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How To Run A Webinar in 5 Steps

Michael McDonagh
03-Nov-2015 10:30:00

How to run a webinar is a question that many businesses face. A lot of work can go into delivering the perfect online event. And rightly so!

After all, this is your opportunity to maximise your online presence and deliver your message and brand in the most engaging and interactive way.

But what happens if no one turns up? Scary thought, I know, but it is so important to know how to attract your audience so all of your hard work doesn’t go to waste.

With that in mind, I thought it would be worth sharing just a few ideas and techniques on how to run a webinar, which I think are often overlooked.

1. How To Run a Webinar - Know your audience

First of all, know who you’re targeting. It may seem obvious, but the more specific you can be about who your audience should be, the more likely they’re going to make the time.

Just think about how many emails you get inviting you to events, conferences and general product and service related pitches.

Now think about how many are actually relevant to you. Not many, right? Now think about the people you’re inviting to your event. It’s likely they’re going to be in the same boat as you.

What is so often overlooked is the title of your event. This isn’t an academic essay, this is an exciting opportunity for your market to know more about how you can help, so title your session accordingly so that it is relevant and enticing.

 

Actually, this brings me on to my next point…

2. How To Run a Webinar - Give them a reason to register

This is where you’re going to stand out.

Picture all of those drab registration forms asking for details so you can access another monotonous, static presentation in a grey, emotionless web page.

Everyone is doing it so you need to stand out. And the good news is you can! Offer your audience the option to engage, be quirky, include video on your registration page, be vibrant!

You have the ability to create something special when you use a platform like WorkCast where Your Brand is core to our mission. Be as creative as you like and make sure you don’t hold back.

Standing out in a busy marketplace is the marketer’s job. So utilise custom branding options and video (as well as an awesome title) to make it irresistible for your audience to register.

3. How To Run a Webinar - Get the date, and the time, right!

Now the points above are all well and good, but they’re completely lost if you don’t get your timing right.

We deliver our own webinars between 12:30 and 13:30 on a Thursday because this works pretty well for us.

But remember my first point, you know your audience so you know when they’re around! If you don’t, ask them! Set some polls up in your event asking for feedback.

This not only provides additional engagement for your viewers, but is the perfect opportunity for you to ask the questions you want to know the answers to!

Don’t forget, there might be a time that’s perfect for your target audience but is wrong for you, in these situations pre-recording your online event and setting it to broadcast live at a fixed time can be a life saver.

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4. How To Run a Webinar - Use Social Media

This wouldn’t be a post about attracting attendees to your content if there wasn’t a point made about social media.

Social media is your webinar marketing friend. It will expose your brand and topic to new people (see point 1 – you don’t know EVERYONE, do you?) and will allow for an organic growth of awareness with people liking and sharing your updates, creating an online community.

Set tasks across your business for people to share your registration page on LinkedIn or tweet about it.

Get your colleagues involved in shouting about your brand so you can generate a buzz and a sense of urgency and excitement around your event.

Maybe buy some advertising on LinkedIn and focus it towards your target audience? Ensure webinar success by getting everyone involved!

5. How To Run a Webinar - Remind, Remind, Remind!

So, social media works. It’s clear. But email is still going to be the most direct method of getting people registered.

It’s also how you’re going to remind them! You’ve perfected your title and you’ve got an amazing registration page that’s convinced people to register.

But you did the right thing and started marketing 3 or 4 weeks out from the event. I don’t know about you, but I barely remember the weekend when Monday morning raises its ugly head, never mind a webinar I registered for a month ago.

So don’t rely on all of your registrants being world memory champions and give them a bit of help by reminding them. First of all, the WorkCast webinar platform will send them a confirmation email right after registering so they can test their connection and add the event to their diary.

That would be enough of a reminder for some people but remember, your registrants are busy so schedule to automatic reminder emails, 24 hours and 1 hour before your event just to make sure you convert as many registrations as possible in to attendees.

Bonus! USE your On Demand!

No matter how fastidious you are in your marketing, some people are still going to miss it, or forget, or simply get tied up with something else.

We all do it. WorkCast will automatically record your webinar session so you can publish an on demand version in exactly the same branded workflow.

Use it!

I dread to think how many amazing events lie there, lost in the ether, collecting dust, when they could be repurposed straight after the event for people that couldn’t make it.

It’s a second bite of the cherry! Even send it to the people that did attend live, they may do your job for you and share it with colleagues.

But don’t forget about it. Having a slow content month or busy with another big marketing project.

Dig out a webinar from 6 months ago and get it back on social media!


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