It’s time to learn how to plan and organize a webinar to beat those competitors who think it’s another unnecessary tool. Just two years ago during the Covid-19 pandemic when we all had to work from home, businesses held webinars that replaced physical events.
Today, login to any social media, and within a few scrolls, you’ll come across a business promoting a webinar. That’s why we believe like hipsters, skinny jeans, and bucket hats, webinars are here to stay.
There’s a way to plan and organize webinars that yield positive results. keep reading to find out the strategies to use to organize successful webinars all the time.
What is a Webinar?
A webinar is short for a web-based seminar. It is a live video conference that leverages the internet to connect a host to a broader global audience. It is your web version of a physical business conference or seminar.
Today, there are hundreds of interactive features and tools that make webinars exciting and that ensure physical human contact is the only thing missing from your meeting.
The following features make webinars effective interactive tools for communicating with your target audience during an online business event:
Live video conference – you can chat with your target audience, regardless of the location.
Screen sharing – you can use this feature to display presentations, slides, and any other multimedia content to the target audience.
Resource sharing – there is no limit to the materials you can share with your audience during a webinar session.
Interactivity – you can have real conversations with your target audience, including group discussions, live polling, and Q&A sessions.
On-demand access – you can record all your webinar sessions and share them with other target audiences who couldn't make it to attend the event.
Why You Should Learn to Plan and Organize a Webinar
The use of webinars spiked to about 67% in the last quarters of 2020. It was at the height of the pandemic, and everyone was figuring out how to continue working from home. Since then, marketers have identified webinars as ideal marketing and lead-generation tools.
95% of businesses still believe webinars are essential to their marketing strategy. Moreover, 73% of B2B businesses consider webinars an effective way to generate high-quality leads.
Webinars are also cost-effective. You save on the cost of the venue that you incur when planning a physical business event. The online meeting also saves you the time for planning and organizing logistics for a physical event.
You can use webinars for numerous activities including:
Employee training and development
Online training programs
Product promotion and demos
B2B seminars and conference
Community members' engagement
Web conferences or panel discussions with industry experts and networks
Customer retention and nurturing
Now, here’s how to plan and organize a webinar.
1. Define Your Objectives
Why do you intend to hold a webinar? Outline the goals you hope to accomplish and ensure these objectives align with your business goals. Here are some reasons you may want to conduct a webinar:
Increase brand awareness
Sell a product or services
Note: these objectives are general. You have to be specific and include measurable KPIs to evaluate your webinar's performance when developing your goals.
2. Brainstorm Webinar Ideas
Anyone can develop a topic for a webinar. However, it takes a real expert to create a topic that aligns with your target audience's needs. It would help if you aimed to generate topic ideas that add value to your target audience. Only then will you be able to generate interest for your webinar from the target audience.
Moreover, your webinar topic should also align with the objectives you set in the first stage. Remember, your objectives had KPIs.
Therefore, every decision or action you make after this stage should bring you closer to achieving these goals. Select a topic that adds value to your target audience and generates enough interest.
Hot tip: the topic should answer a specific question your target audience may have or solve a specific issue they experience. Use the right keywords to enable you to generate enough interest for your topic and make it easier to market your event.
3. Choose Your Webinar Format
You can adopt one of these webinar formats:
A panel discussion is ideal when your target audience includes people in your network and industry experts. The format encourages round-table conversations that build a dialogue around a specific topic.
Panel discussions give every panelist enough time to share their expertise on a specific niche. Expect the panelists to have differing opinions on certain issues.
Therefore, ensure your panelists are knowledgeable and experts in the industry. When you invite popular experts to your panel, it will generate enough interest and attract more target audiences.
Single Speaker Presentations
The single-speaker presentation format is mainly suitable for a small-audience webinar. You’ll find a keynote speaker who will present to the audience and answer any questions they may have.
It is an ideal format if your objective is to generate product sales or develop customer relationships. The keynote speaker (could be you) will connect with your audience talk about needs and offer suggestions as to why your products or services are the best solutions.
The Q&A webinar is ideal if you are trying to create brand awareness and generate new leads. The format will generate more success if you use product experts to answer the questions raised by your audience.
The format encourages active participation from your audience. The process will allow you to learn more about your target audience's needs based on their questions.
That creates excellent opportunities to build and develop relationships with your audience. You can use the information you gather about your target audience to cultivate the leads you generate.
4. Select Your Webinar Platform
Choosing the right platform is crucial to achieving your webinar objectives. You can use many webinar platforms, each with its capabilities and features. Consider the following factors when selecting your platform
Budget – select a platform that offers the features you need but conforms to your budget.
Ease of use – ensure the platform you choose has easy navigation for your and the audience for a seamless experience
Features – consider the attribute of each platform, like screen sharing abilities and interactive elements if you are using the Q&A format
Support - you need a platform that offers timely customer support in case of challenges during the webinar
5. Create a Contingency Play for the Webinar
Having a backup plan saves you the agony of dealing with the frustrations of your audience. They include simple procedures like setting up a wireless hotspot in case the ethernet connection fails.
Also, don't forget to prerecord your webinar content. It ensures that you have something to keep your audience busy as you troubleshoot any technical issues during the event.
Moreover, email your attendees a copy of the presentation slides shortly before the event. It will keep them engaged and be a backup if you experience issues with the slide-sharing feature on your webinar platform.
6. Promote Your Webinar
All your efforts to this point won't matter if no one knows about your webinar. Therefore, you must develop a marketing strategy to publicize your event.
Create a webinar landing page to promote your webinar. The landing page also serves as a registration platform for your attendees.
However, you need more than that to get you over the finish line.
You have to be more creative to increase your webinar attendance. Research shows that only 36% of people who register for your webinar attend, over 35% of your attendees only register in the last week of the event, and 29% register on the date of the webinar.
These statistics appeal to your email marketing campaign better. Set up a series of email campaigns that include the link to the event landing page as the CTA. The campaign will include reminder emails 1-2 days before the event.
Other effective marketing strategies to promote your webinar are paid social media ads, websites, or blogs.
Note: Some strategies like blogs are only effective if you have SEO content that generates interest from your target audience.
7. Post-Webinar Follow Up
The post-event follow-up is as important as all the preparation you did before the webinar. Remember, this is not the last event you will be conducting, and you may be targeting the same audience for the next webinar.
Send your attendees a thank you email. Ensure the email includes a summary of the key issues discussed in the webinar.
Also, use the email as an opportunity to gather feedback about the event from your attendees. The audience feedback will help you assess the event's performance based on your established metrics.
Follow up with the target audience who registered but could not attend the event. Send the person a copy of the recorded webinar. It will encourage them to be present for the next event.
Book Marie as Your Webinar Keynote Speaker
Plan your webinar using these steps. Remember to invite a confident keynote speaker, who understands their field, and has experience in speaking engagements. Book me as your keynote speaker for business automation and efficiency today.