The age of the webinar – a seminar on the web for the uninitiated– is upon us and if you are selling expertise, you should be considering them. Easy to set up, all you need is a slide presentation, a headset with mic, somewhere to host it and an audience.
Webinars have exploded into use in b2b marketing because business is international, technology is now available to support online information exchange and there is a thirst amongst business professionals for information to assist them in doing their job more efficiently and effectively.
Attending a webinar does not involve any travel time or in most cases, any cost. As most businesses and homeworkers have broadband internet access, the ability to access and follow a livestream of information is available to all.
Webinars are best used in support of other activity and act as a call to action to website and blog visits, material downloads and enquiries. Why? Because a group of people have identified themselves as being interested in what you have to say.
And you benefit twice, because webinars are often recorded and hosted on demand for people to view after the event. So, even if the number of people that attend ‘live’ can be significantly down on the registration number, the likelihood is most (around 80%) will view the webinar within a few months.
How to get started?
The format of a webinar is fairly uniform. The presenter controls a screen and the material and has access to instant messaging in order to respond to messages and questions. A typical duration is thirty minutes presentation plus time for questions.
Specialist sites such as Bright Talk have channels dedicated to all sorts of business and educational sectors, whilst major sector specific media owners offer webinar services to clients.
Remember to give yourself time to promote the webinar. Add sign-up details and URLs to your email footer, website, blog, social media profiles, tweet regularly, your Linkedin status and groups and any other customer/prospect facing material.
Webinars are taking off in a wide variety of sectors including food (NutraIngredients above), packaging, professional services and chemicals to name just a few. Check out websites of leading publications in your sector and industry portals; there will be opportunities.
Webinars are a great way of reusing existing content to great effect, to build a thought leadership position and to draw customers and prospects towards you in an engaging way.