your webinar. Opt for a webinar tool that doesn’t require any lengthy installation. Bonus if it’s presented directly on the browser.
Pick a webinar platform based on your use case.
For the budget-strapped founder running free online events, there’s Google Meet.
Are you a coach selling paid workshops? Check out ClickMeeting. Its integration with PayPal is excellent.
If you want to manage webinars in one place, you can’t go wrong with Onlive. From setting up a registration website to analyzing your metrics, this end-to-end encrypted event management platform runs your webinars from start to finish.
Grab the Onlive lifetime deal on AppSumo today for $79 (usual price: $1010).
5. Recruit a team
It takes an all-star team to run a successful webinar.
Here are the members to rally together for a smooth-sailing session.
- Timekeeper: Successful webinars start and end on time. Appoint a team member to keep a close eye on the clock. This is especially crucial for webinars with multiple speakers and short-burst practice sessions.
- Tech support: Audio and screen issues are common in webinars, so get a tech-savvy member on standby for technical difficulties. Better yet, have another webinar tool as a backup.
- Attendee: Get a co-worker to pose as an attendee and ask pointed questions in the chat window. For example, if you’re promoting a free trial in the webinar, have them ask about the sign-up link. Yes, it’s sneaky, but it works.
- Moderator: Comments keep conversations going, but the trouble is, they can get heated at times. Appoint a moderator to manage these incoming comments.
Some webinar platforms let you remove inappropriate comments before they’re published on the main conversation window. Others even allow you to manage them while you’re away from the webinar.
Take Active Webinar, for instance.
If you’re running an evergreen webinar, all you have to do is select how often you want the simulated live session to run.
Since Active Webinar integrates with Twilio, you can receive attendees’ messages via SMS right from your phone. That way, you can be away from your evergreen webinar and still chat with your audience in real-time.
Grab the Active Webinar lifetime deal on AppSumo today for $39 (usual price: $7,990).
6. Improve ambience
Your backdrop sets the tone for your webinar.
A messy space screams unprofessionalism. But a picture of a furnished digital office does wonders for the ambience.
Take these virtual backgrounds, for instance.
You can use these virtual and animated backgrounds with or without a green screen.
Grab Virtual Backgrounds for Video Conferencing on AppSumo today for $9.90 (usual price: $19.90).
7. Pick a time and date
It’s tricky finding a time and date that works for your audience, especially when everyone’s scattered across different time zones.
According to various studies, the best days to run a webinar in the US are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
In terms of time, 10 am and 11 am are your best options.
Take these statistics with a grain of salt and experiment to see which works best for you.
8. Set up registration page
The landing page houses all essential details about your webinar.
With hyper-fast web builders and all-in-one event management suites available today, anyone can quickly whip up a registration page with a few clicks of the button.
Here’s the information you should include in your webinar landing page:
- Webinar topic or theme
- Start time and end time (according to time zones)
- Featured host or speaker(s) and the topics they’ll talk about
- [Optional] Exclusive perks (e.g., software deals, discounts)
There’s a lot more to designing a high-converting landing page.
Discover how to create effective landing pages here.
9. Promote to drive attendance
Promotion drives interest and sales.
Run a successful blog? Write a series of blog posts to feature high-level strategies from the webinar presenters.
Inviting guest speakers? Piggyback on their vast social media network. Encourage them to promote the webinar to their email subscribers and social media channels.
Want to tap into a larger audience? List your webinar on event directories like Eventbrite and Peatix.
Of course, we can’t talk about webinars without mentioning email marketing. With an ROI of $36 for every dollar spent, it is the most cost-effective channel at driving registration and attendance.
Here are three types of emails to include in a powerful webinar email sequence:
(i) Invitation email
Note: Skip this if you don’t have an email list.
The invitation email announces your webinar and calls for registration.
It should include the exact details of the webinar landing page.
Here’s Miro promoting its annual virtual event via email.
Note how the visual collaboration platform draws you in with eye-catching graphics and clear copy.
(ii) Confirmation email
The confirmation email notifies the subscriber that they’ve successfully registered and instructs them how they can join the webinar.
Besides the details from the landing page, here are three more things you need to include:
- Platform (if you require participants to download the software, inform them beforehand)
- Webinar link and passcode
- Audience questions (if your webinar consists of a Q&A session)
(iii) Reminder emails
The invitation email and confirmation email aim to generate interest and give directions, whereas the reminder email is responsible for driving attendance.
Send these email reminders at least three times:
- First reminder: One to two weeks before the webinar
- Second reminder: A day before the webinar
- Third reminder: An hour before the webinar
When Wild Apricot sent three email reminders, it saw a 215% increase in attendance.
Granted, some of the attendees came from the expert presenters’ list, but you can’t deny that follow-ups are a powerful way to drive conversions.
Pro tip: Experiment with different subject lines and email formats (e.g., plain text instead of HTML) to avoid email fatigue.
10. Do a test run
Preparation is the key to success.
After designing your slides deck, rehearse using a timer.
With Decktopus, you can refer to your notes while presenting and set time limits for each slide to ensure that you’re giving each point or idea sufficient attention.
Watch out for your body language, eye contact, and speech. Refer to Decktopus’ built-in presentation tips to improve your public speaking skills.
Grab the Decktopus lifetime deal on AppSumo today for $129 (usual price: $432).
Log in at least 30 minutes before the webinar’s start time to ensure that everything is working correctly. Even if there is a technical problem, you’ll have enough time to fix it.
11. Follow up with everyone
And finally, follow up with your attendees in a post-event thank you email.
This ensures you’re engaging with them and nurturing them down the sales funnel.
In your follow-up emails, consider including:
- Slides and webinar recordings: Upload the slide deck and video recording to cloud storage and YouTube and email the link to all attendees.
- Survey: User feedback helps you do better. In your survey, ask attendees what the highlights and their least favorite parts were. This helps you to focus on topics they care about and prevent hiccups in future sessions.
- Upcoming webinars: Don’t wait till the last minute to promote your upcoming webinar! Use this opportunity to tease your audience. If it’s a paid webinar, offer early-bird tickets to drive registration.
- Exclusive perks: Offer attractive bonuses to foster goodwill. B2B SaaS startups could offer an extended free trial or a premium feature for a limited time. For guest panel webinars, consider offering a discount code to promote the guest speakers’ products.
Pro tip: Make sure you’ve segmented your subscribers before sending these follow-up emails. You should only send surveys and exclusive perks to attendees, and future webinars announcements to both attendees and registrants.
Attract interest and sales for your webinar today
Successful webinars amplify growth for all businesses.
With these 11 tips, we’re sure you know how to launch a webinar from start to finish.
Here’s what you’ve learned so far:
- Choose a trending topic that lets you weave in your product as the ultimate solution.
- Pick a format that helps viewers grasp your solutions or ideas quickly.
- Get visual with slide decks!
- Pick a webinar sidekick that boasts audience interaction features, integrations and is easy to set up.
- Recruit a team for a smooth-sailing session.
- Improve ambience using virtual or animated backdrops.
- Pick a time and date that works for the majority of your audience.
- Set up a registration page to house all essential details about your webinar.
- Create an email sequence to drive registration and attendance.
- Do a test run to check for technical issues and rehearse with a timer.
- Follow up with everyone to nurture them down the sales funnel.
Webinars aren’t the only marketing channels to convert leads to customers.
There are also SEO, paid ads, emails, and social media. But when you’re a busy business owner, growing these channels is often not as easy as it looks.
Luckily, some tools make it possible.
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